Michael Vick’s new jersey number cost him $10,000 — all of it going to charity.
The New York Jets quarterback negotiated for the number with punter Ryan Quigley, who previously wore No. 1, during workouts and the two came to an agreement. Quigley gave it up on condition that Vick pay $10,000 for it and donate all of the money to charity.
“I think it’s great that Ryan was willing to change as long as it was for a good cause,” Vick said in a statement released by his publicist Monday night. “I loved his idea.”
Vick plans to make a donation in Quigley’s name to Teen Angel of North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina — Quigley is a North Myrtle Beach native — and to the Boys and Girls Club of New York.
“Most of the time in the NFL, if a veteran requests your number, you work out a financial agreement between the two players,” Quigley said in the statement. “I was not interested in the money for myself. I wanted to find a way to help some others.”
Vick announced last week he had chosen to wear No. 1 a few days after changing his mind about his selection of No. 8. Vick has worn No. 7 since high school, but that is currently worn by second-year quarterback Geno Smith.
After signing with the Jets in March, Vick insisted Smith would keep the number and he would find a different one to wear. Vick and Smith will compete for the starting job in training camp.
“I looked at the available numbers and thought I would go with No. 8 for my new start with the Jets,” Vick said. “It just didn’t look right. I didn’t feel right. I started talking with Ryan about No. 1.”
Vick will become the first quarterback to wear No. 1 with the Jets, and just the seventh player overall in team history. He’ll also be one of the few NFL quarterbacks to wear the number, a small group that includes Warren Moon and Jeff George.
Quigley, meanwhile, has yet to choose a new jersey number.
SOURCE: The Associated Press