Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady passes against the Chicago Bears on Sunday at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Fla. Photo by Steve Nesius/UPI | License Photo
MIAMI, Oct. 25 (UPI) -- The football from Tom Brady's 600th career touchdown pass, given to a fan and returned to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback, is worth between $500,000 and $1 million, several auction houses said.
The fan who returned the football, St. Petersburg, Fla., resident Byron Kennedy, told CBS Tampa on Monday that the Buccaneers gave him a replacement game ball and a $1,000 gift certificate to the team store in exchange for the ball.
"If Tom Brady's 600th touchdown pass football sold today, it could be [purchased for] $500,000 to $750,000, or even as much as $1 million, given all the hype around Brady," Lelands director of acquisitions Jordan Gilroy told UPI on Monday.
Ezra Levine, the CEO of Collectable, a sports memorabilia investment platform, told UPI that he believes the ball is worth between $500,000 to $750,000, but it wouldn't surprise him if it sold for $1 million.
Ken Goldin, the founder of Goldin Auctions, tweeted Sunday that the football is worth a minimum of $500,000 and "possibly much more." Goldin also called Kennedy's exchange with the Buccaneers a "bad" deal.
Kennedy, 29, told CBS he "isn't sure what [else] could be coming" from the Buccaneers.
The ball from Brady's first touchdown pass sold for nearly $430,000 at auction at Lelands on June 4. Brady threw that score to former wide receiver Terry Glenn in a New England Patriots win over the San Diego Chargers on Oct. 14, 2001, in Foxborough, Mass.
Brady threw a 9-yard pass to wide receiver Mike Evans for his 600th career touchdown toss in the Buccaneers 38-3 win over the Chicago Bears on Sunday in Tampa. The first-quarter score made Brady the first player in NFL history to reach the milestone.
Evans dropped the ball and flexed to celebrate the touchdown. He then grabbed the ball, reached into the end zone stands and handed it to Kennedy, who was wearing a replica of his No. 13 jersey.
"Giving it up was tough," Kennedy told the Tampa Bay Times. "The [Buccaneers staff member] came over and asked for it. What am I going to do, say no to Tom Brady?"
Kennedy said he told the Buccaneers employee "no" twice and that the team first offered him a signed jersey in exchange for the ball. He said he had "no idea" the score was Brady's 600th career touchdown pass.
Brady told reporters at his postgame news conference that he put the ball in his bag. He said the Buccaneers will give Kennedy a helmet, a couple of jerseys and some other stuff."
"Mike [Evans] gave it away and said 'I'm sorry, man,'" Brady said. "I don't keep too many things [from football]. In that circumstance, I felt like that one might be a good one to keep."
Brady completed 20 of 36 passes for 211 yards and four scores in Sunday's victory. He leads the NFL with 2,275 passing yards and 21 touchdown passes this season. Brady completed 67% of his throws with just three interceptions through his first seven games of 2021.
The Buccaneers (6-1) face the New Orleans Saints (3-2) at 4:25 p.m. EDT Sunday at the Caesars Superdome in New Orleans.