With every new season, players come and go, move lockers, move houses and even some others change numbers.
The new faces that will be under silver helmets and red face masks for the Patriots this fall have all been given numbers for the start of voluntary offseason workouts.
One of those new faces, defensive end Chris Long, made sure he wasn’t going to be stepping on anyone’s toes by taking a certain number. He reached out to Chandler Jones back in March according to Mike Reiss to ask for his blessing to wear number 95.
He knew he wasn’t going to be able to keep his 91 since Dont’a Hightower currently owns it and Jones was understanding and appreciative of his request to him.
The request wasn’t their first interaction as on March 17th, Chandler Jones tweeted a congratulatory message to Long for signing his deal, basically filling the hole Jones had left behind on his exit to Arizona.
Long replied in a tweet that he later deleted:
Thanks bro it's all respect. I will try to carry the torch my bro. Make sure you get after the rams for me https://t.co/pq93D0z6yA
Chris Long (@JOEL9ONE) March 18, 2016
Long wasn’t the only new Patriot to lock in his new number as Mike Reiss reported the rest of the new numbers’ respective owners earlier this morning:
WR Chris Hogan-15, RB Donald Brown-34, CB E.J. Biggers-39, LB Ramon Humber-53, LB Shea McClellin-58, G Jonathan Cooper-65, DL Frank Kearse-72, TE Martellus Bennett-83, WR Nate Washington-84, TE Clay Harbor-88, DT Markus Kuhn-94, DE Long-95, and finally DT Terrance Knighton-96.
Knighton acknowledged his new number as well tweeting yesterday,
Earlier in March he shared his appreciation of his new team with a post of an edit of him sporting a flying Elvis on his silver helmet, further showing he probably hates being here (lol)
Some other returning players also changed their digits, with CB Darryl Roberts wearing 27, LB James Vaughters sporting 48 and LB Jon Bostic chose 52.