Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick has asked the Texas Rangers to assist the Houston Police Department in finding Tom Brady’s missing Super Bowl jersey, saying in a statement that it has historical value and was “stolen.”
The jersey is now valued at $500,000.
Patrick said the jersey has been called the “most valuable NFL collectable ever.”
According to ESPN, a Houston Police Department spokesman said “no police report has been filed regarding the missing jersey but the department has been in contact with NFL Security.” ESPN quoted an NFL spokesman as saying, “We have been looking into this disappointing matter and will continue to assist law enforcement authorities,” and estimated the jersey’s value could be around $500,000.
On Super Bowl night, Brady was captured on video telling New England Patriots’ owner Robert Kraft that someone took his Super Bowl 51 jersey. He was still saying it’s gone the day after the game.
That would obviously be a big deal: The jersey will be iconic because the Brady-led victory was; the star QB engineered a stunning comeback in overtime after a dismal first half that had many people counting the Patriots out.
Here’s Brady talking about putting the jersey in his bag and then not being able to find it anymore:
An early report said Brady’s jersey was not stolen after all. Rather, a diligent equipment manager locked it up so it couldn’t be stolen, that report says. However, now the Boston reporter who was the basis of that account says the jersey appears to be missing.
A “Patriots equipment manager locked up Tom Brady’s Super Bowl-worn jersey. It wasn’t stolen,” reported NESN. The site said that information came from Tom Leyden of FOX25.
The headline of that story: “Tom Brady’s Super Bowl LI Jersey Not Stolen; Equipment Manager Handled It.” However, Leyden wrote a follow up on February 6 that attempted to clarify that report. And that’s where the saga of “jerseygate” gets more confusing.
Here’s what Leyden said on the air on Super Bowl night about the missing jersey, “USA Today has reported in the last few minutes that Tom Brady’s jersey may have been taken from the locker room – stolen from the locker room – but Butch just ran over to one of the team reps, and the team rep does not believe that to be true, so we will stay on top of that story as well. The team rep said he saw one of the security people take Tom’s jersey and put it in a safe place.”
The plot thickened when Leyden asked Brady on Monday about the jersey and, he wrote, Brady said:
I put it in my bag and then came out and it wasn’t there anymore, so it’s unfortunate because that’s a nice piece of memorabilia. So if it shows up on eBay somewhere, someone let me know, try to track that down.
Leyden then asked the Patriots and they “clarified that the message originally relayed on Sunday night to my colleague, Butch, was that the jersey and Brady’s pads were taken off the field by an official before the trophy ceremony. Based on what Brady said Monday morning, it seems the jersey was lost after that.”
So it appears that Brady doesn’t know where his jersey is, and it might have been stolen (or somehow misplaced) after all.
Many prominent news stations were still reporting on February 6 that the jersey was stolen or might have been stolen or just that Tom Brady thought it was stolen.
WMTW-TV has a transcript of the Kraft-Brady conversation about the jersey. The television station reported that Kraft entered the locker room “to deliver victory cigars to the team,” and went up to Brady.
“Someone stole my game jersey,” Brady tells Kraft.
“You better look online,” Kraft responded.
In the locker room scene, Brady is seen wearing a T-shirt. On the way to the team bus, Brady still thought the jersey had vanished. “While Brady walked to the team bus, a reporter asked the quarterback if he had recovered the jersey. Brady said he hadn’t and added: ‘Yeah, it’s going to be on eBay at some point,” according to The Associated Press.
Relive a key play in the game here, when the Patriots started to turn it around against the Atlanta Falcons: