Mark Wahlberg cheers Tom Brady's Obama snub
© Getty Images

Actor Mark Wahlberg on Thursday applauded New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady’s decision to skip a White House ceremony with President Obama.

“He must have had something really important to do,” Wahlberg, a Boston native, said in a clip first published by TMZ.

“Family first,” he added of Brady’s decision. “He’ll be there next year.”

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The star quarterback was notably absent on Thursday as President Obama honored the Patriots for their Super Bowl XLIX victory last year. Team officials said Brady’s absence stemmed from family commitments.

Obama teased the players who did visit Thursday about the “Deflategate” scandal that marred their playoff run.

“I usually tell jokes at these events, but I was worried 11 of 12 of them would fall flat,” Obama joked to groans from the audience.

“The whole story got blown a little out of proportion,” he said, citing allegations the Patriots deflated footballs to beat the Indianapolis Colts in a playoffs matchup last year.

Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski returned fire with his own zinger after the event.

“Maybe the president was getting wasted, from his ‘Deflate’ joke,’ ” Gronkowski, a noted party animal, chided after the South Lawn ceremony.

Brady’s snub may stem from comments the White House made towards him during the “Deflategate” flap. White House press secretary Josh Earnest dismissed Brady’s performance at a press conference.

“The one thing I can tell you is that for years, it’s been clear there is no risk that I was going to take Tom Brady’s job as quarterback of the New England Patriots. But I can tell you that as of today, it’s pretty clear there’s no risk of him taking my job either,” Earnest quipped.

The Patriots defeated the Seattle Seahawks 28-24 on Feb. 1 in the Super Bowl. Their victory earned the team its fourth championship.