Why Tom Brady is strongly opposed to NFL jersey number rule


The NFL's loosened restrictions on jersey numbers has players on offense and defense alike salivating about switching to single digits.

But the league's elder statesman has a warning for the kids.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady used Instagram on Thursday to speak out against the NFL jersey number rule change, which allows offensive skill position players and defensive backs to wear Nos. 1 through 49 and 80 through 89 and linebackers to wear Nos. 1 through 59 and 90 through 99.

"Good luck trying to block the right people now!" Brady wrote on his Instagram story. “Going to make for a lot of bad football."

Quarterbacks and offensive linemen currently use defenders' jersey numbers in part to identify which position they play; if a defender threatening to blitz is wearing a number in the 20s, for example, the offense knows he's a defensive back and not a linebacker.

But now defensive backs and linebackers can choose from the same set of numbers, which Brady believes will cause confusion for quarterbacks and their blockers as they scan the defense.

There's a chance other QBs feel the same way, but Brady certainly won't get any sympathy from his opponents after winning his seventh Super Bowl title with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

College offenses also have to deal with the same problem Brady warns against -- any defensive player can wear single digits in NCAA Division I -- so this is just another challenge for the former New England Patriots quarterback to overcome.

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