There’s a popular belief—backed up by countless songs and YouTube videos—that all athletes want to be rappers and all rappers want to be athletes. It’s true: The worlds of sport and hip-hop often collide. And during the late ’90s and early ’00s, throwback football jerseys were the norm in urban fashion. You couldn’t turn on MTV or BET without seeing the biggest rap acts in the world smothering your television screen with classic Mitchell & Ness throwbacks or unis from the NFL’s most popular players of the era. With that in mind, TDdaily will break down one such video per week as part of our #ThrowbackJerseyThursday series.
“Simply magnificent the way the man spends the money!” Indeed, Jermaine Dupri’s 2001 video for “Ballin Outta Control” is an unabashed and unfiltered display of, well, “opulence.” Boasting about a $100 million plane and popping tags on new cars with a duffel bag full of cash (we’ll get to this in a moment) aren’t things the normal human can do. But for rappers in the early 2000s, if you didn’t do so, you weren’t going to get noticed, or get your videos played on cable. And all the while, Dupri does so while rocking a Randy Moss Vikings jersey…backwards…and half up his shoulder…while harlem shaking.
Randy Moss — No. 84 — Minnesota Vikings
Four years after this video came out, Randy Moss would finally fulfill his destiny, as spelled out by Mr. Dupri. Moss was fined $10,000 in January ’05 for “fake mooning” the crowd at Lambeau Field after scoring a touchdown against the rival Green Bay Packers. And yet, Moss flippantly—and famously—brushed off the fine. When the media caught up to him in the parking lot, this happened:
Reporter: “Write the check yet, Randy?”
Moss: “When you’re rich you don’t write checks.”
Reporter: “If you don’t write checks, how do you pay these guys?”
Moss: “Straight cash, homey.”
Reporter: “Randy, are you upset about the fine?”
Moss: “No, cause it ain’t [expletive]. Ain’t nothing but 10 grand. What’s 10 grand to me? Ain’t [expletive] … Next time I might shake my [expletive].”
And thus, “Straight Cash Homey” made its way into the American lexicon. No doubt, JD would have been a proud papa, considering his apparent disdain for a paper trail, preferring instead to drop stack bundles at the car dealership and drive away. He, like Randy, would rather pay in cash. Ain’t nothing. Randy’s may have been the most culturally significant jersey to appear in the “Ballin Outta Control” video, but it wasn’t the only one. Three more NFLers made their way into the mini-movie…
Charles Woodson — No. 24 — Oakland Raiders
Lil’ Bow Wow, when he was still lil’. Then again, this jersey is so oversized I wouldn’t be surprised if that thing still didn’t fit him today. It also appears to be autographed in some way (peep the 4). I’m sorry, but this is a no-go. If your jersey is autographed, you don’t wear it in the streets—or music videos. You frame that shit and hang it in your man cave. Or lil’ man cave. Or whatever.
Dan Marino — No. 13 — Miami Dolphins
If you squint hard enough, you can convince yourself that the man wearing the Dolphins jersey in JD’s video is in fact actually Dan Marino himself. Okay, so it’s not him. But I bet this ranks right up there with his Super Bowl XIX appearance, his 1984 MVP Award and his cameo in Ace Ventura: Pet Detective.
Jevon Kearse — No. 90 — Tennessee Titans
In his first three seasons in the NFL (1999-01) Kearse played up to his “The Freak” nickname—dude played all 16 games in all three of those seasons and racked up 36 sacks in the process. Arguably the most ferocious defender in the NFL at that time, Kearse’s jersey was a popular one. Plus, the Titans’ teal, white and navy color combo is conveniently fly.
R.I.P. Nate Dogg. Until next week, Peace.
Abe Schwadron is the Online Editor of TDdaily.com. Follow him on Twitter @abe_squad.