Robert Kraft Says Patriots Wanted To Keep Darrelle Revis, No ‘Smoking Gun’ In Deflate-Gate


Yesterday at the annual NFL owners meetings in Arizona, Patriots owner Robert Kraft talked with the media about a number of issues, with Darrelle Revis and Deflate-Gate headlining the list.

From Mike Reiss of ESPN Boston, here are some of the quotes.

On Revis:

"“We thought we made a very competitive offer. I speak as a fan of the New England Patriots, we wanted to keep him. We wanted him in our system, and we have certain disciplines. We had hoped it worked out. It didn’t. We just don’t think about short-term decisions. For example, next year we have three very good young defensive players coming up and we have to factor that.”“We just don’t look at this year; we look out at the next few years. We’ve done OK doing that. As a fan, in March and April, I hate to lose [Revis]. But our real focus is what goes on in the fall and winter. I put my faith and respect with Bill [Belichick]. We have a lot of discussions and he’s done pretty good the last 15 years. The fan in me argues all the time with him but he has a pretty good record.”"

On losing Vince Wilfork:

"“That was one of the toughest things. It was harder than anything else [this offseason]. He’s someone we watched come in here; I developed a very strong personal tie to him. It’s the hardest part of this game, speaking as a fan and also someone who got to know he and Bianca and his kids. He wrote something beautiful; he’ll always be a Patriot and he’s keeping his home here.“Once again, we have certain disciplines and unfortunately — you know, the other thing sometimes the player is more valuable to one team than other team given how they’re constructed. Losing Vince is probably one of the hardest things that happened. Some emotional ties. He’s a pretty special guy.”"

On Deflate-Gate:

"“I know that there is no smoking gun here.”“We’re worried about the 2015 season, and that’s our focus.”"

Losing Revis obviously hurt the Patriots, but I think Kraft brings up a good point talking about the future of the defense. In the coming years, the Pats have a number of key defensive players whose contract will expire, namely Chandler Jones, Dont’a Hightower, and Jamie Collins. You can’t retain every single player you ever bring into the franchise. You have to pick and choose, and as Kraft says, he trusts Bill Belichick, and we all should as well.

If not re-signing Revis means we get to keep Devin McCourty, Jones, AND their two stud linebackers, I am more than happy to let number 24 walk. This defense needs the impact players in the front seven, and with Revis slowly but surely getting up there in age, these young studs represent a different kind of value to the team.

As for deflate-gate, I really don’t know what to say anymore. There are no facts, nothing has come out against the Pats, and this investigation of the NFL’s hasn’t even been concluded. Roger Goodell has handled this in the absolute worst way possible, and I honestly think he owes New England an apology.