CINCINNATI — The NFL is expected to loosen restrictions on jersey numbers later this month. The new proposal needs 24 owners [out of 32] to be in favor of the change.
League officials expect the proposal to pass according to Peter King of NBC Sports.
If passed, the new rule would allow defensive backs and linebackers to wear any number from 1 to 49. Running backs, fullbacks, tight ends and wide receivers could all wear 1 to 49 and 80 to 89.
This wouldn't change for quarterbacks, punters and kickers. They would still be required to wear numbers 1 to 19. Linemen would still wear 50 to 79, and defensive linemen and linebackers could also wear 90 to 99.
The potential rule change has Bengals wide receiver Tee Higgins thinking about switching numbers. The 22-year-old sent a tweet on Thursday about potentially going back to the number 5, which is what he wore during his three seasons at Clemson.
If Higgins does change numbers, that means the iconic "85" will be available once again.
Some of the greatest wide receivers in Bengals' history have worn 85, including Isaac Curtis and Chad Johnson. Higgins has a tough decision to make, but he's one of many players that could switch numbers if the proposal passes.
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