Commanders to retire Sonny Jurgensen’s No. 9 jersey

The Washington Commanders announced Tuesday morning that the team is retiring legendary quarterback Sonny Jurgensen’s No. 9 jersey this season.

The number will officially be retired during Rivalry Weekend in January, when the team plays the Dallas Cowboys.



Jurgensen’s is only the fourth number in franchise history to be retired.

Jurgensen played 18 seasons in the NFL, the last 11 of them as a beloved Washington quarterback from 1964 to 1974. By the end of his career, he’d appeared in 218 career games with 147 starts, according to a news release from the team.

He also worked as an analyst for the team’s radio broadcast from 1981 to 2019, voicing three Super Bowl title runs.

“It’s been a great 55 years in Washington,” he wrote in 2019 when retiring from broadcasting.

His was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1983, as well as being a a five-time Pro Bowler. He’s a member of Washington’s Ring of Fame and inaugural 70 Greatest list, according to a news release from the team.

“No member of the Washington franchise will ever wear the number 9 again, which is truly a nod to Sonny’s incredible accomplishments on and off the field,” co-CEO and co-owner Tanya Snyder said in a news release.

“Dan and I are thankful for the 55 years Sonny dedicated to the franchise. People will remember him as one of the greatest quarterbacks in franchise history and the radio voice of the team for our three Super Bowl victories.”

Jurgensen said the recognition is an honor. His statement in full is below:

I am very humbled by this recognition, it is an honor of a lifetime to have my jersey retired with a franchise I spent 55 years of my life with. Thank you to Dan and Tanya for this honor and for supporting me and my family during our time in Washington. From hanging up my cleats to hanging up my clipboard and headset a few decades later, my time spent in Washington meant the world to me. Additionally, I want to thank my coaches and teammates including Coach Lombardi, Leonard Hauss, Billy Kilmer, Bobby Mitchell, Jerry Smith and Charley Taylor, and my special radio and TV partners Sam Huff, Frank Herzog and others. Thank you to the fan base for cheering on the Burgundy & Gold every single Sunday, without you we wouldn’t have the ability to play or talk about this special game for a living. Lastly, a special thank you to my wife Margo for always being by my side and for the unconditional support.

He’ll be recognized at a ceremony before the game against Dallas Jan. 7 or Jan. 8.

The announcement came on Jurgensen’s 88th birthday.

Jessica Kronzer

Jessica Kronzer graduated from James Madison University in May 2021 after studying media and politics. She enjoys covering politics, advocacy and compelling human-interest stories.

This article was written by WTOP’s news partner, NBC Sports Washington. Sign up for NBC Sports Washington’s free email subscription today.

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