Aaron Hernandez, accused in the murder of Odin Floyd, had many fans. Thousands upon thousands owned his jersey. As the rest of the world watched Hernandez being led out of his home in handcuffs, accused of the execution-style murder of Odin Floyd, those jerseys became obsolete -- along with fans refusing to wear them (due to a decent moral center, like any of us), the Patriots released him.
Soon after, New England announced a two-day exchange program for fans that wanted to bring their Hernandez jerseys and exchange them for another.
And they did.
According to the USA Today, nearly 1,200 jerseys have been exchanged by Saturday evening with 300 of those described as "youth jerseys". A tent had been erected outside the team's Pro Shop where fans received a ticket for their discarded Hernandez jersey. Most people waited around an hour to snake through the line, encountering water stations strategically placed throughout the line. People used those tickets inside the Pro Shop to exchange for another jersey. One fan, Steven McGrath, swapped his Hernandez jersey for a Rob Gronkowski shirt.
"You can't wear a Hernandez (jersey) around here. He disrespected the Patriots way, Robert Kraft, Myra Kraft. You can't disrespect her," he said. "I made a mistake getting a Hernandez (jersey) in the first place. I should have bought Gronkowski, and I wouldn't be here now."
Fans began arriving at 7:30 a.m. Saturday morning to exchange their jerseys. By the time that the shop had opened two hours later, over 100 people were already in line. According to various reports, most fans departed the ProShop with a jersey that belonged to Tom Brady, Gronkowski, and Vince Wilfork. Chandler Jones and Stevan Ridley were popular as well.
The exchange program will continue throughout the day on Sunday.