The Bills opened camp this week with a nod to their past. Sort of.
Running back Senorise Perry donned a No. 32 jersey for Buffalo, the first time the number has been worn since O.J. Simpson did so in 1977. Though the Bills hadn’t retired the number, given Simpson’s past, it had been unofficially out of circulation, as former owner Ralph Wilson reportedly forbade it from being reissued.
“Whatever they do is fine with me,” Simpson told The Athletic. “That’s how I feel. When I played there, I tried to honor the team. Since I left, I always tried to honor the Bills.
“And to be honest, it’s not something I think about. There’s too much else going on in life.”
Simpson was famously acquitted in a double murder trial in 1995 before being found liable for the murders in a civil case two years later. He also has seen jail time as the result of an armed robbery in which Simpson tried to steal back his own memorabilia.
“Whatever they decide to do will not change the way I feel about the people of Buffalo and my time spent there,” Simpson said.
Perry, an undrafted special teams player who finds himself in the middle of this, wears No. 32 to honor his family.
“Of course he still wants his number retired,” Perry said, per The Athletic. “Anybody would want that, no matter what level you played. You can’t take away anything he’s earned on the field.”
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