Tom Brady is not present for today's celebration of the Super Bowl champion Patriots at the White House with President Donald Trump. Brady said that he is dealing with "personal matters."
"Thank you to the president for hosting this honorary celebration and for supporting our team for as long as I can remember," Brady said in a statement. "In light of some recent development, I am unable to attend today's ceremony, as I am attending to some personal family matters."
Brady did not go into specifics, but it is thought to be related to his mother - who is battling cancer.
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It's highly unlikely that Brady's absence has anything to do with his relationship to former teammate Aaron Hernandez, who is said to have committed suicide Wednesday morning in his prison cell in Shirley, Massachusetts.
According to Hernandez, of all the Patriots' teammates he had - he was closest with Brady.
"The closest I was with was probably Brady and whom I love to death and always will and only hope the best for them," Hernandez wrote in a December 2015 letter to a female pen pal (letter obtained by TMZ Sports). "But was cool with Julez, Branch (I f***cked with and got mad love for) and 'the BEST TE ever to walk on a football field' Gronk!"
Brady obviously kept his distance from Hernandez since his initial arrest in 2013, and has not elaborated on his relationship with the former tight end since.
Hernandez shredded owner Robert Kraft in the letter in which he praised Brady, saying he was "fake ass non-loyal Kraft, who told me he loved me every time he seen me but obviously shows his word ain't sh*t."
Hernandez claimed to still follow the Patriots in prison and "watched every game faithfully cheering them on."
The timing of everything is extremely strange, given that the Patriots are being honored today at the White House with Trump, who is close with Kraft and Brady.