Football is a game of thumbs and numbers.
If you’re an NFL fan, you might notice that something’s wrong when you watch games this season: receivers with single-digit numbers, running backs with numbers in the ’80s, tight ends with numbers in adolescents.
Your eyes are not fooling you: these are all legitimate numbers now for wide receivers, tight ends and full backs, with the NFL relaxing the rules on which group positions may carry certain numbers in the future. While it can be a little bewildering to watch, the reasoning behind the NFL’s first rule change since the 1970s is actually pretty good.
Here’s what you need to know about the NFL changes for the 2021 season:
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What is the new NFL number rule?
For the 2021 NFL season, several groups of positions – namely wide receivers, tight ends, running backs – are getting new slices of numbers, meaning the number options for an individual player have nearly tripled. .
Previously, only quarterbacks, bettors and kickers could have uniform single-digit numbers. Now that group has been expanded to include tight ends, wide receivers, running backs and defensive backs.
Here’s how the new number groups break down:
|Station group||Number of options||Previous number options|
|Ball carriers||1-49, 80-89||20-49|
|Wide receivers||1-49, 80-80||10-19, 80-89|
|Tight ends||1-49, 80-89||40-49, 80-89|
|Defensive line||50-79, 90-99||50-79, 90-99|
|Linebackers||1-59, 90-99||40-59, 90-99|
Why has the NFL changed the jersey numbers?
There are several reasons why the NFL decided to change the jersey number rules. The main reason, however, comes from the Kansas City team.
The size of the rosters (53 players in total, plus players from the practice squad) can make it difficult for teams to assign numbers to certain groups of positions, especially for teams that have more than a few numbers removed .
The Chiefs, who proposed the rule change, struck out four numbers in the 20-49 number range: this group of numbers was previously reserved for running backs, linebackers and backers.
With COVID-19 changing roster rules in 2020 to include expanded practice team rosters, limitations on number assignments have caused a problem for Chiefs and several other NFL teams, leading to the proposal. , which the owners approved earlier in 2021.
With the relaxed and widened numeric parentheses, this opens up several other groups of positions besides QB, bettor, and kicker to have single-digit numbers: Wide receivers, running backs, and tight ends have significantly expanded number options at the top. ‘to come up. The offensive and defensive lines, however, will not undergo any change. The same goes for punters, kickers and quarterbacks.
The change in numbers was not accepted by everyone: in fact, Tom Brady has been one of the rule’s most vocal critics. Brady – whether he’s just trolling in his old age or legitimately doesn’t like the rule change – thinks the rule might make things more difficult for infractions.
“Good luck trying to block the right people now !! !!” Brady wrote in his Instagram story when the rule change passed. “gonna do a lot of bad football.”
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How much does it cost to change an NFL jersey number?
Just like you just don’t get into Mordor, an NFL player just doesn’t change their number. The price to pay for an NFL player to change numbers is pretty steep, depending on the player.
In order for an NFL player to change his number for the upcoming season, he must buy back the existing inventory of retail-ready NFL jerseys; This means that any jersey ready for sale in a Dick’s Sporting Goods or Nike store must be purchased by the player.
Dalvin Cook, who wanted to change his number for the next NFL season, was charged with paying $ 1.5 million, the price of the jerseys remaining in stock across the country. That number has dissuaded Cook from wanting to change from his No.33, but it is expected to change for the 2022 NFL season.
If a player wishes to change his number for a subsequent season, with proper notification to the NFL, he can change his number without a problem.
NFL number changes
Here’s the full list of players, mostly wide receivers, who have changed their numbers for the upcoming season to take full advantage of the rules:
|Team||Player||Position||New number||Old number|
|Arizona Cardinals||Chase edmonds||RB||2||29|
|Arizona Cardinals||Isaiah Simmons||KG||9||48|
|Arizona Cardinals||Baker Buddha||S||3||32|
|Atlanta Falcons||Russell gage||WR||14||83|
|Baltimore Ravens||Marquise Brown||WR||5||15|
|Baltimore Ravens||Patrick queen||KG||6||48|
|Bison Tickets||Emmanuel Sanders||WR||1||17|
|Carolina Panthers||Dj moore||WR||2||12|
|Chicago Bear||Eddie jackson||S||4||39|
|Chicago Bear||Damien williams||RB||8||25|
|Chicago Bear||Javon wims||WR||15||83|
|Dallas Cowboys||Donovan wilson||S||6||37|
|Dallas Cowboys||Jaylon smith||KG||9||54|
|Denver Broncos||KJ Hamler||WR||1||13|
|Detroit Lions||Quinton Dunbar||Comics||1||22|
|Detroit Lions||Mike Ford||CB||2||38|
|Detroit Lions||Tyrell williams||WR||6||16|
|Detroit Lions||Jamie collins||KG||8||58|
|Indianapolis Colts||Parris campbell||WR||1||15|
|The Los Angeles Rams||DeSean Jackson||WR||1||ten|
|The Los Angeles Rams||Robert woods||WR||2||17|
|The Los Angeles Rams||Jordan fuller||S||4||32|
|The Los Angeles Rams||Darious williams||CB||11||31|
|The Los Angeles Rams||Jalen ramsey||CB||5||20|
|Miami dolphins||Albert Wilson||WR||2||15|
|Miami dolphins||Will fuller||WR||3||15|
|Miami dolphins||Lynn bowden||WR||6||15|
|Miami dolphins||Allen Hurns||WR||8||17|
|Miami dolphins||Noah Igbinoghene||CB||9||23|
|Minnesota Vikings||Patrick peterson||CB||7||21|
|New England Patriots||Jalen Mills||CB||2||21|
|New England Patriots||Ja’Whaun Bentley||CB||8||51|
|New England Patriots||Matt Judon||KG||9||99|
|New York Giants||Sterling shepard||WR||3||87|
|Philadelphia Eagles||Kill Darius||CB||2||24|
|Seattle Seahawks||Akhello Witherspoon||CB||2||23|
|Seattle Seahawks||Quandre Diggs||S||6||37|
|Seattle Seahawks||Carlos dunlap||EDGE||8||43|
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers||Leonard Fournette||RB||7||28|
|Titans of Tennessee||Julio Jones||WR||2||11|
Incoming rookies are the first class to benefit from the NFL jersey number change. Here are some top rookies taking advantage of the new numbers for the 2021 season:
|Arizona Cardinals||Zaven collins||KG||25|
|Atlanta Falcons||Kyle pitts||YOU||8|
|Carolina Panthers||Jaycee Horn||CB||8|
|Cincinnati Bengals||Ja’Marr Chase||WR||1|
|Cleveland browns||Jérémie Owusu-Koramoah||KG||28|
|Dallas Cowboys||Micah Parsons||KG||11|
|Denver Broncos||Patrick Surtain II||CB||2|
|Jacksonville Jaguars||Travis Etienne||RB||1|
|New York Jets||Elie Moore||WR||8|
|Philadelphia Eagles||DeVonta Smith||WR||6|
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers||Joe tryon shoyinka||KG||9|