Fact Check

Did Tom Brady Joke About Election During White House Visit?

Seven-time Super Bowl champion Tom Brady accepted an invitation to the White House for the first time since 2005.

Published Jul 20, 2021

 (Drew Angerer / Getty Images)
Image Via Drew Angerer / Getty Images
Super Bowl-winning quarterback Tom Brady joked about election denial during a White House ceremony, saying: "I think about 40 percent of people still don’t think we won .. You understand that, Mr. President?"

On July 20, 2021, NFL quarterback Tom Brady and his Tampa Bay Buccaneers teammates visited President Joe Biden at the White House to celebrate their Super Bowl victory earlier in the year.

The event was memorable for a few reasons. For one, it was the first time Brady visited the White House since 2005 (he didn't attend the ceremonies for his Super Bowl victories during the tenures of former presidents Barack Obama and Donald Trump). And two, Brady made a topical joke before presenting Biden with a jersey: "I think about forty percent of people still don't think we won ... "

This is a genuine quote from Brady. 

Brady spoke for a few minutes before he gifted a Buccaneers jersey to Biden. The seven-time champion spoke about team work and unity and hard work, but he also managed to offer up a few humorous lines. At one point, Brady referenced the number of people who continue to believe the falsehood that Biden did not win the 2020 presidential election, comparing it to the people who are in still in disbelief about the Buccaneers victory.

Later, Brady joked about how he was labeled "Sleepy Tom" after screwing up a play, an apparent reference to the "Sleepy Joe" nickname that former President Donald Trump bestowed on his political rival. 

Below is a transcript of Brady's remarks. The relevant passages are in bold:

MR. BRADY: Thank you, Mr. President. It’s certainly an honor to be here. Thank you very much for your hospitality your entire staff has given us today. I think what — behind me is an amazing group of players. We have a bunch of coaches and staff here sitting down.

And it was actually a very challenging season for a lot of reasons, but we bonded together, we worked really hard, we put all our individual agendas aside, and we came together as a team.

And sports has an amazing way of bringing people together. If you look at us, we’re all a little bit different ages. I’m a little older than most of them. But we come from a lot of different places across the country, a lot of different schools, a lot of different backgrounds, but we love each other; we’re committed to one another. And when you do that, amazing things happen.

And these guys are amazing group of men. It didn’t look great there at one point. We were seven and five, struggling a little bit, as the President alluded to. But we found our rhythm. We got on a roll.

Not a lot of people, you know, think that we could have won. And, in fact, I think about 40 percent of the people still don’t think we won.

THE PRESIDENT: I understand that. (Laughter.)

MR. BRADY: You understand that, Mr. President?

THE PRESIDENT: I understand that.

MR. BRADY: Yeah. And personally, you know, it’s nice for me to be back here. We had a game in Chicago where I forgot what down it was. I lost track of one down in 21 years of playing, and they started calling me “Sleepy Tom.” (Laughter.) Why would they do that to me?

THE PRESIDENT: I don’t know. (Laughter.)

MR. BRADY: So, it’s great to be — you know, we’re on the eve of football season. We start, tomorrow, practice. And we’re going to do everything we can to work to achieve another one of those Lombardi trophies.

It’s a different group of men. It’ll be a different challenge, but we’re excited for it. We’re excited for the opportunity to compete and work hard and show everyone what we’re made of.

So, we’re not going to throw the Super Bowl trophy this time, Cam, but we’re going to offer President Biden a special presentation from Mr. Glazer. And then we’re going to challenge 11 of us, 11 White House interns to game of football here on the lawn, and we intend to run it up on you guys, so — (laughter) — get ready to go. Thank you. (Applause.)

(The President is presented with a Buccaneers jersey.) (Applause.)

Here's a video of Brady's remarks:

Brady has won seven Super Bowl rings during his time in the NFL. While he's made a few appearances at the White House, this is his first visit since 2005. Brady previously said that family commitments prevented him from attending the ceremonies held by former Presidents Obama and Trump.

Dan Evon is a former writer for Snopes.

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