Every once in a while, a star athlete becomes so closely associated with one particular city that their status as a local legend is recognized on a national level. These athletes become poster boys for their respective cities and are essentially as powerful and influential as politicians.
When a player ascends to this rare level, the thought of them playing in a different environment becomes perplexing. Picture a scruffier Derek Jeter in a Red Sox uniform, Tom Brady manning the helm for the Jets or, perhaps most awkwardly, Kobe Bryant tearing it up in Celtics green – oh wait, it looks like someone already did:
Although it may be unusual, it isn’t unheard of for players who have achieved this status to be shipped off to another city, especially as their careers begin to wind down. We’ll go ahead and assume that Kobe Bryant and Tom Brady are safe, but sometimes, this tough decision must be made as soon as a player’s name recognition begins to outweigh their actual performance.
In recent years, it has become commonplace for franchises in this predicament to extend one-day contracts to their former star players so that they may retire with the team that defined their careers. This warmhearted gesture enables professional careers to come full circle and it symbolically etches them in franchise history forever. Today, it was announced that Osi Umenyiora, 2x Super Bowl champion, will be the next player to retire on a one-day contract when he re-signs with the New York Giants this summer.
History of The One-Day Contract