Dalvin Cook, others may not switch jersey numbers for this reason
NFL owners approved a new rule recently that will allow many players to don the jersey numbers they wore in college, but Dalvin Cook is not planning to take advantage of it. The same may be true for other players who are wary of the price tag associated with making a switch.
The new jersey number rule expands the number of players who are eligible to wear single-digit numbers. Cook, like many other skill position players, wore a single-digit number in college. According to Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk, Cook will not switch from No. 33 back to the No. 4 he wore at Florida State because it would cost a significant amount of money.
In order for a player to switch jersey numbers, he must buy all remaining inventory of unsold jerseys with his current number on it. Florio says that would cost Cook somewhere in the range of $1.5 million. The cost is typically higher for popular players, as jersey manufacturer Fanatics would likely have a larger supply of their jerseys in stock at any given time.
Of course, there is a tradeoff. Players would have to buy up all unused inventory of their current number, but they would then likely see a spike in sales for merchandise featuring their new jersey number. That is something Cook and others who are contemplating a change will have to weigh.