For Leonard Fournette, wearing the No. 7 at LSU just wasn't about the rich history of the number. Fournette grew up in the seventh ward in New Orleans, an area devastated by Hurricane Katrina and Fournette always wore the number growing up.
With the news that the NFL had relaxed its restrictions on jersey numbers for players, it was announced on Thursday that Fournette would be changing from No. 28 to No. 7 for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
"That's where I'm born and raised," Fournette said. "That's just me. That's what I represent. I'm so big on giving back to where I'm from and it really represents how special that place is to me. I'm just grateful. It was a special number to me in college, so I'm like why not wear it again?"
Fournette was drafted No. 4 by the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2016 but found his way to Tampa Bay a season ago and won a Super Bowl. He just recently signed a one-year extension with the Buccaneers after a strong postseason, capped off by an 89-yard performance in a win over Kansas City that included a touchdown.
While at LSU, Fournette became one of the most dominant players in college football while wearing the No. 7. He rushed for 3,830 yards and 40 touchdowns over his three-year career with the Tigers.
He was always viewed as the "guy" to run an offense through at LSU and even in Jacksonville. Signing with Tampa Bay was a humbling move for Fournette, who feels he showed great growth in his game as he enters his second season with the Buccaneers.
"Just blessed to have another opportunity, another chance to play the game that we love to play. This whole season was a learning experience for me to be honest," Fournette said before the playoffs.