Body Language Expert | Motivational Speaker | Keynote Speaker | Communication Expert | Presentation & Speaking Skills Trainer | One-On-One Coach

Tom Brady’s Body Language in
His DeflateGate Interview: Is He Lying?

I read Tom Brady’s body language for CNN.  Notice how on the surface he appears fairly cool and smiles a lot. But here is the bottom line, his body language shows anger, nervousness and evasion and a content analysis of what he says shows evasion.  He does not talk about the day of the football game and says he didn’t notice that the balls were deflated and he does not say he didn’t ask for them to be deflated.

The Five Most Compelling Clips and The Body Language and Script Analysis of quarterback Tom Brady. I have the link to Tom Brady’s DeflateGate Interview below and the time codes where each section begins

A Time code: 32 When Tom Brady is asked about altering the ball.

  1. When asked, “When and how did you supposedly alter the balls?”
    • Brady first gives closed envelop lip cue that shows he is reigning in his true emotion and if you look at his eyes you see that emotion is anger. Also watch how he flips his chin up, in a way that seemly looks like I got this question but if you look at the micro facial cues actually shows he would like to say something more graphic and derogatory like, “Up yours!” 
    • Then Brady looks away to escape the question and shakes his head no, but the head shake no comes after he speaks rather than before. That timing is SAY then Show. He says the words then shakes no that is an indication of deceit.
    • Then we hear Brady give a tongue click. He clicks his tongue on the roof of the mouth cleaning out the bad taste of the question and would like to spit at you.
    • Then he gives a mistimes shoulder shrug. Mistimes is SAY then Show rather than Show and Say that would have indicated an honest response.   He says, “I didn’t...” then shrugs. To be clear, when you’re telling the truth you feel the true emotion in your limbic brain, you show it nonverbally then you say the words. You shrug and say, not say and then shrug.
    • Let’s now look at his answer. I am going to print it out for you so we can do a content statement analysis.  
    • Should have been a straightforward answer that he has prepped for and in fact most stories I read about this misquote his response what he says it.  “I didn’t UHHHHH you know “Have any ahhh you know I didn’t try to alter to the ball in any way. “  People think that the sentence was I didn’t alter the ball. The filler ahhh he is going in to his limbic brain under stress, feeling but not language so he says uhhh then he goes to filler phrase you know twice. He starts the sentence three times. Before he gives the quotes I didn’t alter the ball in any way. But that response means very little.  We already know he couldn’t have physically altered the ball, what we want to know is did he ask for it to be altered and did he know it was altered.
  2. Where Does the Person Enter the Story?

    An interesting way of detecting deception is to notice when the “suspected deceiver” begins to tell the story.  When Brady begins to tell the story he does not talk about the day of the football game where the supposed deflating took place.  He instead starts a NEW STORY where he can truthfully talk about the process he goes through in picking a ball. That means he can tell a true story that has nothing to do with the event.

    When he talks about I have the process I go through with the ball he gets to be very passionate and strong, but again the answer he gives doesn’t mean anything.  His process would happen on an imaginary day, not the day the balls were supposedly deflated.  It would be like if you asked a robber if he robbed the bank, robber talking in details about his workout at the gym every day. Or if the robber talks about his work out in the afternoon after a morning robbery took place.
    • Time Code 1:50 When Tom Brady is asked, “Is Tom Brady a cheater. Tom gives a cascade of body language cues. First Brady gives a cover smile showing his teeth. He then gives a nervous laugh. He then rocks side to side which is a self-comfort cue. Then he pulls in and hides his lips and you may remember lips disappear when we don’t like what we hear so this shows he does not like the question and may hide his true answer. 

      All of these movements serve as a way to delay his answer for a usually long time. All of those are cues of someone who is very nervous. They are not a full flag on the play that Brady is lying, but odd when he delays so long in answering that the actual answer is not a definitive statement. Instead he does all this stalling and gathers himself up and gives what appears to be a nice smooth honest answer, but notice the wording. “I don’t believe so. It’s a disclaimer phrase. That sounds like a lawyer prepped him to give that answer to save him legally. As a Media coach I would not recommend that kind of soft answer. I call words like believe and feel Mash Potato words.  They are words that hide the meat of the truth behind the mash potatoes.  He follows that statement with more mash potato words. “I feel like I’ve always played within the rules.”

      Then he follows with a story that means nothing. He talks about his morals. He does not talk about that day and say he didn’t notice that the balls were deflated and he didn’t ask for them to be deflated. . Brady says. “I would never do anything to break the rules. I believe in fair play, I respect the league and everything they’re doing to try to create a competitive playing field for all the NFL teams. It’s a very competitive league. Every team is doing the best they can to win every week. I believe in fair play and will always do that for as long as I’m playing.”
  3. Dupers delight smile: Time code 4:30 He does this several times on times you could show more but at code 4:30 Capture his smile. We are going to do our best… to be prepared for the game. Dupers delight smile Giddiness are his own success. He is such a cutie pie, charm really works for him.
  4. 7:08 -7:16 or 17 How he likes ball… “I would never do anything outside of the, THE rules of play. I would never you know have someone do something that I thought was outside the the the rules. 
  5. His gestures are in sync he get very passionate, Tricks us into thinking he is giving a heartfelt answer, but the phrase “outside the rules of play.” Criminal saying I didn’t do anything bad, is a matter of interpretation. And he stumbles over the answer and the second time he sucks in and whispers “the rules” and sticks out his tongue in a tongue thrust. This indicates he is not certain and he is angry at being pushed on it.
  6. Throughout the interview Brady gives many upside down smiles that show his displeasure and discomfort and hidden anger.