BOSTON (CBS) — Remember the football James White carried into the end zone to win the Super Bowl that went missing? It turns out the football was never missing at all.
The Hall at Patriot Place tweeted on Monday that White’s Super Bowl-winning football was on display. It appeared that the Patriots had recovered a lost piece of history, but the ball had actually been in the team’s possession the whole time.
White had previously said that he didn’t know what happened to the ball, which led to reports that it may have been missing along with Tom Brady’s jersey. Patriots spokesman Stacey James corrected a Pro Football Talk report that the Patriots had “located” the football, clarifying that the ball was “immediately recovered by the team’s equipment staff after the touchdown and properly secured.”
ESPN’s Mike Reiss later reported that a Patriots equipment assistant scooped up the ball shortly after the touchdown was scored, as is “normal protocol” for the team.
According to Reiss, White could eventually get the football as a “keepsake” for his performance in the Patriots’ historic comeback win. He may have lost the football for a time, but he did also get a new truck from Conan O’Brien out of his MVP-caliber performance in the Super Bowl.
Brady’s jersey, however, remains missing as police investigate the possible theft of the jersey Brady wore in Super Bowl LI.