Jerry Rice

Brenden Rice reveals dad Jerry was ‘hot' about his NFL draft slide

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Brenden Rice, the son of Hall of Fame wide receiver Jerry Rice, was overlooked by every NFL team before the Los Angeles Chargers selected him in the seventh round of the 2024 draft.

While many pegged Brenden as a day-two selection, the 22-year-old had to wait until nearly the end of day three to hear his name called.

In speaking to reporters at Chargers rookie minicamp, Brenden revealed how Jerry was irate with his draft slide, channeling his anger into inspiration with a powerful message to his son.

"My dad was hot," Brenden told reporters. "You guys get the flash like ... the humble dude, right? Me, he's like, 'Hell no, we're going to take this to a different level. These guys going to feel us.'" (h/t ESPN)

There was speculation the 49ers might be interested in Brenden before the draft, inviting the 22-year-old receiver to the facility on an official top-30 visit, on top of the clear connection due to Jerry being a franchise icon.

However San Francisco opted to go in a different direction, selecting wide receivers Ricky Pearsall and Jacob Cowing while Rice continued to slide into the seventh round.

Brenden spent the final two seasons of his college career at USC, recording 84 receptions, 1402 yards and 16 touchdowns during a pair of campaigns with No. 1 overall pick Caleb Williams as his quarterback. The rookie wide receiver then detailed how fortunate he is to go from Williams to Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert.

"I'm in the best position possible to go ahead and make my mark on and make my own legacy," Brenden told reporters. "I went from Caleb Williams to Justin Herbert, and I'm in a room that's going to allow me to compete day in and day out.

"Everything's upon me, so if you guys don't see me coming fall, that's on me. And if you guys see me out there, then I put in the necessary work to put my best foot in the door and go out there and produce."

Brenden also has the benefit of leaning on the advice of his Hall of Fame father, who holds nearly every notable NFL receiving record after a dominant 21-year career.

Based on Jerry's comments, it appears the Rices are taking Brenden's draft slide personally, which might serve as additional motivation as he attempts to break into the NFL with the Chargers.

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