There is only one Michael Jordan, NBA fans might say – but they would be wrong.
As anyone monitoring the Green Bay Packers’ daily transactions now knows, there is another Michael Jordan, who joined the team’s practice squad this week.
Like the 60-year-old NBA legend, the 25-year-old Jordan is also listed as a 6-foot-6 guard, but that is where the similarities end. At 315 pounds, the former Ohio State lineman weighs about 50 percent more than the elder Jordan did at his age.
Of course, the name is hardly rare. ‘Jordan’ is the 116th most popular surname in the United States, according to NameCensus.com, which ranks ‘Michael’ fourth among for males. Unsurprisingly, A LexisNexis search of the name ‘Michael Jordan’ yielded more than 3,000 results in the US alone.
There are other famous Michael Jordans, too, including actor Michael B. Jordan. And in the early 2000s, ESPN ran a popular advertisement centered on a fictional middle-aged man with the name and the daily struggles he faced.
‘Are you kidding?’ a disappointed limousine driver holding a ‘Michael Jordan’ sign tells the man in the popular ad.
Thanks to his name, the NFL’s Jordan managed to finagle free pizza from Papa John’s during his college days at Ohio State.
‘I placed it online in the name of ”Michael Jordan,”’ the former Buckeye told ESPN in 2021.
‘All of a sudden, it says it will be here in 20 minutes,’ he continued. ‘So I called the place and said I placed an order for Michael Jordan. He started cussing me out. He said, ”It’s Super Bowl Sunday. You can’t be playing around with fake names like that.”
‘Then I went in and showed him my ID, and I got free pizza for a week.’
The younger Michael Jordan arrived on the periphery of the Packers this week and could find his way onto the 53-man roster if Green Bay continues to suffer injuries along its offensive line. Long-time Packers left tackle David Bakhtiari has been battling knee issues since 2018 and missed the team’s Week 1 win over the rival Chicago Bears.
Ultimately he was drafted in the fourth round of the 2019 NFL Draft by the Cincinnati Bengals.
In 2021, he was waived and then later claimed by the Carolina Panthers, giving the city of Charlotte two Michael Jordans as the Basketball Hall of Famer owned the NBA’s Hornets at the time.
The NFL’s Jordan was cut by the Panthers in August and has since been looking for work.
As for the origin of his famous moniker, the Michigan native told ESPN he was actually named after his father, which is for the best, considering he’s awful at hoops.
‘I’m actually pretty terrible at basketball,’ he said in 2021. ‘You can ask the guys in the locker room. They already know that. I’ve been terrible since I’ve been a kid. I’ve got to look at the ball when I dribble.’