White House spokesman Josh Earnest on Friday waded into deflate-gate, the NFL controversy over whether the New England Patriots cheated in the conference championship by deflating the team’s footballs below regulation level.

Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, a three-time Superbowl winner, took reporters’ questions about the allegations Thursday.

In the past, Brady has indicated that he prefers footballs inflated at lower levels than the top range of regulations, but on Thursday, he said he “didn’t alter the ball in any way” in his team's 45-7 win Sunday over the Indianapolis Colts. He defended himself and his team's reputation in a wide-ranging press conference that veered from his respect for the integrity of the game to references to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria and its far worse transgressions.

The press conference was widely panned by the media, with several commentators remaining unconvinced that Brady didn’t know anything about the ball deflation.

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