Lawyers for the NFL and the NFL Players Association were back in front of U.S. District Court Judge Richard M. Berman on Wednesday for the latest DeflateGate settlement hearing. And according to reporters in attendance, it doesn’t sound like Berman thinks highly of Commissioner Roger Goodell’s rationale for the four-game suspension he handed down to New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (neither were in attendance Wednesday).

Berman’s questioning of NFL lawyer Daniel Nash seemed to center on whether what the league supposedly uncovered in the Wells Report — that Brady was “generally aware” that footballs were being deflated — jibed with the suspension handed down by Goodell (as told by New York Daily News reporter Stephen Brown):

Berman also questioned whether the NFL would go down this road again if it uncovered a similar violation in the future.

One thing to keep in mind: Berman could indeed be troubled by the way in which this was all handled but still side with the league if he thinks it followed the proper procedure as outlined in the collective bargaining agreement. He also has strenuously asked both sides to settle this before he’s forced to issue his decision, and reports that surfaced Wednesday seem to indicate that Brady could be amendable to some sort of suspension.

“There are enough strengths and weaknesses on both sides,” Berman said, per Fox Sports’ Mike Garafolo. “That would lead all the more to a settlement. That seems like the logical and rational outcome. It doesn’t mean it’s going to happen.”

As for our next officially scheduled DeflateGate update:

Both sides have asked Berman to issue his ruling — should the sides not settle — by Sept. 4, which is six days before the Patriots open the regular season. Berman said Wednesday he would abide by those wishes, issuing a decision before that date.