Somebody just made a lot of money from one of Tom Brady’s balls…footballs. Yes, a lucky fan who was given a game-ball during the AFC Championship just sold it for $43,740. Listed as a “deflategate” ball, Laura Nichols auctioned it off via Lelands.com and made football history.
She was given the ball during the third quarter by Patriots wide receiver Brandon LaFell, following a touchdown scored by teammate LeGarrette Blount. While the ball had been re-inflated after halftime, cited by the NFL investigation, it indeed was one of the deflated balls in the Patriots’ rotation.
When it was first put up for auction on Leland.com, site chairman Joshua Evans predicted the ball to sell for $100,000. While that wasn’t the case, it could still be a history-making record. In August last year, a ball used in the worst blowout game in college football history (Georgia Tech defeated Cumberland College 222-0 in 1916) was sold for $40,388. A football used in the 1958 NFL championship game sold for $16,730 in February, and a game-used ball from Super Bowl XXXVI, ironically enough signed by Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, sold for $4,915 in December.
The market for game-used footballs is booming, so look through your sports memorabilia. You could have some money sitting around. Coincidentally, the “deflategate” ball sold exactly six months following the Patriots’ 45-7 victory over the Colts in the AFC Championship.