Falcons receiver Russell Gage wanted Steve Bartkowski’s old number, couldn’t get it

Some numbers that are retired aren’t really retired. Some numbers that aren’t retired actually are.

Via D. Orlando Ledbetter of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Falcons receiver Russell Gage wanted to change his number. The Falcons declined to give Gage his first choice, even though the Falcons don’t officially retire jersey numbers.

“I wanted something different, something fresh,” Gage said Thursday, per Ledbetter. “I actually tried to get 10, but it’s retired I understand. I just wanted something fresh, something new.”

Quarterback Steve Bartkowski, a member of the team’s Ring of Honor, wore number 10.

Some of the other players in the Ring of Honor have had their numbers re-issued. Cordarrelle Patterson wears Roddy White’s No. 84. Jaeden Graham wears Claude Humphrey’s No. 87. Duron Harrison wears Deion Sanders’ No. 21. Jeff Holland wears Gerald Riggs’ No. 42. Mike Davis wears Warrick Dunn’s No. 28.

Gage opted for No. 14 instead.