Over the offseason the Patriots splurged in free agency via trades, RFA’s and, undrafted free agents, bringing in a lot of bodies ready to work.
The Patriots draft and their free agency frenzy combined to bring in twelve new players, and what does this mean? New names, new numbers.
Most notably, Stephon Gilmore takes over the No. 24 jersey which has a history in New England. 24 was worn by former cornerback Ty Law, and free agent cornerback Darrelle Revis. Second year cornerback Cryus Jones had hoped to carry on the tradition of the great number 24, but after a poor rookie season, will be moved to number 41.
Cooks had worn number 10 in New Orleans, but with quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo rocking that number, Cooks has to resort to wearing number 14.
“No big significance at all, really,” Cooks said Tuesday at Gillette Stadium. “I was seven in college, so the way that I like to think about it is double seven. But yeah, no big significance.”
Cooks was taken in the second round of the 2014 draft, so it’s appropriate for him to be wearing 14. Although, it is an odd number for a WR, wideouts Sammy Watkins and Jarvis Landry are two of the best receivers in the league that rep the number.
During his time at Oregon State, Cooks wore number 7. Cooks changed to that number to honor his brother who had passed away of kidney cancer in July of 2007. For Cooks, the number changes overtime have all meant something to him, honoring his brother in college, his new beginning in the NFL, and now his fresh start with the Patriots after being frustrated with the Saints offense.
He should wear number 81 as he is thought to be the embodiment of Randy Moss, just a few inches shorter.
For many, the path to the NFL is a tough one, and a players’ number means everything to them. For their family, for the team, for the last name on the back, everyone has a reason.
New numbers for Free agents/ Trades and Draft-picks
Brandin Cooks, 14 Devin Street, 17 Stephon Gilmore, 24 Rex Burkhead, 34 Mike Gillislee, 35
Tony Garcia, 63 Connor McDermott, 67 Dwayne Allen, 83 Rob Housler, 86
James O’Shaughnessy, 88 Deatrich Wise Jr., 91 Lawrence Guy, 93 Kony Ealy, 94 Derek Rivers, 95
Undrafted free agents:
Jason Thompson, 26 Dwayne Thomas, 27 D.J. Killings, 29
David Jones, 34 LeShun Daniels Jr., 39 Kenny Moore, 42 Damarius Travis, 45
Jacob Hollister, 48 Harvey Langi, 48 Ellis Brooks, 51 Adam Butler, 70
Cole Croston, 70 Josh Augusta, 72 Max Rich, 72 Jason King, 74
Andrew Jelks, 76 Cody Hollister, 81 Austin Carr, 84