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Monday Morning Uni Watch

Hiya. I’m on vacation this week, but I still put together Monday Morning Uni Watch from the road. How’s that for dedication? Anyway, odd scene yesterday in Minnesota, as Packers wideout Jones wore a hoodie under his jersey! Lots of people asked me if I’d ever seen that before — can’t name any specific names, but I’m pretty sure I’ve seen placekickers and/or punters do it on occasion. Probably not a “regular” player, though.

Before the game was over, the hoodie already had its own Twitter account. There are additional photos of the hoodie here, and you can see Jones explaining why he wore it here.

Was the hoodie legal? Yes, according to NFL officiating guru Mike Pereira:

In other news from around the league yesterday:

• There were several interesting things about yesterday’s Chargers/Chiefs game. For starters, the Chargers wore their powder-blue alts. In addition, the Chiefs went mono-white with red-topped socks for the second consecutive week. That’s a combo they hadn’t previously worn since 1994, and hadn’t worn in a non-throwback, non-preseason situation since 1967. Also, The Chargers retired LaDainian Tomlinson’s number during a halftime ceremony. The surprising thing, at least to me, was the team’s retired-number banner design template, which I hadn’t noticed before:

This is the same design that the Chargers use for all of their retired number banners. Surprising that there are no lightning bolts, no? And those polka dot gradations look awful.

Meanwhile, Tomlinson’s number was also featured on the midfield helmet logo:

Finally, I’ve always loved the old logo that the Chargers put in the end zone yesterday:

The thing is, that’s a throwback logo, and the Chargers’ powder blues are not throwbacks — they’re just alts. They use the modern, non-throwback lightning bolt designs on the shoulders and pants, and they don’t have the uni numbers on the helmets. If you’re gonna use the retro end zone logo, great — but then make the uni a proper throwback to match.

• Speaking of the Chargers, why did safety Jimmy Wilson have these little yellow bands around his shins?

• The Dolphins wore white at home, which forced the Cowboys to wear blue for the second consecutive week.

• Texans cornerback Charles James was wearing argyle Texans socks prior to the game.

• The G.I. Joke-isms now extend to players’ pregame headphones. Sigh.

• No photo, but I have it on good authority that Raiders quarterback Derek Carr was missing the Al Davis perma-memorial decal on his helmet.

• Washington wideout DeSean Jackson wore leopard-print shoes.

• And speaking of Washington, defensive end Jason Hatcher said after the game that the team is on the receiving end of so many penalty calls because the refs don’t like the team’s name.

(Big thanks to Jake Copp, Chris Flinn, David Kendrick, Gene Sanny and, especially, Phil for their contributions.)

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RSS news: If you’ve been having trouble with the Uni Watch RSS feed, look for it here. Let me know if you encounter any further problems.

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Holiday T-shirt reminder: In case you missed it last week, we’ve launched three new designs that are not technically part of the Uni Watch T-Shirt Club (no sleeve patch, no month designation) but are very much in keeping with the spirit of the project. Take a look (click to enlarge):

Each of these three designs — “Vertically Arched,” “Radially Arched,” and the plain script with nothing on the back — is available in all three colors shown (white, black and grey). In addition, each design and color is available in three formats: short-sleeved tee, long-sleeved tee, and sweatshirt. Plus the plain script design is also available as a hoodie with pockets.

These shirts are available here from now through Dec. 9, which means they’ll deliver in time for Christmas.

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Collect ’em all reminder: Meanwhile: If you ordered all 12 of the T-Shirt Club designs and qualify for the year-end prize (which, in case you missed it earlier, will be an embroidered patch featuring this design), please prove that you’ve collected ’em all by either (a) taking a photo of all 12 shirts or (b) taking screen shots of your 12 order-confirmation emails from Teespring and putting the 12 shots into a folder. Then email the photo or the folder to (please note that this is a new address — do not send your proof to the regular Uni Watch email address), and be sure to include your mailing address so I know where to mail the patches once they’re ready to go.

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Holiday advertiser shout-outs: As you may have noticed, three longtime Uni Watch allies have new ads running on the site for the holiday shopping push. All are worthy of your consideration:

• Jeff Suntala, working under the name There Used to Be a Ballpark, produces beautiful posters of past and current baseball stadiums.

• For years now I’ve been featuring Rob Ullman’s pin-up-style illustrations of women wearing sports jerseys. If you’d like to hire him to do an illo of your partner — or of yourself! — he’s accepting commissions.

Oxford Pennant produces beautiful wool felt pennants — so much nicer than the stiff, synthetic ones typically sold at stadiums. Made in the USA, too.

I’m proud to have all of these advertisers associated with the site. Please consider them for your holiday shopping needs.

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Sorry, no Ticker today, cuz I’m on vacation (I’m dedicated, but there are limits). We’ll definitely have a Ticker tomorrow; not sure about the rest of the week. Hectic time, with Thanksgiving and all. Thanks for understanding.

Comments (52)

    “For years now I’ve been featuring Rob Ullman’s pin-up-style illustrations…”


    Happy Birthday, Rob!

    Tried to visit Rob’s site from the link provided but blocked at work due to “pornography”. That seems ludicrous. Cartoon drawings of women in sports jerseys? Sheesh. Sorry Rob, will check it out from home!

    Peter King went on a uni-related diatribe in his MMQB column. Pretty valid points all around, but nothing that hasn’t been said before.

    “6. I think I’m not saying uniforms should be sacred. When I was growing up, teams basically had two of them: home and away. In recent years, it’s changed, of course. But this constant fiddling with everything players and coaches wear, and the pink and the camouflage and the prison-stripe uniforms and so many throw-up throwbacks … it’s out of control. Isn’t there a uniform cop in the NFL offices who, very occasionally, says, “We’re making ourselves looks bad here. We’re a parody of ourselves. Are we seriously allowing our teams to looks different for more than half of each season?” The NFL so bastardizes everything about the uniform that it’s altogether laughable when they fine a player for having some odd-color shoes or different eye-black, or fine a player such as Cam Heyward when he puts his late father’s name in small letters on his eye black. Example: Marcus Mariota, wearing this all-Carolina Blue uniform for the Color Rush (!!!) game and blue shoes, and with the Salute to Service camouflage towel tucked into his waist, dives to the pylon for a touchdown Thursday night. Camera goes to the sideline. There’s coach Mike Mularkey, with the camouflage headset, camouflage cap and camouflage lapel pin. Last month, it would have been the pink towel flying on Mariota’s dive to the pylon, with pink cleats, and the coach on the sidelines with the pink hat and pink-accented headset. In nine of 17 weeks this season, the NFL makes the uniform not a uniform. And in some other weeks, the uniform is something that’s not a uniform. In the Oxford Dictionary, uniform is defined as “not changing in form or character; remaining the same in all cases and at all times.” The NFL does not have uniforms anymore. The NFL has costumes.

    7. I think I have one question for the NFL marketers: Just how many of the 256 regular-season games this year–Six? Nine?–are the players and the coaches allowed to dress in the traditional uniforms, instead of being billboards for whatever causes the NFL chooses?

    8. I think, while we’re at it, get off my lawn.

    9. I think these are the worst uniforms I have seen in the current NFL iteration of uniforms:

    a. The Steelers’ current alternate convict/bumble-bee jobs.

    b. Jacksonville’s stadium-mustard pale yellow jobs with the bizarre square brown stomach patch Thursday night.

    c. The Bucs’ uniforms–not because of the color scheme, which I like, but because of the hard-to-read jersey numbers.”

    When I saw the 21 added to the midfield helmet at Jack Murphy and the old endzone graphics, my first thought was that there was something going on relative to link. #GetOffMyLawnPeterKingYouYoungHooligan!

    I thought the same thing.

    For the late afternoon game I had a choice of watching Green Bay/Minnesota or Kansas City/San Diego. When I saw the midfield helmet, old end zone paint job and sunshine it was an easy choice. Only thing that would have made it better would have been a competitive game broadcast by the late Charlie Jones.

    looks like the yellow bands on the Charger guys legs are the tops of a sock (the other players have a yellow band too, but it’s attached). might have a case of not wanting to get fined, but not liking the sock it was attached to, so he just tore off what he needed and wore them….. but i prefer to think he was putting on the socks over-zelously and the yellow bands tore away :)

    yeah in that same photo the other players have them on top of what look like black tape or on top of the socks. Funny.

    Just wanted to mention that Jeff’s drawings are terrific. I bought a three stadium set for my brother last Christmas, as he’s involved in art and design and this shows team spirit without having to wear anything special.
    Affordable, fast shipping and they come in a thick tube. Easy to frame. Nice detail. I almost reneged and kept them for myself.

    Or us Expos fans.

    To be fair, making Stade Olympique a visual treat worthy of all that detail and care would be quite an accomplishment.

    As for the yellow band on the chargers players leg; I’ve always thought players wear those bands so they don’t have to wear three pairs of socks. (Blue, yellow and nfl mandated white bottom)

    It’s really a shame we haven’t figured out the technology to make a single sock that just happens to be white at the bottom, and other colors at the top.

    For some reason (and I’m just hypothesizing here) I think it goes back to the days when players wore stirrups underneath a low white. Clearly, we haven’t needed this in 30+ years, but the *style* remains. While for some teams, the low white still looks OK, what I don’t understand is why there is still a low white mandate (for teams who wear a solid color sock). In cases where there is basically no white anywhere else on the uniform (sometimes not even numbers), the low white mandate is ridiculous. Time to get rid of this vestigial requirement.

    I’d agree with not requiring low whites, but I think there should still be some contrasting color below the knee. The mono-black Saints, for example, should have gold socks, or at least black socks with gold striping of some kind.

    The NFL issued socks are just that: one sock that’s colored on top and white on the bottom. There’s a lot of hosiery freelancing when it comes to that stuff, obviosuly, as many players don’t wear the team issued socks and wear colored leggings in combinations with a low white sock or other brands of socks that are not white on the bottom.

    Is G.I. Joke finally over? Can we please move on to Play 60 or whatever?

    Bunch of Marines had field passes in Miami and sailors got to welcome Cardinals onto field.

    I thought the military’s job is to defend the country and not constantly parade around sports events for propaganda’s sake.

    I finally let it all out.

    Agreed, but we have to remember that because we have a professional military, recruiting becomes very important. I really think a big part of the “honor the troops” promotions are to attract young people into signing up so they can be honored and called “heroes” themselves someday.

    That’s why the NFL and college football are ideal places for this – the military knows a lot of young men are watching.

    I don’t have a problem with the Defense Department spending money on advertising to support recruitment. I don’t have a problem with the NFL, or any league or team, accepting the Defense Department’s advertising dollars. And I don’t have a problem with teams or leagues making patriotic displays. What I do have a problem with is the fakery of pretending that the recruiting advertisements are “patriotic” displays by teams or leagues, rather than sponsored advertising messages. If something is a sponsored message, then by gum it needs to be labeled as such. The announcer saying, “And now, please rise as we honor our wounded veterans in attendance today, sponsored by the Army National Guard” would suffice.

    Love this comment to the source page for the DC-NFL-Officiating story:

    “RG3 made the same excuse about his Wounded Knee”


    BKLYN mask is pretty sweet except for the Gorton’s Fish Stix logo on the front. Connectioned to Brooklyn would be?

    I’m kind of surprised that Paul is complaining about the retro endzones in San Diego not matching the unis. Correct me if I’m wrong, but the team couldn’t change their uni set this year, correct? So the choice would either be to have a mismatched field logo or just do the same standard thing. Given those choices, I’m for anything that puts that retro logo on the field. It doesn’t bother me at all that the unis didn’t match.

    Okay, you’re wrong. ;)

    Why couldn’t the Chargers change their uni set this year? It was introduced in 2007, meaning they’re four years past the minimum uniform lifespan.

    Also, teams can add throwbacks to their current uniform sets without changing the uniform, and I know the Chargers have worn that uniform previously (possibly not in the Nike era, but definitely not too long ago), so they should have just dusted it off and worn it again.

    I’d like to put forth a theory.

    The Nike Sweatbox inadvertently reveals a reason why the particular uniform tropes for each sport exist: fabric. More than any other factor, I think fabric determines why uniform design takes a particular evolutionary path.

    Look at baseball, almost since its inception, baseball uniforms have used the same fabric for jerseys and pants. As a result, you can use the same stuff for both without having an obvious contrast. This allows the uniform to be uniform. All the other elements which are different materials (undershirt, cap, stirrups) and usually a contrasting color.

    Now look at hockey, for hockey uniforms traditionally the socks and sweater were of similar material but the breezers are something else. In the early days it was canvas and later nylon. As a result even if the breezers were the same color as the sweater there would be a different look. That can lend well to using a different color. Even today, despite the modern ability to match fairly well, a majority of NHL clubs use a different color for their breezers than the jersey.

    That’s an interesting point.

    Baseball and basketball made their jerseys and pants/shorts out of the same fabric, so monochrome was the order of the day. Football jerseys and pants have always been made of different materials, so contrast evolved to be the norm.

    I ref football in Canada and lots of kids wear hoodies (bunnyhugs if you are from Saskatchewan) and we basically make the kids tuck them in under their jersey during warm-ups. No one wants to see a kid get grabbed by the hood and brought down. Not a penalty, but could be dangerous.

    And yes, I’m surprised nobody took him down by grabbing the hood. Maybe they thought they’d get flagged for horse collar, but those of us watching on television knew it was perfectly legal.

    I’m really struggling to see how there’s any practical difference between the illegal horse collar tackle, and grabbing of a hoodie. The player is being pulled down from the back of the neck either way.

    A player who chooses to wear a hoodie under the jersey should be have to wear it up under their helmet.

    Negative. You can’t tackle a person by grabbing the inside of the jersey or shoulder pad collar, i.e., two mandatory pieces of every NFL uniform. If a player chooses to wear extra appendages, defenders are free to use those to tackle the player. If defenders were prohibited from grabbing extra appendages to tackle a player, it would be advantageous for players to hang things off their uniforms that the defenders would be prohibited from grabbing. Therefore, the rule states that players adding appendages to their uniform do so at their own risk in order to eliminate the potential advantages gained from doing so. A hood is no different than long hair or a towel.

    The Broncos have link separating their navy socks from the white.

    I had thought Denver had socks with all three colors woven in to satisfy the “low whites” requirement evenly for all players, but that doesn’t link.

    They do, just as all the other teams do, but there’s no requirement that players have to wear that specific sock. Some players (Manning, offensive linemen, the players generally less concerned about individuality and/or “looking fly”) wear the team issued socks that are knitted with a blue top, orange stripe and a white bottom. Others wear blue leggings with a white crew sock with an orange band or even orange tape at the top. Others eschew the look altogether and just wing it however they want down there. Every team, though, has team issued Nike socks with the team pattern knit into them.

    I like bunnyhugs. I’m saying that from now on. So if I need my hoodie, I would say ” Hey ! Throw me my bunnyhug!”

    And in multiples ” These bunnyhugs are a great buy !”

    Helmet looks cool. Wonder how it will work on a speedflex helmet.

    I guess with the camo pattern every jersey will be unique?

    Still waiting for those glow-in-the-dark unis.

    I know the red britches get a lot of love on these pages; AFAIC they kind of overwhelm the uniform. The white pants befit this team.

    Chiefs in white pants on the road 2 weeks in a row and the Chargers in powder blue in the same game? My nightmares are coming to life again! Tell me I was hallucinating after having to watch my team make yet another 93 year old backup quarterback look like Joe Montana.

    The polka dot gradations in the retired LT banner look like a different type of material so wind can blow through the various flags at the Murph without tearing them to shreds.

    The Browns will be going all orange (ugh!) next Monday vs the Ravens according to Tony Rizzo (Cleveland sports radio/tv host), on his tv show last night.

    The Cleveland Browns will be going all orange (ugh!) next Monday night according to Tony Rizzo (Cleveland radio/tv host) on his tv show last night.

    I disagree with one of the previous comments. I think it’s fine to have military members in uniform watching on the sidelines watching an NFL game. If a team gives 10 or 20 field passes to some lucky serviceman that’s great. What annoys me is what annoys many of us. The constant in your face patriotism and GI Joe uniform crap. It just seems so false.

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