After the Cowboys made receiver CeeDee Lamb the 17th overall selection, they offered him a choice in jersey numbers. No. 10 or No. 88.
The Cowboys have had 13 players wear No. 10, none of them particularly noteworthy with Reggie Collier and Tavon Austin the most well known. They have had 11 players wear No. 88, including Drew Pearson, Michael Irvin and Dez Bryant.
So naturally. . .
“I picked 10,” Lamb said on 105.3 The Fan on Thursday.
Lamb talked to Irvin, who is in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, before the team began selling his jerseys.
“We talked about the tradition and the respect I had for him and that number,” Lamb said. “Not about any pressure, but how much of an edge he’s giving me by wearing that number. No matter where I look, when I see myself, I’m going to see 88. It’s going to always remind me of who wore it before me.”
Lamb changed his mind and chose 88, and Bryant also gave his blessing to the rookie.
“Kind of going more in-depth with the situation, just kind of understanding the tradition and how much that number means to this organization, and then how much of a foundation that number holds itself – the great legends before me and what they’ve done with that number, it’s kind of like, why not keep the tradition going, you know?” Lamb said. “Obviously, they didn’t retire the number for a reason. So, just trying to keep the legacy of 88 going in Dallas.”
The Cowboys have never officially retired any number, but no one has worn 12 since Roger Staubach, 8 since Troy Aikman or 22 since Emmitt Smith, among others.
Lamb wore No. 2 in college, which does not have a standard numbering system like the NFL. Receivers are allowed to wear numbers between 10-19 and 80-89 in the NFL.