After much speculation the Buffalo Bills confirmed on Thursday that their newest wide receiver will wear the same number he always has for his 13 NFL seasons. Terrell Owens, thanks to second-year wideout James Hardy, will don number 81 for the Bills in 2009.
Hardy wore jersey number 81 as a rookie for Buffalo in 2008, but had worn number 82 in college at Indiana University. The Bills announced that Hardy will wear jersey number 84 in 2009.
The team also announced in conjunction with Delaware North Companies Sportservice that they will begin selling replica No. 81 Terrell Owens jerseys this Sunday exclusively at The Bills Stores at Ralph Wilson Stadium and at Eastview Mall in suburban Rochester and online at www.BuffaloBills.com.
The Bills Store at Ralph Wilson Stadium will be open special Sunday hours from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. to accommodate fans.
"Fans interested in being the first to have Owens' Buffalo Bills jersey with his official number need to visit The Bills Stores at the stadium or at Eastview Mall or shop online at the team's official Web site this Sunday," said Beth Backus, Sportservice's general manager at Ralph Wilson Stadium. "These locations will be the first to offer the jersey and will have them exclusively starting Sunday."
Sportservice and the Buffalo Bills plan to introduce a Terrell Owens T-shirt, bobble head doll and other novelty items as training camp approaches this summer. Other assorted retail items are also being considered.
The jersey numbers for three of their other recent acquisitions were also made public Thursday.
Quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick will wear number 14.
Cornerback Drayton Florence will wear number 21.
Center Geoff Hangartner will wear number 63.