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Looking Back at the Draft


The NFL draft provided a fair amount of uni-notable moments aside from the Dolphins’ and Vikings’ unveilings. Now that the dust has settled, let’s take a look back:

• On Friday I noted that the jersey held up by Chargers first-rounder D.J. Fluker had yellow NOB lettering and no neck roll (which seemed to confirm what we saw with these retail authentics a week earlier). But when they introduced Fluker and their second- and third-round picks at a press conference over the weekend, they gave them old jerseys with white NOB lettering and neck rolls.

• Speaking of neck rolls, it appears that the latest team to scrap them may be the Broncos. (Obviously, that’s just a Photoshop job by Nike, but it looks like Denver might end up with a ridiculously thick collar, like the Texans — ugh.)

• Continuing on that same theme: If you keep looking through Nike’s current promo images for the various NFL teams, you’ll find that many formerly neck-rolled teams are no long neck-rolled. (The only teams still shown wearing the neck roll are the Rams, Bengals, and Saints.) Let’s hope these changes make it onto the field. Further info here and here.

• At the draft, 49ers first-rounder held up a jersey with the team’s usual fucked-up sleeve stripes. But at the press conference where they introduced him to the media, he had a jersey with genuine sleeve stripes. “Maybe a possible change?” asks reader Christian Cisneros. “Hope so.”

• The Browns were supposedly going to eliminate their Al Lerner sleeve memorial this season. But it was still there at the draft.

• “At the Dolphins’ unveiling, they brought out past legends to wear the uniforms of their eras, and Jason Taylor was wearing the 1997-2012 uniform,” says reader Alvaro Muñiz. “But he was wearing a uni combination that I cannot recall the team ever wearing during that era: aqua jersey with white pants and white socks.” That’s a surprising oversight, especially since they went to the trouble of getting the right socks and belt for Bob Griese.

• Tide detergent and the Eagles put up a photo of first-rounder Lane Johnson wearing an Eagles helmet with a white facemask. “Probably just a bad Photoshop job of a college photo,” says reader Christopher Wade. “But still”¦”

• “Curious discrepancy in the NFL apps and their use of the new Dolphins and Jaguars logo,” says reader Patrick Runge. “On a Verizon device (which has the exclusive NFL Mobile app), they show the old, out-of-date logos, while the non-Verizon NFL 13 app has the new logos. Kind of amazing that the NFL gets it right for all the littles, but not the customers of its ‘preferred corporate partner.'”

• Reader JJ Sledge notes that ESPN had a commercial for the draft that showed the old logos for the Vikings, Dolphins, and Jaguars.

• Here’s an article and slideshow about what the players wore at the draft.

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Uni Watch News Ticker: The Toledo Mud Hens will wear Star Wars jerseys this weekend. “I don’t remember Chewbacca being that blonde, but whatever,” says Terry Corby. … Here’s Oregon’s spring game uni, which — of course — pays tribute to the military. Hey, there are still careers in combat, right? ”¦ In a related item, UAB wore an unusual helmet design for their spring game. “The ‘4-27-11’ is a reference to the anniversary of the tornado outbreak in Alabama,” explains Doug Simpson. …While looking through a 1965 issue of Sports Illustated, I came across an ad for Old Crow whiskey that features a crow figurine wearing a gumball-style football helmet. I like that! … Findlay, a D2 school in Ohio, is adding NOBs to its football helmets. I hope for their sake that they don’t have any players named Worthington (from Bryan Council). ”¦ NSFW if you scroll down a bit: Here’s an interesting article, with accompanying charts and infographics, on NBA fines. ”¦ Pro cyclist Adam Hansen made his own DIY shoes (from Sean Clancy). ”¦ Really like this Boston youth league baseball patch. … Really interesting article about a Punjabi broadcast of “Hockey Night in Canada.” Recommended. … Fun story about a Seattle police officer who uses a 1970 police cruiser and uniform (from Scott Demianiw). … University of San Francisco recently underwent a rebranding. You can see their new style guide here (from Joaquin Jang). … I like this new Traverse City rugby jersey, which shows Traverse City’s regional shoreline (from Christopher Hall). … Yesterday’s New York Times Magazine had a big article on why breast cancer awareness campaigns, like the ones that put so many pink uniforms in front of our eyeballs, haven’t really changed anything. … Some parents in Michigan are upset about a Little League team being sponsored by a local gun shop (from Max Reinhart). ”¦ Neil Scott noticed that UVA’s lacrosse coaches have school-branded shorts. “Never seen that on a sideline before,” he says. ”¦ The North Shore Navigators (Futures League) will wear 1940s Lynn Red Sox throwbacks for selected games this season. ”¦ The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers have a cool bullpen buggy (from Nicole Haase). ”¦ Matthew McDonough was shopping for shoes in Japan and spotted some sneakers with NFL team logos. ”¦ Latest MLB team to start using bat knob decals: the Rangers. Several Marlins players have also gotten on board. ”¦ The Tigers and Braves wore Negro League throwbacks on Saturday. Looks like Atlanta’s unis were real wool flannels, and I think Detroit’s were too. Impressive! ”¦ You can see this year’s Tour de France team uniforms here (from Jeremy Brahm). ”¦ Seriously magnificent striped stirrups for Colorado State baseball (from Steve Foster). ”¦ “The Philadelphia 76ers have acquired the rights to the Utah Flash of the NBA D-League and will move the team to Delaware, where they’ll be called the Delaware 87ers (for the year Delaware ratified the U.S. Constitution),” says James Ashby. “The interesting thing about the logo is that they opted to keep the ring of stars over the first numeral, even though it doesn’t work as well over the 8 and it does over the 7.” ”¦ The A’s brought back some players from their 1973 championship team over the weekend and gave them throwback pullovers to wear. Look closely at that photo and you’ll see that Bill North — second from right — didn’t have the little “tail” on his chest letter. Neither did Sal Bando, third from right in that last shot (good catch by Richard Paloma). … Someone in the Tigers’ dugout last night was wearing an MLB jacket and last year’s National League All-Star BP cap. Odd (screen shot by Gordie Taylor). ”¦ Eephus League founder Bethany Heck has designed a new scorecard, but she needs help producing it, so she’s starting a Kickstarter campaign. You know what to do. ”¦ With the NHL regular season now over, longtime Uni Watch pal and Hockey Blog in Canada blogger Teebz is running his annual playoff pool. “As always, there’s no entry fee,” he says. “You don’t need to know a lot about hockey — just have an idea of who will defeat whom, and which players may score key goals. Entry deadline is when the puck drops in the first playoff game on Tuesday night. Please enter if interested!”

Comments (90)

    After the game, they’ll be awarding medals to everyone except the Toledo players.

    Unless the Charlotte Knights like having their arms pulled from their sockets, I suggest a new strategy:
    Let the Mud Hens win.

    Just so you know, the Mets wore their blue alternate jerseys and their blue alternate caps yesterday (Sunday).

    Pooh on the parents complaining about the little league sponsorship. It’s a local small business! It’s an actual parent in the league! It’s a legal product! What, would they rather the kids were sponsored by McDonald’s? Don’t answer that: They almost certainly would, which right there sums up just about everything wrong with American parenting these days.

    Or maybe I’m just influenced by the fact that my first little league team was sponsored by a liquor store.

    My first LL jersey was sponsored by a local Masonic Lodge. Do you think today’s parents would be ok with their kids wearing that on the front of their jerseys? We need more old school parents and less of these everybody gets a trophy politically correct ones.

    I’m not sure what’s politically “correct” about objecting to an ad for a gun store on your kid’s back.

    Sounds like it’s a political divisive move to me. Doesn’t “being PC” mean you’re trying hard not to offend?

    Given that the first agreement with me consisted of (1) An easily checked falsehood – masonic lodges sponsor youth teams and even whole leagues all the time and you never hear a ruckus; and (2) An invocation of the BS phrase “politically correct;” I am forced to reconsider my own opinion. If the first guy to agree with me says “political correctness,” then my side of the argument is almost certainly wrong. People whose opinions are backed by facts and sound reason never, ever use the phrase “politically correct.”

    So I hereby revise my objection to this: I hope the parents raising a ruckus take a step back and reconsider the very idea of permitting their children’s bodies to be sold as advertising space. Gun shop or McDonald’s, local business or global conglomerate, either way the issue is not the product being sold, but the use of children’s bodies to sell it. Objecting to one or another otherwise legal ad puts the parents in the position of the old aphorism that ends, “We’ve already established that; now we’re just negotiating the price.”

    You can certainly eliminate the ads, but that means eliminating the sponsorship money. This is certainly an option, as the little league teams I played for simply said “Maple Lake Baseball” on the front. Of course, we had to buy all our own equipment and our parents escorted us to out of town games.

    CIA was the sponsor of the first team I played for. that’s all it said on the back of our shirts. None of the parents knew for sure if it was that CIA or not.

    After the season was over, we found out it stood for something like Credit Issuing Associates or some such.

    Either way, I don’t recall anyone having any issues with it.

    If I may make one small suggestion to wunderkind Heck, it doesn’t look like there is space on that scorecard for a count. That is one of the most important features in a scorecard to me, and seemingly hard to find. About the only place I can reliably find it is here:

    I love the Eephus League, but I would be much more inclined to buy a scorebook if it had boxes for the count.

    Oh, but there is space for a count. There just aren’t boxes. I mostly use the original EL scorebook myself, and tiny as it is I regularly put counts in there.

    Well, actually I mark counts if an AB reaches 0-2, 3-0, or 3-2, or sometimes pitch counts for an especially long AB, which is to say whenever Jayson Werth bats, but still. Plenty of room for marginalia like that. The only problem is if you score RBIs like I do, filling in the outside corners of the box, and the batter hits a grand slam after I’ve marked the count in the bottom-left corner.

    Hey Aaron, I understand your desire for a dedicated area for pitching counts. I keep the grid as clean as possible because I don’t want to force people to keep score a certain way.

    My one takeaway from that photo of the Dolphins is how freaking ridiculous biker shorts look compared to knee-length pants.

    Coupla notes:

    – The CBC broadcast of HNIC is in Punjabi each and every week. They’ve been doing this for three or four seasons now.

    – The HBIC Playoff Pool is running. Please read the information carefully, especially the stuff highlighted in orange.

    – If you have questions about the pool, please email me!

    As I don’t follow hockey but do follow hip hop, the abbreviation “HNIC” means something entirely different to me. That is all.

    I thought Griese looked fine.

    Also, I think NFL, NBA and NHL coaches should have to wear uniforms like baseball managers. Just once. Or repeatedly. Their choice.

    Griese was okay, but Marino obviously didn’t care, judging by his “get me out of here” expression and that right sock.

    Griese and Marino couldn’t have looked worse in their uniforms. For a moment like that, couldn’t the team have had someone tailor the pants and jerseys to fit properly and make sure the socks were pulled up before sending them out on stage? For a league that is typically spot on with marketing and fan events, how could they botch this photo-op so badly?

    Seeing the faux back yellow A’s jersey with the elephant patch and hearing about the Punjabi HNIC broadcasts makes me think of what a missed opportunity we had with the Fremont A’s.

    Did anyone else notice how the pic of Barkevious Mingo in the lead that his pocket square and tie happened to be Browns colors? Coincidence or did he know before hand?

    If you go to Nike’s website and look at each individual teams splash page, there are several teams (including Chargers, Bills and Broncos) that are shown with neck rolls photoshopped out. The jerseys shown for sale still have neck rolls. It’s an improvement for everyone, but boy are those Bills jerseys a beaut.

    Regarding the Dolphins – it wasn’t just Taylor wearing a combo that was never worn, it was also Marino. He’s wearing pants with the circa 1978-1985 stripes (although it’s probably the 1994 throwbacks because they have a Wilson “W” on them) with a circa 1991-1993 jersey (with the “JR” in the stripe).

    The SI cover photo was probably taken in 71. You can see the jersey piping under the jacket. The “1973 team portrait” is the ’72 team portrait. Mike Epstein (top row,) was not on the team in ’73. Additionally, the ’74 card portrait was from ’73. That’s how Topps rolled back then. They went to press before the season started, with pics from the previous year … hence, the “Traded” update sets.

    Colorado St. doesn’t have a varsity baseball program so those stirrups belong to the club baseball team. Doesn’t change the fact that they look great!

    I’m curious as to what kind of control a university has on club team uniforms, and if it varies from university to university. Anybody?

    I played club ball for another school, and we never used official university logos on our hats or uniforms. I am not sure what the official school policy was, but I know we initially stayed away from it because we didn’t think it was allowed. One year we added an official logo to some of our team apparel (undershirts, shorts, etc). Not sure if the policy was different for these items or there was a restriction that was later lifted.

    It was also required that we include a disclaimer on our team web site that stated we were a club made up of university students but not necessarily university-sponsored (I forget the exact wording).

    Anyone here ever ordered baseball stirrups from Robert Marshall? I wanna order some, but cant get his email address to work.

    Love some help here…thanks guys

    Wow. Today is a great day for red-blooded American civil rights loving fans. Jason Collins (I completely forgot he was still in the NBA, but I absolutely remember him and his Jarron from Stanford) came out.
    Buried in that article is a little uni nugget: for Boston and Washington, as a little tribute to gay rights (and, in retrospect, probably a prelude to his coming out), Jason took #98 as a tribute to The Trevor Project, established in 1998. Brother Jarron preferred #31 as a Reggie Miller fan, as was covered in Paul Lukas’s column mentioning a subjective story for every uniform number.

    I’ll be chuffed when I begin seeing kids wearing Jason Collins jerseys. This puts extra spring in my step, today.

    100% agree, Phil. I fully commend and respect Jason Collins for being “the first”, and I hope this will inspire others to step forward in all sports. This happened after the Vikings drafted a punter to force Chris Kluwe to “compete” for his job.

    If courage is how we define leaders, Jason Collins is a great leader. Much respect for him.

    Agreed, of course.

    I look forward to the day when this wouldn’t (and shouldn’t) be such earth-shattering news.

    Something that drives me nuts about seemingly controversial situations (who determines what is and isn’t controversial?) is that it is immediately linked to everything that happens to those people later.

    There is no evidence to suggest that the Vikings drafted a punter because of Kluwe’s outspokeness, but that is the leap people will make.

    Collins has played for 6 different teams during the past 12 years. He admits in his article that what he brings to the floor is the ability to dish out fouls and take charges. He is 34 years old. But if he is not re-signed this year, people will make that leap that it is because he is gay.

    I’m with Phil. I don’t consider this news, and can’t wait for the day when others don’t consider it news either.

    Third on the bandwagon of “Good for Jason Collins, but I can’t wait until coming out isn’t a story anymore.”

    The reason it is news is because he’s the first MALE pro athlete in any of the four major sports to admit he was gay while still being an active member in one of those four leagues.

    I’m not commending him for being gay. That would be as ridiculous as commending him for being black. He is who he is, and he shouldn’t have to hide who is from the world. What I am commending him for is his courage in stepping forward as the first active gay MALE pro athlete.

    As for Kluwe, he feels his outspokenness on his social activism played a major part in the Vikings drafting a punter. I didn’t say it – I just read and repeated it.

    So, a marginal player (i.e. a back-up linebacker/special teams player, a punter) says they were cut for being outspoken, and it’s true? It’s one of those claims people can make that is almost impossible to prove wrong, so they get away with it. The Vikings did the same thing with their kicker (Longwell) last year, but it wasn’t controversial because he wasn’t outspoken?

    On a uni related note, one of Kluwe’s fans are using a CircumsizetheVikingsNumbers hastag.

    “I’m with Phil. I don’t consider this news, and can’t wait for the day when others don’t consider it news either.”


    Whoa there.

    I must certainly DO consider this news and welcome news at that. I am just looking forward to the time (in the not too distant future) when a male athlete’s sexuality is no big deal, so it’s not *news* if he declares he is gay.

    Shouldn’t have taken this long, but homophobia is obviously a huge problem in the locker rooms of major sports.

    I couldn’t care less about what Kluwe thinks in terms of the Vikings drafting a punter, but I’m just repeating how he, as an active activist for gay players in the NFL, views the situation. Brendon Ayanbadejo is unsigned as well, and he has been outspoken in the off-season as well. Does it mean anything to us? No. Nor should it. It’s just Kluwe’s view on why they drafted a punter.

    Whether he’s right or wrong, that’s his opinion and his perspective of the situation. All I did was mention that he feels this is the reason.

    Sorry Phil, I didn’t mean to misquote you. I was referencing your longing for when this is no longer news, but placed my personal feeling that it isn’t news today in a misleading part of my statement.

    For my money, having the Dolphins go back to the Griese era unis would have been ideal. The new “new” is old.

    Yeah, that’s probably the case… of course, it doesn’t change that the whole idea is pretty lame to begin with.

    Such a shame he wasn’t I’d love to send him there to infect the Niners. LOL

    Isn’t the Charger thing due to the Nike people and jerseys being at the draft but not necessarily providing them to the local facility just yet. Particularly with such minor changes. Though make the bolt on the pants without an encompassing stripe, go to grey masks, and go forward with draft jersey changes and we’ve made a marked upgrade.

    If they could only fix one of the big Reebok derps, and get the shoulder bolts back over the numbers like they should be…

    I just realized the main thing I don’t like about the Dolphins jerseys, and it took seeing them next to Jason Taylor to really see it.

    They have no SHINE to them anymore!

    I know it’s the uniform material, but it’s like a matte finish jersey…

    I truly hope those teams are eliminating the bogus flywire collars. That is incredibly great news. Although the Saints probably look the worst with that collar (and the Rams are up there too) so let’s hope they also ditch it.

    There are two different issues here: the neck roll and the Nikelace (i.e., the Flywire).

    Many teams appear to be eliminating the neck roll, but only one (the Bills) seem to be scrapping the Nikelace.

    Sorry Paul, I confused the two terms. I was thinking one thing and writing another.

    While I’m on the Rams, the team’s once proud image has become a joke. The Rams still have the best helmets in the NFL, but the team’s uniform changes keep getting worse. Last year they eliminated the gold pants, which was easily their best look (especially with white uniforms, a very nice aesthetic). They also frequently wear the unbearable blue-on-blue monochrome look. Add the pathetic Nike collar and it’s a complete mess.

    Enough with the nonsense. Get a normal collar back, reinstate the gold pants, and retire the white and blue pants (if you must, keep the white pants for special occasions). But it’s probably best to ditch this uniform set altogether and wear the throwbacks permanently. We all know this worked for the 49ers, and the Rams’ old yellow/blue look is absolutely classic. If the team ever moves back to LA, returning to royal blue and yellow should be mandatory.

    I have always greatly liked the Rams’ horn-shouldered jerseys. Oddly enough, it’s most likely that the first time I saw those Rams uniforms was in Heaven Can Wait, as it was several years before I started paying attention to the NFL in earnest.

    The team is suggesting calling the team the “Sevens” for short much like “76ers” gets shortened to “Sixers”.

    Then maybe they should call them the Delaware 87s instead. that’s got a much better ring than 87ers.

    And “Sevs” would be a much better short version.

    It’s no clunkier than 76ers. Same number of syllables. Same basically unique-in-the-language formulation of a number as an occupation noun. The only difference is that we’re already kind of used to saying “Seventy Sixers” while “Eighty Seveners” is new to us.

    While I see your logic with regard to 87s instead of 87ers, there’s already a team that calls itself the 51s instead of the 51ers, and that has always seemed more awkward to me. As uncommon as the [digit]ers formula is, [digit]s is even more unusual. “Sevs” probably is the better nickname.

    The Ottawa 67’s of the Ontario Hockey League come to mind for me. As a result, anyone saying exty-seveners sounds more awkward to me than exty-sevens, mainly because I’m used to Ottawa being the “sixty-sevens”.

    It’s no clunkier than 76ers.

    Yes it is.

    5ers, 6ers, 8ers, 9ers, 10ers, Teeners: all perfectly acceptable.

    1ers, 2ers, 3ers, 4ers, 7ers, any-number-other-than-10-that-ends-in-zero-ers: all bad.

    If we’re just going to make up arbitrary rules, then they need to at least have some pretense of internally consistent logic. In which case, either both 7ers and 10ers are on the good list, or both are on the bad list. No non-BS list can divide the two, since each ends with the same “eners” syllable sequence.

    If both 9ers, where the number also ends with an N, and 10ers are on the good list, then so is 7ers.

    Still, I bet we can agree that it’s a good thing Montreal had the Expos instead of the 67ers!

    I hope Chris Hansen catches Jordan in a honeymoon good mood and swipes the Bobcats. I nominate the T-Wolves to move to the Eastern conference.

    I’d be happy just to escape the Northwest Division. But the Eastern Conference would in theory be easier to make a run at the playoffs providing they can actually start winning so I’d be good with that move. Living in the NE it would mean I’d get to see them play a lot more.

    Hearing an ESPN update on the radio about an NFL player and oh by the way he’s gay is sickening. That’s like saying so and so is great!..but he’s also black..seriously ESPN???embarrassing. Come on, news like this is not news, it’s boredom and sell sell sell. To me it’s……hmmm life?

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