Evidence collected so far by NFL investigators indicates that under-inflated footballs were used by the New England Patriots in the first half of Sunday's AFC Championship game, but not in the second half, the league said Friday. The question it wants to answer now is why—and whether anyone deflated balls on purpose. "We have not made any judgments on these points and will not do so until we have concluded our investigation and considered all of the relevant evidence," the NFL said in a statement.
The probe, led by NFL Executive Vice President Jess Pash and prominent criminal defense lawyer Ted Wells, was launched soon after the game and has already compiled interviews with Patriots personnel, game officials and "third parties with relevant information and expertise," the league said. Renaissance Associates, a private investigation firm, is providing forensic expertise in the reviewing of videos and other electronic evidence.