Jerry Rice apparently admitted to an NFL scandal of his own long before mocking the New England Patriots for “Deflategate.”
ESPN published an online video on January 17 — one day before the news of DeflateGate broke — which featured a shocking confession expressed by the Hall of Fame wide receiver.
The primary topic of discussion covered in the video was the evolution of gloves. During his segment, Jerry Rice admitted that he used the adhesive Stickum on his own gloves during his record-setting career.
“I know this might be a little illegal, guys, but you put a little spray, a little Stickum on them, to make sure that texture is a little sticky.”
Pro Football Talk reports that using Stickum on his gloves was actually very illegal, which is explained further in the ESPN video.
The NFL reportedly decided to introduce gloves into the standard wardrobe to outlaw the type of products used by such players as Lester Hayes and Fred Biletnikoff to spread on their hands and other places when preparing for a game.
Jerry Rice admits that he enhanced the surface of the standard gloves that were approved by the NFL with Stickum, a substance that would make it easier for him to catch the ball.
Throughout the two decades that Jerry Rice played in the NFL, he set and broke numerous records as a star wide receiver. With more than 1,500 receptions and over 200 touchdowns recorded in his career stats, Rice’s catching ability played a significant role in his overall success.
With or without any adhesive on his gloves, chances are that Rice would have still had a very successful career on the professional football field. However, the fact that Rice criticized the Patriots for allegedly having an “edge” through DeflateGate raises eyebrows since it appears that Jerry Rice had a bit of an “edge” himself, as well.
When discussing the Patriots’ controversial scandal with Jim Rome, Jerry Rice even went as far as claiming that an asterisk needed to be placed on their Lombardi Trophy.
“I’m going to be point blank, I feel like it’s cheating. Because you have an edge up on your opponent and its unfortunate that it happened. I’m not saying the outcome of the game would have been different or anything like that because they got beat 45-7, but they still had an edge.”
Rice even went as far as talking about his own experience when it came to playing in cold weather.
“I’ve played in cold weather, I know how hard the football is and you can grip the leather [if deflated] just a little bit better.”
However, Jerry Rice did not mention whether or not he was playing with Stickum on his gloves during those cold weather games.