Plenty of bad teams have needs at wide receiver, but that is hardly unique to this 2022 NFL Draft.

The Houston Texans and the Atlanta Falcons, for instance, just need good players at any position.

Elsewhere, the Jacksonville Jaguars, the New York Jets and the Chicago Bears are attempting to build around young quarterbacks, perhaps optimistically hoping to follow the example of the Cincinnati Bengals – who took Joe Burrow and the 2021 WR1 Ja'Marr Chase all the way to the Super Bowl.

The upcoming draft is a little different, though, in that at least two teams with far more realistic title ambitions will be targeting the brightest and best receivers another deep class has to offer.

Both the Green Bay Packers and the Kansas City Chiefs have two first-round picks; particularly in the case of the Packers, they badly need them.

Aaron Rodgers is back for another year, but Davante Adams is not. Adams – who was stunningly traded to the Las Vegas Raiders, where he was given a lucrative contract – accounted for 30.6 per cent of the Packers' catches and 34.3 per cent of their receiving yards last season. He leaves a huge hole.

Allen Lazard and Randall Cobb are returning and will have big roles to play, but Marquez Valdes-Scantling – the Packers' deep-ball option, with the greatest average depth of target in the NFL in consecutive seasons – is also gone.

The Packers are only too aware of what can happen when quarterback Rodgers is not backed in the first round of the draft, so it would be no great surprise to see two leading wideouts head to Green Bay.

The Chiefs are in a similar position, having also traded their dominant receiver and allowed another team – the Miami Dolphins – to pay Tyreek Hill. Only Adams (47) has caught more touchdown passes than Hill (43) since Patrick Mahomes' debut on New Year's Eve 2017.

Although Mahomes does have a leading tight end to fall back on in Travis Kelce, the Chiefs' work so far in this offseason – including bringing in Valdes-Scantling – does not quite look to have restored their offense to its former glories. Especially in the highly competitive AFC West that Adams now occupies.

Finding a player of the ilk of Adams or Hill is a tall order, but the Chiefs, like the Packers, have to try. So, who are the pass catchers under consideration in the first round?

Jameson Williams

On pure talent, Williams – who had 79 catches for 1,572 yards and 15 TDs in 2021 – should be gone long before the Packers or the Chiefs are on the clock. But an ACL tear in January might see him fall just a little further.

There is not a statistic that reflects poorly on Williams, although he is of interest primarily due to the remarkable speed that makes him an elite separator, much like Hill. At Alabama, the transfer from Ohio State had a burn rate of 74.6 per cent, winning his matchup with a defender on almost three-quarters of his targets and recording 19.3 burn yards per target – both well clear of his fellow first-round candidates, as he was in getting open on 86.0 per cent of targets.

Hill (70.8 per cent) ranked fourth in the NFL last year for burn rate and was open on 82.7 per cent of targets.

Crucially, heading into the NFL, Williams showed himself to be capable of operating either out wide or in the slot. The 21-year-old's burn rate playing inside was 77.5 per cent, actually up on his 73.0 per cent playing as an outside receiver.

Garrett Wilson

Williams left Ohio State having found himself behind two receivers who may go in the first round this year – including Wilson, who is rivalling Williams for WR1 in a number of mock drafts.

Wilson had 70 catches for 1,058 yards and 12 TDs last year and also does not lack for speed, running a 4.38 40-yard dash at the NFL Scouting Combine. His calling cards, however, are the lower-body flexibility, foot quickness, and route-running savvy that propelled him to 15.1 yards per reception and allowed him to register a burn on 71.6 per cent of his targets.

Of the two Ohio State receivers on this list – we'll come on to the other – Wilson was less of a deep-ball threat, with his average depth of target 11.3 yards.

That is far from an issue for a team looking for a primary option, however, instead showing the variety that was asked of Adams (9.4 yards) and Hill (10.3 yards) in 2021.

Chris Olave

Completing the trio who were Buckeye team-mates for two seasons is Olave, who also shared touches with Wilson last year, even if they were tasked with different roles.

Olave was targeted on just 26.9 per cent of his routes, compared to 30.6 per cent for Wilson, but that was because he often provided the deep threat.

His average depth of target was 14.3 yards in 2021 and had been a huge 18.9 yards in his previous full season in 2019, third-most among Power 5 receivers. Perhaps he makes more sense for the Packers, who have just lost Valdes-Scantling, than for the Chiefs, who have just signed him.

Either way, this is a role Olave relishes, catching 13 TD passes last season to boost him to 35 across a four-year college career, the most in Ohio State history. A smooth and, like Wilson, detailed route-runner who tracks the ball extremely well, Wilson would surely thrive immediately if paired with Rodgers. 

Treylon Burks

If Olave does not fit the bill for either the Packers or the Chiefs, Burks might, for his game is completely different to the man from Ohio State.

Burks' average depth of target last year was just 9.4 yards as he was regularly deployed out of the backfield by Arkansas, who consistently got the ball in his hands through screen passes and designed hand-offs. 

Part of their reason for doing so was the threat Burks poses in the open field. He averaged 9.27 yards after the catch in 2021 – more than Williams' 9.16.

Burks far outperformed his 7.96 expected yards per target and recorded 14.08 burn yards per target, making excellent use of his combination of physicality and play speed that was not reflected by his 4.55 40-yard dash. 

Able to win downfield by relying on his frame and his route-running ability, Burks may possess the most varied skill set of any receiver in the draft, having registered 38 carries across three seasons with the Razorbacks and drawing comparisons to San Francisco 49ers 'wide back' Deebo Samuel.

If he can be that sort of player in the NFL, Burks works for the Packers, the Chiefs or just about anybody.

Jahan Dotson

While some on this list are worth considering for their physical attributes alone, it is Dotson's ball skills that make him stand out.

His catch rating – measured between 0 and 1 based on how well a receiver successfully catches throws that are considered catchable – was an outstanding 0.978 in 2021. He dropped only a single pass.

Reflecting on an incredible one-handed catch against Ohio State in 2020, the Penn State star said: "I approach that [ball] as a million dollars. It's a million dollars in the air. If you want it, you go get it." Dotson will make plenty of money in the NFL if he continues to rein in similar passes.

Dotson was not outstanding at beating defenders (63.8 per cent) or getting open (76.6 per cent) last season but still caught 12 TD passes on a Penn State team that struggled amid sub-par quarterback play in 2021.

Drake London

Now, the Packers and the Chiefs will not be looking at London as a like-for-like replacement for Adams or Hill.

Finding a comparison for London is not an easy task, as few players are blessed with his blend of size and fluidity as a route-runner. 

London is 6ft 4in but just 213lbs and initially played basketball as well as football at USC.

A broken ankle meant he did not run a 40-yard dash at either the NFL Combine or his pro day, but his speed is not considered to be anything special – not that it matters.

Despite getting open on just 67.2 per cent of his targets in 2021, he beat his defender in 71.3 per cent of matchups, speaking to the ease with which he can change direction. 

"I really don't have to blow by guys to catch the ball," he said. "I can, but I don't have to."

There were five drops, but London faced a huge number of contested catches and usually came out on top thanks to long arms and considerable wingspan.

He will need a quarterback who will trust him to come away with the ball even if he is not open, as was the case last season when he was targeted on a mammoth 42.4 per cent of his routes.

All-Pro wide receiver Deebo Samuel has requested a trade from the San Francisco 49ers.

Samuel is entering the final year of his rookie contract and the Niners had been expected to attempt to tie him down to a long-term deal.

However, multiple reports claim Samuel is refusing to engage in discussions over a lucrative extension and is instead determined to force his way out.

According to NFL Media's Ian Rapoport, Samuel requested a trade over a week ago, with his dissatisfaction not solely tied to financial demands - he is said to want a contract in the region of $25million a year - but also with how is used in the 49ers' offense.

In addition to making 77 catches for 1,405 yards and six touchdowns – averaging a league-leading 18.2 yards per reception – in 2021, Samuel also carried the ball 59 times for 365 yards and eight touchdowns, breaking Eric Metcalf's record (six) for most rushing touchdowns by a wide receiver in a single season, set in 1989.

Samuel labelled himself a 'wide back' when asked to define his position, and his ability to do damage out of the backfield and as a wide receiver proved critical as he played a pivotal role in the Niners' surge to the NFC Championship Game last season.

However, Samuel appears keen to be used in an offense that will lean more heavily on his skills as a traditional receiver and avoid absorbing the extra physical punishment that comes with often being used as a de facto running back.

The 2019 second-round pick will have interest from around the NFL, but it remains to be seen whether the Niners will be willing to facilitate a trade.

Should a deal with another team fail to materialise prior to next week's 2022 NFL Draft, then Samuel will likely remain a Niner, with San Francisco almost certain to want to recoup assets that would allow them to immediately fill the void he would leave.

Sam Darnold was confirmed as the Carolina Panthers' starting quarterback for 2022, although offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo quickly clarified his comments.

Former third overall pick Darnold joined the Panthers from the New York Jets ahead of last season but again struggled.

In 12 games, he completed just 59.9 per cent of his passes for 2,527 passing yards, only nine touchdowns and 13 interceptions.

Darnold did just about beat out competition from the returning Cam Newton to end the year as the starter, but the Panthers have the sixth pick in the first round of the upcoming NFL Draft – and a second return for Newton has not been ruled out.

However, incoming OC McAdoo seemingly announced Darnold's role for 2022 when he answered "yes" to a query as to whether he would be the starter – the sort of question other Panthers have skirted around.

The former New York Giants head coach revealed a big part of his decision to come to Carolina was to work with Darnold, yet he then acknowledged the situation could still change.

Coach Matt Rhule still has a say, McAdoo explained, but: "The way it is in the building right now, Sam is our starting quarterback."

McAdoo added: "One of the things I've been working on is being better talking to you people [media], so announcing the starting quarterback here I just put my foot in my mouth.

"That wasn't something I should have said."

Triple Crown wide receiver Cooper Kupp insists he is looking only for a "fair" deal with the Los Angeles Rams and is not worried about "trying to beat anybody" during a stunning offseason for players at his position.

Kupp was the NFL's dominant wideout last year in a title-winning season for the Rams.

The fifth-year star led the league in receptions (145), receiving yards (1,947) and receiving touchdowns (16), also setting clear career bests in each category, to be named the Offensive Player of the Year.

He continued that form into the playoffs, with 33 receptions for 478 yards and six TDs, including two scores in the Super Bowl win over the Cincinnati Bengals.

Kupp, who is under contract through 2023, should therefore be in line for a big pay day given the deals handed out to his fellow receivers since the end of last season.

Davante Adams left the Green Bay Packers to land a five-year, $140million contract with the Las Vegas Raiders, before Tyreek Hill similarly departed the Kansas City Chiefs and signed for four years on a $120m deal with the Miami Dolphins.

Stefon Diggs stayed on the Buffalo Bills but was also rewarded and is set to earn $96m over four years.

Kupp, who outperformed all three players in 2021, will make just $14.9m next season, yet he insists he is not concerned by what others are doing.

"I don't think that's really kind of the approach that I take," he said.

"I definitely think there's a place you want to be. There's a place that you feel like is fair, a place for me and for this organisation.

"I'm not trying to beat anybody. I'm not trying to compare myself to anyone else. It's more about being in a place that's just right for both sides."

Other star wide receivers, including Deebo Samuel of the San Francisco 49ers, are skipping on-field offseason workouts as they pursue lucrative contracts.

But Kupp is not following suit, explaining: "I think it's important to be here, be around the guys and be around this team.

"The goal at the end of the day is to win a world title. Whatever is going to get us in a place where we can compete for another world title, put us in a better position where we can be a better football team, that's the goal.

"I think the best thing I can do is to be a part of that."

Tom Brady knows he cannot play forever but feels for now there is "still a place for me on the field".

Legendary NFL quarterback Brady is returning for another year with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers despite announcing his retirement earlier in the offseason.

The seven-time Super Bowl champion has a single season remaining on his contract in Tampa.

Brady is 44 and will be 45 by the time the 2022 season starts. Only two quarterbacks have played in the NFL at a greater age, and Brady will surpass Steve DeBerg (44 years and 342 days) when he next takes to the field.

George Blanda's record (48 years and 95 days) remains some way ahead, however, especially as Brady acknowledges the end of his extraordinary 318-game career is nearing.

"I knew my body, physically, could still do what it could do and obviously I have a love for the game," Brady told ESPN, explaining his return. "I think I'll always have a love for the game.

"I do think physically I'll be able to do it. I just felt like there was still a place for me on the field.

"At the end of the day, I just love the competition on the field, and last year was a very bitter ending to a season and we've got to make a lot of corrections to try to improve and put ourselves in a better position to succeed moving forward.

"I know I don't have a lot left, I really do. I know I'm at the end of my career. I wish you could go forever, but it's just not [possible] and football comes at too high of a cost now. My kids are getting older and it's just getting harder and harder to miss these things.

"But I wanted to give myself and my team-mates and our organisation another incredible opportunity to accomplish something that we'd all be very proud of."

Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes was shocked when his top wide receiver, Tyreek Hill, was traded away to the Miami Dolphins.

In his six seasons in Kansas City, Hill caught 479 passes for 6,630 yards and 56 touchdowns, emerging as arguably the most dangerous receiver in the entire NFL with his unique speed and explosiveness.

Hill signed a three-year, $54million extension with the Chiefs in 2019, but after recent extensions and signings – including a 10-year, $450m contract for Mahomes, and a four-year, $80m deal for defensive lineman Chris Jones – it appeared unrealistic that Kansas City would be able to afford his demands while adhering to the salary cap.

In March, the Las Vegas Raiders made Davante Adams the highest-paid receiver in league history with a five-year, $140m deal and six days later, Hill reset the market after being traded to the Dolphins for five draft picks, including a first and second round pick this year.

Hill's four-year deal has him earning an average of $30m per year, which is a number usually reserved for quarterbacks.

Speaking to the media on Monday as the Chiefs began their offseason program, Mahomes said that while he knew it was a possibility, he was still shocked to see Hill leave.

"My initial reaction was a little bit of shock,'' he said.

"Even though you knew this was a possibility, [losing] a guy you had played with and built a friendship with over the last six years, it was definitely something [where] you didn't want him to leave more for being able to hang out in the locker room and do that stuff more than the actual on-the-field stuff.

"But you're happy for him. Obviously, he got a great contract, he's back where he has a house in the offseason around a lot of his family. I wish the best for him."

As for the problems Hill's departure creates for the Chiefs, Mahomes conceded they will have to do things a little differently.

"We've just got to keep rolling," he said. "That's just how it is in this league. 

"It's a business as much as it is about friendships. We know in order to have success in this league we have to keep evolving and keep getting better. 

"So I got with those new receivers as quickly as possible and tried to build that [chemistry] so we could have success when we get going this year.

"We'll have to find production in different ways than we did last year, because Tyreek was such a big part of our offense.

"I think you've seen in games when we haven't had Tyreek, or we haven't had certain people, other guys have stepped up and made plays happen, and I expect that to happen this year, as well.''

Denzel Ward will become the highest-paid cornerback in NFL history after agreeing to a five-year contract extension with the Cleveland Browns.

Ward was drafted fourth overall by Cleveland in 2018 and has gone on to make the Pro Bowl on two occasions.

He has played 52 times for the Browns across four seasons with the franchise. He made 34 tackles and three interceptions in the 2021 campaign.

ESPN – citing Tory Dandy of CAA Sports, who negotiated the deal – reported on Monday that Ward had agreed fresh terms with the Browns, with the extension worth $100.5million. Of that, $71.25m is guaranteed.

The 24-year-old's average annual salary of $20.1million moves him above Jalen Ramsey of the Los Angeles Rams, the previously highest-paid CB in the league.

Ward's new deal runs through the 2027 season though he remains under contract for $13.3m in 2022 after Cleveland exercised their fifth-year option on his old deal.

Ward joined the Browns in the same draft as quarterback Baker Mayfield, but the latter is expected to be traded before the start of the new season.

The Match will return in 2022 and this time it will pit two of the NFL's greatest quarterbacks of all time against two well on their way to assuming the same title.

Aaron Rodgers and Tom Brady were on opposing teams in The Match IV last year, Rodgers and Bryson DeChambeau beating Brady and Phil Mickelson, but the two future Hall of Famers will team up this time around.

Indeed, Brady and Rodgers will face off against two quarterbacks who are rapidly developing a compelling rivalry of their own on the field in Kansas City Chiefs star Patrick Mahomes and Josh Allen of the Buffalo Bills.

Mahomes and Allen faced off in one of the best playoff games in NFL history last season as the Chiefs fought back to beat the Bills in the AFC Divisional Round 42-36 in overtime, Kansas City having led a game-tying field goal drive in just 13 seconds to force the extra period.

There is no doubt they are the future of the NFL, but the June 1 meeting in Las Vegas with Brady and Rodgers will mark the first time their golf game will be on show for a worldwide audience.

Announcing the matchup on Twitter, Brady made it clear he and Rodgers are ready to strike a blow for the NFL's old guard.

He wrote: "We tried to make this a tag team cage match but the lawyers said our contracts wouldn't allow it… #CapitalOnesTheMatch is back, June 1st. Let's kick their a**."

Marshawn Lynch feels he has achieved "something special" by becoming a minority investor in the Seattle Kraken alongside Macklemore.

Former NFL running back Lynch spent the best part of his career with the Seattle Seahawks.

He was part of the Seahawks team that won Super Bowl XLVIII, scoring a rushing touchdown in the title game as Seattle beat the Denver Broncos.

Lynch had led the NFL in rushing TDs (12) in the regular season and did so again the following year (13), again scoring in the Super Bowl but this time in a defeat to the New England Patriots.

The five-time Pro Bowler announced his retirement after the 2015 season but returned to the NFL and eventually the Seahawks, finishing his career in Seattle in 2019.

And now Lynch is again part of the sports scene in the city, with he and rapper Macklemore – a Seattle native – welcomed on board by Kraken owner Seattle Hockey Partners.

"I've been a part of a lot of things, but this is something I never would have imagined," Lynch wrote on his Twitter page.

"As a young hyena I always dreamed of playing on a professional team but owning one is something special.

"Thank you @SeattleKraken, shout out to @macklemore. Seattle, I'm here. Stand Up!!!"

The Kraken are in their inaugural season in the NHL but sit bottom of the Western Conference's Pacific Division with a 24-44-6 record.

Deebo Samuel will reportedly skip the San Francisco 49ers' on-field offseason program as he seeks a contract extension from the team.

A report from ESPN's Adam Schefter said that Samuel, A.J. Brown of the Tennessee Titans and the Washington Commanders' Terry McLaurin will not take part in on-field drills as teams return for voluntary workouts in the coming days.

All three wide receivers are entering the final year of their rookie contract having been selected on day two of the 2019 NFL Draft.

Samuel was named a first-team All-Pro in 2021 after racking up 1,405 receiving yards and six touchdowns while also thriving running the ball out of the backfield.

He averaged 6.2 yards per carry in finishing with 365 yards on 59 attempts, with his eight regular-season rushing touchdowns an NFL record for a wide receiver – two clear of Eric Metcalf's previous benchmark of six for the 1989 Cleveland Browns.

His unique role in the offense, with Samuel describing himself as a 'wide back', will undoubtedly have complicated negotiations, which have so far shown no sign of delivering a resolution.

Samuel is said to be looking for a contract in the region of $25million a year, having seen the wide receiver market explode this offseason amid a flurry of high-profile trades and lucrative free-agent contracts.

Injuries prevented Brown from recording a third successive 1,000-yard season in 2021, but his 24 receiving touchdowns are the eighth-most among wideouts since 2019.

McLaurin has 16 in that time, recording a second consecutive 1,000-yard campaign for Washington last season as they failed to repeat their NFC East triumph of 2020.

Deebo Samuel has claimed he has received death threats and been targeted with racial slurs from fans over his contract negotiations with the San Francisco 49ers.

Wide receiver Samuel is entering the final year of his contract with the 49ers having enjoyed a career year in 2021.

He was named a first-team All-Pro after racking up 1,405 receiving yards and six touchdowns while also thriving running the ball out of the backfield.

Samuel averaged 6.2 yards per carry in finishing with 365 yards on 59 attempts, with his eight regular-season rushing touchdowns an NFL record for a wide receiver – two clear of Eric Metcalf's previous benchmark of six for the 1989 Cleveland Browns.

His unique role in the offense, with Samuel describing himself as a 'wide back', will undoubtedly have complicated negotiations, which have so far shown no sign of delivering a resolution. Samuel recently deleted all references to the 49ers on his Instagram page.

The 2019 second-round pick is said to be looking for a contract in the region of $25million a year, having seen the wide receiver market explode this offseason amid a flurry of high-profile trades and lucrative free-agent contracts.

In a video on Instagram, Samuel made it clear the appalling messages he says he has received on social media have not affected him.

"For all y'all fans that's in the DM, sending death threats and racial stuff, that don't bother me," Samuel said.

"Y'all the same ones that was just hoo-rahing and 'go Deebo!', now y'all want to send death threats and all racial stuff, it don't bother me, I'm cool, I'm chilling, I'm happy."

 

Dallas Cowboys cornerback Kelvin Joseph was an "unarmed" passenger in the vehicle from which the fatal gunshot that killed a 20-year-old man was fired, according to his attorney.

Cameron Ray died on March 18 after being shot outside a Dallas area nightclub following an apparent altercation between two groups.

ESPN reported on Thursday that local police wanted to speak to Joseph, 22, in connection with the incident.

In a statement to the Dallas Morning News on Friday, Joseph's attorney Barry Sorrels said the Cowboys player was present but not involved in the violence.

"Kelvin Joseph did not shoot Cameron Ray," Sorrels said. "Mr. Ray's death is a tragedy, and Kelvin extends his deepest condolences for the family's loss. 

"On the night of March 17, Kelvin was unarmed and was not looking for violence. He found himself in a situation that escalated without his knowledge or consent. 

"Along with condolences to the Ray family, Kelvin apologises to the Dallas community for being anywhere near this type of incident. The investigation is ongoing, and we intend to respect the process."

The Cowboys also released a statement confirming their knowledge of the situation.

"The Dallas Cowboys are aware of the tragic incident that occurred in Dallas on March 18," it read.

"First and foremost, our hearts go out to Mr. Ray's family and loved ones. 

"The organisation is aware of Kelvin Joseph's possible connection to this incident. We are in contact with Dallas law enforcement and have alerted the NFL office."

Stephon Gilmore is on the move again and this time the former NFL Defensive Player of the Year is joining the Indianapolis Colts.

Cornerback Gilmore will receive a two-year contract worth $23million, of which $14million is guaranteed, ESPN and NFL.com reported on Friday.

It means his stay with the Carolina Panthers has proved short-lived, after he left the New England Patriots to move to Charlotte last October.

Gilmore visited the Colts on Wednesday, with the 31-year-old five-time Pro Bowl star leaving Carolina after playing just eight games for the franchise.

The 10th overall pick in 2012, when he was drafted by the Buffalo Bills, Gilmore moved to New England in March 2017 and helped the Patriots win the Super Bowl in his second season.

Gilmore was crucial in that Super Bowl success, with his interception clinching New England's 13-3 victory over the Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl LIII, a year after they were beaten in the championship game by the Philadelphia Eagles.

He took Defensive Player of the Year honours in 2019, and after playing 11 games in the following season he moved on to the Panthers.

Sidelined by a torn quad initially, Gilmore was activated in Week 8 and started three of the remaining games as Carolina finished the 2021 season with seven straight losses.

Police want to speak with Dallas Cowboys cornerback Kelvin Joseph regarding a shooting murder that took place in the Dallas area in March, according to reports.

Joseph, a 2020 second-round pick by the Cowboys, allegedly appeared to be part of a group that was involved in an altercation with another group containing 20-year-old victim Cameron Ray.

Footage shows gunshots being fired out of an SUV at Ray and his friends as they walked back to their car after the initial scuffle.

One of the people seen in the video was allegedly wearing a chain with the initials YKDV. Joseph goes by the name YKDV Bossman Fat in his aspiring rap career.

The Cowboys did not have an official comment, however ESPN is reporting that the team have spoken with Joseph and are encouraging him to cooperate with police and disclose what he knows about the case.

Detective Tonya McDaniel told KDFW that Ray's group was not responsible for the initial incident, which led to the shooting.

The $518,000 sale of Tom Brady's 'last' touchdown pass football has been mutually voided after the greatest quarterback in NFL history reneged on retirement.

In what seemed like an unbelievable stroke of misfortune for the buyer, Brady spectacularly announced his return to the game less than 24 hours after the purchase was finalised, although money was yet to exchange hands.

Brady's decision not to retire came 40 days after initially announcing his playing career was over in late-January, causing chaos in the sports collectible world.

But the anonymous buyer has been spared the devastating blow as Lelands Auctions – who facilitated the sale – announced on Thursday that the purchase had been voided by a mutual agreement.

"We wanted to do the right thing here," Mike Heffner, president and partner at Lelands, said.

"It's the most unique situation that we'll probably ever encounter in our lifetimes – at least when it comes to sports memorabilia. We're still not to the end of the book yet; we've written a chapter."

While the ball may not be Brady's last ever touchdown pass, it is for the time being, and Heffner said the owner still plans on selling it privately through Lelands.

"All parties were waiting to see how it played out," he said.

"Tom Brady, let's face it, is kind of unpredictable these days. Until he throws that first touchdown pass in September, this ball is still the record."

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