Rookie LB Divine Deablo latest Raiders player to nab single-digit number

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This offseason, the NFL opened up their number selection rules to allow most positions to wear single digit numbers. It used to be just quarterbacks, kickers, and punters who were allowed. Now it’s anyone other than linemen who can don a single digit.

The first Raiders player to change to a single-digit number was Zay Jones who switched from No. 12 to No. 7. Now the Raider have another. Third-round rookie linebacker Divine Deablo has switched from No. 49 to No. 5.

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What’s interesting is the number five was always available to Deablo or anyone. No one was wearing it in camp, so it wasn’t a matter of waiting until a player was cut to pounce on it. It must’ve been that he just wasn’t given permission until now.

Often times the reason for the switch has to do with what the player wore in college. That was the case with Zay Jones who wore number seven at East Carolina. Deablo, on the other hand, wore No. 17 as a safety at Virginia Tech. And wore No. 88 as a freshman when he played wide receiver. So, I guess until someone asks him, we won’t know what the significance is to the number five.

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