Star player takes a stand over NFL’s crackdown on heavy tackles this season.
It might be only one letter different but it says a lot more about how NFL players are feeling about the league’s offcials right now.
After a spate of fines for excessive rough play being handed out this season, San Francisco safety Donte Whitner has officially filed to change his surname to Hitner.
While he might be just dropping the “W” from his name, the San Francisco player, who revealed he had been fined $21,000 by the NFL for a tackle against St Louis, said he thought it was important to make a point.
“I actually put the paperwork in yesterday afternoon. Just waiting to get the paperwork out,” he said.
“So from here on out until I retire, my name will be Donte Hitner, without the W.
“That’s what I do. It’s my last name and removing a letter makes it pretty cool,” he said, adding that some fans already call him “Hitner” anyway.”
The move is set to be an expensive one for the newly-named Hitner as NFL rules state any player who changes his name during the season needs to buy all of the outstanding merchandise with his former name on it.