Todd Gurley will wear the number 21 on his jersey as a member of the Atlanta Falcons this season. The team announced Gurley wearing #21 on Friday in one of the weirdest ways possible - using Leslie and Ben's engagement from Parks and Recreation.
While that's weird enough, the running back chose the number despite the fact that Deion Sanders did not give him his blessing. In fact, it sounds like Sanders did the opposite. In a radio interview, Gurley said that Sanders had told him not to and explained that he understood why he felt that way.
""Prime was hatin' on me. He told me don't wear it," Gurley said. "If I was Prime, I wouldn't want nobody be wearing my number either.""
And yet, good for Gurley wearing the number if that's what he wants to wear. It's available. Desmond Trufant, who signed a 2-year deal with the Detroit Lions this offseason, wore #21 in Atlanta for the last seven seasons. If Sanders doesn't want anyone else wearing the number, maybe he should ask the Falcons to retire it, which they have not. As a Hall of Famer primarily associated with the franchise, they would certainly be justified in doing so, but they haven't.
So Gurley - or anyone else - has the right to wear the number. If anything, Gurley should ask Trufant who wore the number longer and more recently than Sanders, if he was cool with Gurley wearing the number.