NFL commissioner Roger Goodell will not hear New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady's appeal of his recent four-game suspension for his role in the Deflategate controversy before the appointed deadline, according to an Associated Press report citing unnamed sources.
According to the league's collective bargaining agreement, the appeal must be heard within 10 business days of its filing, or May 27, unless the league and the filing party agree to delay the hearing.
A separate report Monday by Pro Football Talk said the NFLPA interprets the 10-day rule as requiring only that a date for the hearing of the appeal be set within 10 days of the receipt of the appeal.
On May 11, the NFL suspended Brady for the first four games of the 2015 season, fined the Patriots $1 million and docked the team two draft picks.
A report by independent investigator Tom Wells found, "it is more probable than not that New England Patriots personnel participated in violations of the Playing Rules and were involved in a deliberate effort to circumvent the rules" and that it is probable that Brady "was at least generally aware of... the release of air from Patriots game balls."
The NFL Players Association filed an appeal on behalf of Brady on May 14, pushing for an independent arbiter to hear the case. Later that same day, the NFL announced that Goodell would personally hear the appeal.
When the NFLPA formally requested on May 19 that Goodell recuse himself from from the arbitration process - citing "the commissioner's history of inconsistently issuing discipline against our players" - the NFL reportedly declined.
The NFLPA could have possibly "delayed the clock" on the traditional 10-day timetable when it formally requested Goodell's recusal, according to SI.com legal analyst Michael McCann.