Rookie dinners are an annual hazing ritual for teams across the NFL, and San Francisco 49ers rookie defensive lineman Drake Jackson made some waves on social media when he posted a bill well in excess of $300,000 on his Instagram.
As it turned out, the 49ers veterans did not make the rookies spend most of their salary on one dinner. Veteran defensive lineman Arik Armstead said the players got the waitress in on the prank and told her to hand the rookies a fake bill. Armstead cleared the air in a tweet and even noted that the veterans contributed to paying the actual bill.
"Y'all silly if you thought a dinner can cost 300k," Armstead tweeted. "It was a prank. The waitress went overboard. The dinner was 7500 me and 2 other vets gave 1k towards it. The rooks split 4500. We had a great time too. I had good vets as a young player I would never do a rookie like that."
Jackson, a second-round pick in the 2022 NFL Draft, was the 49ers' highest selection last spring. In the first year of his rookie contract, Jackson is being paid a base salary of $705,000, so he had to be relieved when the $322,000 bill turned out to be a prank.
As a rookie, Jackson has played in all 14 games while totaling 14 tackles and three sacks. If Jackson can keep producing when he gets opportunities on the field, maybe one day he can afford to take his teammates out for that kind of dinner.