Now that former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez has been charged with murder and is being investigated in some more murders, it looks like a foregone conclusion he’ll never play another snap in the NFL.
So, what are Patriots fans with No. 81 Hernandez jerseys supposed to do? If they act fast, they can swap their now-tainted Hernandez jerseys for ones featuring the name and number of a player who definitely didn’t shoot a man multiple times and leave him to die (as authorities allege Hernandez did).
Next weekend — that’s July 6 and 7 — fans with jerseys purchased from the Patriots Pro Shop or PatriotsProShop.com, the official retailer of Patriots merchandise, can swap their Hernandez jerseys for another jersey of equal or lesser value.
“We know that children love wearing their Patriots jerseys, but may not understand why parents don’t want them wearing their Hernandez jerseys anymore,” said New England Patriots spokesperson Stacey James. “We hope this opportunity to exchange those jerseys at the Patriots ProShop for another player’s jersey will be well received by parents.”
The only catch? You have to make the trade in person, so Patriots fans outside of the Foxboro area are pretty much out of luck.
Still, it’s a very classy move by a classy organization. Despite the heinous crimes Hernandez has been accused of, the Patriots have handled this whole thing in exactly the right way.