Historically significant football thrown by Tom Brady for his first ever NFL touchdown pass in 2000, with ironclad provenance.
When any diehard Tom Brady fan is asked the question, "When did Tom Brady throw his first NFL touchdown pass?" he or she would answer, probably with great assurance: "October 18, 2001, in a game against the San Diego Chargers." That answer, however, would be incorrect. Brady's first NFL touchdown pass in a regular-season game occurred on that date, but his first ever NFL touchdown pass occurred more than a year earlier in his rookie season, during the New England Patriots' final preseason game of the year against the Carolina Panthers on August 24, 2000, at Foxboro Stadium.
Offered here is the very ball thrown by Brady for that first-ever NFL touchdown pass in 2000, and it comes with the iron-clad provenance of having been directly consigned to this auction by the player who was on the receiving end of that historic throw, Dane Looker.
Looker was also a rookie that year, and both he and Tom Brady saw extensive playing time in the team's final preseason game. Brady's first NFL touchdown pass occurred in the third quarter, when he hit Looker with an eighteen-yard strike that gave the Patriots a 26-10 lead. It was the final touchdown of the game for the Patriots, who held on to win the game 29-21.
The Wilson Official NFL football, which is partially deflated, displays moderate use and has the word "Pats" written in black marker directly below the laces on the side bearing the "Wilson" name. Looker has provided a typed-signed notarized letter in which he attests to the ball's provenance and makes note that it has been in his possession since 2000. (The letter can be viewed in its entirety on our website.) Brady's touchdown pass to Looker can be viewed on Looker's twitter page, where one can hear announcer Don Criqui make note that it was Brady's first NFL touchdown pass. Also, Looker has captured a closeup image of himself holding the ball after he scores, where one can see the word "Pats" (blurry, but still legible) written on the ball in the same exact location as it appears on the offered ball (that photo also accompanies the ball).
The timeline of Tom Brady's career is marked by perhaps more milestone moments than any other NFL player, but there can only be one first for each achievement. When it comes to touchdown passes, this ball is that first. As such it represents one of the most important Brady footballs available to collectors and one that would be equally at home in either Canton, Ohio, or the Smithsonian Institute.