New England Patriots football player Tom Brady, who was hit with a four-game suspension for knowing about and/or participating in a football deflation scheme, recently had his suspension nullified by a federal judge. The ruling was issued on Thursday in New York, after a multiple-month legal battle between the NFL and its athletes.

Judge Says: NFL Commissioner's Decision Was Legally Deficient

U.S. District Court Judge Richard Berman threw out the decision of NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell to punish Brady with a four-game suspension. Allegedly, the quarterback was involved in a strategy to partially deflate footballs (making them easier to grip) during a playoff victory last January. However, Berman decided that Goodell's decision to suspend Brady was legally deficient in multiple ways. For example, Brady was not given prior warning that his alleged actions could result in a suspension.

In his decision, the federal judge wrote, "The court finds that Brady had no notice that he could receive a four-game suspension for general awareness of ball deflation by others or participation in any scheme to deflate footballs."

The ruling will probably not be the last one made on the "Deflategate" or "Ballghazi" controversy, as it has been a very hot topic on sports radio shows, sports television and national headlines over the last year. For example, if the NFL wishes, it can still appeal the federal judge's decision, which would mean the legal issue could take even more months to resolve.

As of Thursday morning, neither the NFL players union nor the National Football League had commented on the ruling.

Could the Patriots Survive Without Brady?

New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady is such an integral part of the team, his suspension for four games could represent a serious setback for the Patriots. What do you think? Could the Patriots still be competitive without their star quarterback? Share your comments below!