After a Super Bowl that produced multiple noteworthy and historic story lines – the New England Patriots overcoming a 25-point deficit, Bill Belichick and Tom Brady winning their record fifth title – one of the most abstract was the tale of the missing jersey. Following the game, Brady’s jersey was stolen from the Patriots’ locker room.
Until today, it was lost but as since confirmed by the Houston Police Department, it has been found alongside another one of Brady’s jerseys that went missing; the one he wore in Super Bowl XLIX. Law enforcement officials, the FBI and the NFL all worked in unison to find the piece of equipment that was valued at $500,000. According to Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo, it has been found in Mexico .
NFL insider Jay Glazer joined Fox Sport’s "Undisputed" to talk about how it was tracked down and had gotten south of the boarder in the first place. According to Glazer, a person of interest – via the Associated Press, one that has ties to a Honduran newspaper – emerged after surveillance video was analyzed by the FBI, NFL security, Patriots security and the Houston Police Department.
This person, according to Glazer, got credentialed as a member of the international media and simply walked into the locker room to get the jersey:
[T]hey have him going into the locker room right behind Bill Belichick as if he’s with the team. Goes in there, loiters around a little while and is seen leaving the locker room — this is the video they’re trying to look at right now — seen leaving a little bit later with something under his arm.
He goes in without anything under his arm, just your normal media backpack, comes out later with the backpack plus something under his arm. They’ve all zeroed in now, and from what I understand, Houston PD just put out that they were found down in Mexico and had to deal with authorities there to get them back on American soil. They had to authenticate them, make sure these were actually Tom Brady’s jerseys, and in fact they were.
The two stolen jerseys have since been returned to Boston and are scheduled to be given to Brady later this week, as Acevedo noted in his press conference earlier today. Houston’s police chief also had some harsh words for NFL security:
I just hope that the NFL security takes a look at... Because they are the ones responsible for securing the locker rooms, they really need to check their protocols and their efforts [...]
Acevedo’s criticism, of course, is justified. Even though tracking down a stolen piece of fabric seems rather trivial, it would not have been needed if the NFL security did a proper job of securing the locker rooms after a similar incident appeared to have happened before.