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Patriots announce new jersey numbers for 14 of their veteran players

More than a dozen of the team’s veteran players, including JuJu Smith-Schuster and Mike Gesicki, have received their jersey numbers.

Miami Dolphins Training Camp Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

The New England Patriots entered the third and final phase of their offseason workout program earlier this week, taking another step in their preparation for the 2023 season. As part of that process, we will also get our first up-close look at the new jersey numbers handed out to veteran members of the team.

All of the team’s offseason additions plus a handful of returning vets are wearing new digits now. And one day before the first OTA practice open to the media, the team officially announced what they are:

The full list of new veteran numbers looks as follows:

3 — RB James Robinson: No. 3 is now Robinson’s fourth jersey number in four NFL seasons. He wore 30 and 25 in Jacksonville before taking 23 with the New York Jets last year.

5 — S Jabrill Peppers: Peppers took No. 3 upon his arrival in New England last offseason, but has now changed it to No. 5. The fact that he wore it in college at Michigan might have something to do with that.

7 — WR JuJu Smith-Schuster: Smith-Schuster started his NFL career with the Pittsburgh Steelers wearing No. 19. He moved to No. 9 — his college number at USC — last season when he joined the Kansas City Chiefs. With that number currently worn by linebacker Matthew Judon, he has now added another one to his personal collection.

15 — P Corliss Waitman: Waitman will stay in the teens with his jersey number. He started his career as No. 10 in Pittsburgh and No. 17 in Denver, and now will be No. 15 in New England.

17 — TE Scotty Washington: Washington originally donned No. 88 last season, but with Mike Gesicki arriving in free agency has now moved to 17. He wore 7 during his college career at Wake Forest.

19 — QB Trace McSorley: The jersey will look different but the number will be the same for McSorley: he will wear the same No. 19 he donned during his stint in Arizona the last two years.

29 — DB Brad Hawkins: Hawkins already wore No. 29 when he first joined the Patriots’ practice squad last season. He will wear the same number in 2023.

37 — CB Tae Hayes: Hayes was given 39 when he arrived in New England late last season. He will wear 37 moving forward — his sixth different number in five NFL seasons.

39 — CB Rodney Randle Jr.: The Patriots’ offseason addition via the CFL will don No. 39, thus effectively taking over for Tae Hayes.

45 — LB Chris Board: Chris Board was No. 49 in both Baltimore and Detroit, but that jersey currently belongs to long snapper Joe Cardona. With his college number (1) also unavailable, he opted to go for the 45 last worn by Cameron McGrone.

47 — LB Olakunle Fatukasi: After starting his career in the 50s, Fatukasi has now taken up No. 47. The offseason pickup has no apparent connection to the number.

74 — OT Riley Reiff: For his previous 11 seasons in the NFL, Reiff wore No. 71. With that number belonging to starting guard Michael Onwenu in New England, he opted to go for the somewhat similarly-looking 74.

76 — OT Calvin Anderson: Anderson wore 76 during his time in Denver, and he will keep the number in New England as well.

88 — TE Mike Gesicki: Gesicki started his career with the Miami Dolphins as No. 86, but switched to 88 as a sophomore in 2019. He will wear the same number now in New England.

The Patriots’ rookie class, meanwhile, has yet to receive its official jersey numbers. For the time being its members are again donning jerseys in the 50s and 60s based on draft status. The team did the same the last few years, with the highest draft choice — cornerback Christian Gonzalez — being assigned number 50, and so on.

If New England sticks to the past timeline, the youngsters will only receive regular jersey numbers before the preseason opener. The team will kick off its exhibition slate on Aug. 10 against the visiting Houston Texans.