Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Packers to Retire White’s Jersey

At half time of their game against the Cleveland Browns on September 18 the Green Bay Packers are going to retire the #92 Jersey of the late Reggie White.

The Packers had already planned to do this before White’s death on December 26. Team president Bob Harlan met with White last September to inform him that the team was going to retire his number during the 2005 season.

"He was very honored," Harlan said. "I told him to look up there (the facade of Lambeau Field) and picture his name with the other numbers. He knew how special this was."

Only four players in the franchise's 86-year history have had their number retired - fullback Tony Canadeo (3), receiver Don Hutson (14), quarterback Bart Starr (15) and linebacker Ray Nitschke (66).

Reggie White was a two-time defensive player of the year and will be a first ballot Hall of Famer in 2006. White was also elected to 13 consecutive pro-bowls.

Many people have various opinions as to who White was off the field, but few question who he was on the field. As a member of the Philadelphia Eagles, Green Bay Packers and Carolina Panthers White earned the respect of teammates and colleagues as one of the most dominant defensive players to ever play the game of football.

As an ordained minister White often was criticized because of comments he regarding his convictions on homosexuality, and cultural and racial barriers.