Maurice Jones-Drew wore No. 21 in high school and at UCLA, but when he got to the NFL, an ex-teammate asked for an enormous payment in return for the number, he says.
Jones told the story on SportsCenter this morning (via ProFootballTalk):
“There was a guy by the name of Terry Cousin who had 21 in Jacksonville. I asked him politely, ‘Can you just allow me to have the number? It’s been in my family for a long time.’ He said, ‘For a small price.’ I’m thinking he’s going to say, like, dinner, going to say, like, a couple bucks. He said $200,000 and you can have it,” Jones-Drew recalled.
Players pay for jersey numbers all the time, but usually for more modest sums. In 2004, Giants punter Jeff Feagles gave his No. 10 to Eli Manning in exchange for a week-long trip to Florida.
Jones will finally get to wear No. 21 this year when he suits up for the Raiders.
-- Brendan Maloy