DeflateGate Science vs. The Wells Report

Launching on GoFundMe, HeadSmart Labs Seeks $75,000 to Conduct Cutting-Edge Research into Effect of Wet Weather Conditions on Football Inflation

May 27, 2015, 09:07 ET from HeadSmart Labs

PITTSBURGH, May 27, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- With the "DeflateGate" issue still largely unresolved and the results of The Wells Report for the NFL in question by many, HeadSmart™Labs announced today the launch of a GoFundMe fundraising campaign to conduct cutting-edge research on the effect of wet weather conditions on football inflation.

HeadSmart Labs' initial study set out to discover if weather during the AFC Championship Game on Sunday, January 18, 2015 between the Indianapolis Colts and the New England Patriots could have affected the inflation levels in the footballs. The Lab designed a study simulating actual game-time conditions using the given facts to show the greatest pressure change a football would have seen due to weather conditions. The study indicated that the pressure in the footballs used in the AFC Championship game could have dropped 1.95 PSI from weather and field conditions alone. The highest fluctuation in pressure that was measured in the Patriot's footballs during halftime is comparable to the same fluctuations measured in the initial HeadSmart Labs report.

However, The Wells Report does not come to the same conclusion. Citing research conducted by Exponent and recently released by the NFL, they stated it was probably not possible due to weather conditions alone, to achieve the pressure drops measured in the Patriots' footballs at halftime. This is significantly different from what was found in the initial HeadSmart Labs study in which regulation NFL footballs were rotated in a tub of water and wiped with a damp cloth, as opposed to being spritzed with a "standard household spray bottle" as was done by Exponent. In fact, HeadSmart Labs recorded a 0.7 PSI drop from wetting the footballs under more realistic rainy game day conditions, whereas The Wells Report's Exponent study only saw a 0.1 PSI drop. The Lab believes the level of dampness it used better replicates the conditions that the footballs were exposed to during the first half of the AFC Championship game. It is seeking funding to prove its hypothesis that these different methods of applying moisture explain the conflicting findings between the HeadSmart Labs report and The Wells Report - that if footballs are sufficiently wet, the footballs will experience a greater drop in pressure than was achieved by Exponent in The Wells Report.

"We believe that wetting the footballs more than with a hand held spray bottle was an unexamined factor that was not taken into account in The Wells Report; and because of this, the conclusion of the report stating that the pressure change in the footballs could not be entirely explained from weather conditions could be inaccurate," said Thomas Healy, founder of HeadSmart Labs. "We are conducting this fundraising in order to run further studies to support our initial findings.  We hope to explain some of the unexamined factors in The Wells Report and present these findings to the NFL." 

To learn more and about how to contribute to the HeadSmart Labs DeflateGate Study, visit Any additional funds that are raised through this campaign will go towards HeadSmart Labs' ongoing football helmet safety research.

About HeadSmart™ Labs, a Healy Ventures LLC company
HeadSmart™ Labs is a research company that is working on developing new approaches, testing devices, and products to aid in the prevention of head injuries from impact sports where helmets are required. HeadSmart Labs is currently working with researchers from Carnegie Mellon University, as well as student athletes from the Carnegie Mellon football team. Learn more at

Media Contact:
Erin Vadala, Warner Communications


SOURCE HeadSmart Labs