The New England Patriots are easy to hate and impossible to trust. The AFC representative in Super Bowl XLIX on Feb. 1 and its infernal coach, Bill Belichick, has again been caught cheating.

To “Spygate,” add what’s being called “Deflategate” and “Ballghazi.”

ESPN is reporting that  11 of 12 balls the Patriots used in Sunday’s AFC Championship against the Indianapolis Colts were tampered with to make them lighter and easier to grip. The Patriots crushed Indy 45-7, with QB Tom Brady throwing for 226 yards and three touchdowns. He threw one interception, which led to his balls being scrutinized.

Whether Brady’s balls gave the Patriots an unfair advantage is debatable, but the Colts lost because they play chronically crappy defense, which is why they didn’t win three or four more championships with Peyton Manning at QB. Deflated balls did not help LeGarrette Blount rumble for 148 yards and three touchdowns on 30 carries. 

The scowling tactician many call “Belicheat” hasn’t won a Super Bowl since “Spygate,” when he was caught videotaping opponents’ signals. If he wins on Feb. 1, he will be hailed as perhaps the greatest coach of all time.

If he loses, it will be more empirical evidence that without cheating, he’s pretty average.