New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft has put his Super Bowl LI championship ring up for bid to benefit the All In Challenge, which aims to be the largest digital fundraiser in history by raising tens of millions of dollars to feed those in need.
The winner also will receive a personal visit with Kraft in his Gillette Stadium office, with the team sending its private plane to bring to town the new owner of the ring if he or she is not within driving distance.
"What could I do that would be special? I've been thinking about it for weeks," Kraft said in a video posted on social media. "I finally thought about our experience in Super Bowl LI against the Atlanta Falcons. We were down 28-3 [in the third quarter] and had 99.6% [odds] to lose. And we came back, and we won.
"And I thought about what is going on at this time and wanted to give something of extreme value in support of our health care workers. So I thought it would be good to give this ring, our fifth Super Bowl win, because it showed how we came back."
After Kraft's announcement at 6 p.m. ET Sunday, the auction opened at $75,000. By noon on Monday, the bidding had reached $500,000. The auction is scheduled to extend over the next 11 days.
Kraft was asked to participate in the All In Challenge by his friend Michael Rubin, the founder and executive chairman of retailer Fanatics, who created the fundraiser that has raised $38 million as of Sunday night, according to its website.
In his video message, Kraft said: "We're the greatest country in the world, with the greatest people, who feel a sense of team and work together in the toughest times. So I want to give this ring to someone who will be worthy enough to bid it up, so we can get meals to all these people who are hurting badly at this time."