Former All-Pro defensive tackle Gerald McCoy has been playing in the NFL since 2010, and the number 93 has always meant something special to him. He's been sporting the number ever since his time in college at Oklahoma and was lucky enough to have the number availible for his rookie season in 2010 when the Tampa Bay Buccaneers selected him with the third-overall pick.
"Hey, listen, that 50 is cute, but what does your legacy mean to you? I've been wearing 93 since college so, when I got to the Carolina Panthers, I wanted 93, but, it didn't cost me 50. It cost me 250! Hey, listen, I wasn't gonna do it, but my wife said that's your legacy."
Gerald McCoy wrecked havoc on offensive lines for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers from 2010-2018. During that span, he made six straight Pro Bowls from 2012-2017, three All-Pro teams (two second teams, one first team), and had 54.5 sacks for the Buccaneers.
On 20 May 2019, he was released by the Buccaneers after spending nine seasons with them. On 3 June 2019, he signed with the Carolina Panthers.
Upon arriving in Carolina, Gerald McCoy's lifelong number of 93 was already taken by Kyle Love. Love seemed to be evenly fond of the number since he demanded a lot of money for it.
Although it cost McCoy $250,000, he got his number back and was even voted team captain for the year. In his lone season in Carolina, he totaled 37 tackles, 5 sacks, and 2 pass breakups in 16 games.
After playing a single season in Carolina, he missed most of the last two years due to injury while playing for the Dallas Cowboys and Las Vegas Raiders.
Gerald McCoy isn't the only one willing to pay for a number
Players paying other players for jersey numbers is common in the NFL. Gerald McCoy referenced the 50 in the video to Jets rookie Sauce Gardner paying $50,000 to D.J. Reed for the number one.
Other notable players who paid teammates for jersey numbers include Eli Manning, Donovan McNabb, Darrelle Revis, and Eric Decker.
Eli Manning offered Jeff Feagles a one-week paid vacation to Florida for the No. 10 upon arriving in the NFL.
Donovan McNabb paid Vikings punter Chris Kluwe $5,000 for the No. 5 when he arrived in Minnesota. McNabb donated $5,000 to Kluwe's favorite charity.
Darrelle Revis paid safety Mark Barron $50,000 for the No. 24 when he arrived in Tampa Bay with the Buccaneers.
Eric Decker paid tight end Jeff Cumberland $25,000 plus a steak dinner for No. 87 when he signed with the New York Jets.
I guess sometimes love can come at a price and these NFL players are willing to spend thousands on the numbers that they love.
Quotes- Gerald McCoy on NFL Total Access
Q. Is $250,000 too much for a jersey number?
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