Colts’ D’Qwell Jackson wants Deflategate football back

Colts linebacker D'Qwell Jackson intercepted Tom Brady in the AFC championship, and he wants the ball began the entire Deflategate scandal returned to him.
Stew Milne/USA TODAY Sports

By Jason Rowan

When D’Qwell Jackson intercepted a Tom Brady pass early on in the second quarter of the AFC Championship Game, little did the Indianapolis Colts linebacker know that the ball that he brought to the sidelines to save as a memento would launch Deflategate and the months-long drama that dominated the headlines during the NFL offseason.

With the much ballyhooed rematch between the Colts and the New England Patriots slated for Sunday night, Colts players and coaches — not to mention their counterparts with the Patriots — are not surprisingly being inundated with questions about that fateful game in January, one in which Indy was throttled by a score of 45-7.

But as far as Jackson is concerned, all he wants to know is what happened to that ball after a Colts equipment manager took it from him and measured the air pressure, something that set into motion, whether deserved or not, one of the bigger scandals in NFL history.

As a Boston Globe report notes, 11 of the 12 Patriots balls were officially tested at halftime. The only ball that wasn’t was the one Jackson intercepted. And he wants it back.

“I have not received it. That’s the mystery ball,” he said. “If you could tell me where it is, you would do me a huge favor.”

Jackson’s role in the scandal receded into the background as the story broke open and the investigation continued. He admits that not only is he amazed of how things so quickly exploded, but how it is pretty interesting how he will always be a footnote in the sordid saga.

“Twenty years from now I’m sure people will still kind of flirt around with it, so I guess it will be cool,” he said. “Everything else that came out of that was nothing I had anything to do with. That’s above me. It wasn’t anything I had any part in.”

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