Buffalo Bills legend O.J. Simpson has endeared himself to a generation of football fans with five simple words.
“Hey, Twitter world, yours truly!”
Simpson sometimes adds “this is” before “yours truly,” but the Pro Football Hall of Fame running back has greeted Twitter users with that phrase for over a year.
Simpson, who is arguably known more for his legal issues than his time with the Buffalo Bills, controversially joined Twitter in the summer of 2019.
When Simpson, now 73, posted his first Twitter video, he explained just what made him join the app.
O.J. Simpson is a football legend
Legal issues and the NFL’s attempt at hiding history have made it easy to forget just how dominant Orenthal James “O.J.” Simpson was in his prime.
The No. 1 overall pick out of Southern California in 1969, Simpson lived up to expectations and became one of the greatest running backs in NFL history. Simpson ran for 11,236 yards and 61 touchdowns in 11 NFL seasons, nine with the Bills.
In 1973, Simpson became the first running back in league history to run for 2,000 yards in a season. Simpson finished with a then-record 2,003 yards on six yards per carry in 14 games.
Only six other running backs have done it, and three — Barry Sanders, Terrell Davis, and Eric Dickerson — joined Simpson in the Hall of Fame. No running back has topped the 2,105 yards that Dickerson totaled in 1984.
Adrian Peterson, who ran for 2,097 yards in 2012, is not yet eligible for the Hall of Fame but is considered a lock to earn a bronze bust.
A six-time Pro Bowler, Simpson had five seasons with over 1,000 rushing yards.
Simpson controversially joined Twitter in 2019
O.J. Simpson has dealt with various legal issues since he retired following the 1979 season.
Simpson went on trial in 1994 for the murders of Simpson’s ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her friend, Ron Goldman. A jury acquitted Simpson in 1995, although the victims’ families received $33.5 million for the duo’s wrongful deaths in 1997.
Simpson served nearly 10 years of a 33-year sentence for armed robbery and kidnapping.
All of this is relevant because Simpson, who mostly remained out of the public light upon his release from prison in October 2017, joined Twitter in June 2019.
His arrival onto the social media network was controversial, as media members and regular users wondered why Twitter let Simpson make an account.
“I wonder if he was still just a football great, actor and pitchman if he’d have as many followers as he does now that he’s also a double murderer,” MLB Network reporter Jon Heyman tweeted.
Another user wrote, “This year is getting worse and worse.” Tony Posnanski, an author, was among those who tweeted profane replies at Simpson.
Others opted for memes and jokes.
“This account’s gonna be killer,” wrote comedian Tim Young.
Twitter still has not verified Simpson’s account, one which earned 1 million followers as of Oct. 21, 2020.
O.J. Simpson cited ‘getting even’ as why he joined Twitter
Besides wanting to talk about fantasy football with the Twitter world, what made O.J. Simpson want to join social media?
In a 22-second video he posted on June 14, 2019, Simpson greeted users with the now-familiar, “Hey Twitter world, this is yours truly.”
Simpson then explained what made him join Twitter.
“Coming soon to Twitter, you’ll get to read all my thoughts and opinions on just about everything. Now there’s a lot of fake O.J. accounts out there, so this one — @TheRealOJ32 — is the only official one. So, it should be a lot of fun. I got a little getting even to do. So, God Bless; take care.”
Simpson never clarified who he intended to “get even” with, nor did he elaborate on those comments. Most of Simpson’s tweets have involved fantasy football, his Buffalo Bills, NFL trends, and occasional political commentary.
Simpson referenced the fake accounts, so he possibly Twitter to have his legitimate voice on the site and delegitimize accounts posing as him. But the meaning of “getting even” is one that may never be answered.