SAN FRANCISCO -- At this point last year, the NFL was in the throws of an investigation into the New England Patriots and their involvement in possibly using deflated footballs during the 2014 AFC Championship Game.
Ted Wells was appointed as an independent investigator roughly five days after reports of possible infractions involving footballs first surfaced back on Jan. 18.
During NFL commissioner Roger Goodell's state of the union news conference Friday, he was asked why there was not a similar timeline and "gusto" toward an investigation into Peyton Manning, who was linked to the possible use of human growth hormone in a documentary by Al Jazeera America. The main source behind the report redacted his explosive comments before the documentary's release in December.
Manning has yet to pursue formal legal action against Al Jazeera, but did vehemently deny any use of HGH and welcomed an investigation.
"We take every allegation of violations of our policies or procedures -- particularly when it related to safety -- very seriously," Goodell said. "When these allegations first came up, we immediately began our investigation. We were clear of making sure that we were working with the other sports that would be involved, with WADA (World Anti-Doping Agency), make sure we were getting all the pertinent information.
"We will work with law enforcement if they are involved but we will also continue our own investigations and working cooperatively with everyone to make sure that we are taking this seriously, that we find out the conclusions," Goodell continued. "When we find out the facts we will share them, as we have in the past. We will want to make sure that we are transparent. We do not have an independent investigation going on at this point, other than working with the other leagues and with WADA. If we feel that that's necessary at some point, we may do that. At this point, we don't."
The optics of the situation certainly make it seem like two diverging investigations, though Brady's did not involve cooperation with WADA. Manning is set to play for the Broncos on Sunday in perhaps his final NFL game.