Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback and NFL legend Tom Brady stole the show at the White House celebration of his team's Super Bowl championship on Tuesday with digs at former president Donald Trump and his claims about the 2020 presidential election.
President Joe Biden was right at Brady's side, and dozens of teammates were right behind him as the winner of seven American football titles dished up a series of clearly rehearsed but cutting remarks sure to infuriate the Republican former president, whom Brady has described as a friend.
"Not a lot of people think that we could have won. In fact, I think about 40% of the people still don't think we won," Brady said of his team, which overcame setbacks early in their season to win Super Bowl LV in February following a year plagued by the coronavirus pandemic, and a clear joke about Trump's election claims.
Even Biden joined him in the joke and said", I understand that".
"You understand that Mr. President?" Brady asked.
"I understand that," Biden repeated, as several of the Buccaneers players and coaches broke into laughter.
Brady, 43, is the oldest quarterback to play in a Super Bowl. He also joked about the "Sleepy Joe" nickname that Trump derisively used for Biden on the campaign trail back in 2020.
He said that after a game last year in which he famously forgot it was fourth down, "they started calling me 'Sleepy Tom.' Why would they do that to me!"
Judges and courts in multiple states have tossed out dozens of cases claiming there is evidence of a rigged election, but Trump continues to insist the vote was "stolen" from him.
Tuesday's Super Bowl White House ceremony was the first of its kind since 2017. Buccaneers owner presented Biden with a team jersey bearing the number 46.
White House visits became political minefields for high-profile sports teams in the era of Trump, who has been friendly with Brady for years.
A red Trump campaign hat was photographed in Brady's locker in 2015 when the New York tycoon was running for president.
Brady subsequently distanced himself from political support for Trump but has said they are friends and have often golfed together.
The New England Patriots, who won multiple Super Bowls with Brady before he switched to the Buccaneers, declined a White House visit in 2019.