The Raiders wore their gorgeous Color Rush throwbacks last Thursday night. But as reader Kevin Werther noticed, there were some inconsistencies in their captaincy patches, with some players wearing the black “C” and other players wearing silver (shown above).
That seemed odd. So I looked at photos from a recent game in which they wore their primary white jerseys — Nov. 27 in Seattle — and found the same issue:
Hmmm. So then I looked at photos of their most recent home game — Dec. 4 against the Chargers — and, sure enough, found the same issue:
Let’s stop here and make a few observations. First, I was surprised to see the Raiders using white captaincy patches, especially on their black jerseys. I had recalled them using black patches. And second, after looking at a bunch of photos, it appeared that only two players were wearing the black “C”: quarterback Derek Carr and wide receiver Davante Adams:
Carr’s situation is a head-scratcher. As a longtime captain, he really should have a gold “C” with gold stars, which is what a player gets to wear after his fourth year of captaincy.
Adams’s situation is also puzzling, because he’s wearing four stars even though this is his first season with the Raiders, so he should have just one star. But teams have been deviating from that protocol for a while now, often giving multiple stars to newly acquired veteran players, so I guess it’s not so surprising, even if it’s confusing.
With all that in mind, my next step was to look at photos from last season, beginning with the home black jersey. As I suspected, they had black patches last year. Moreover, Carr had the gold treatment, while everyone else had the silver “C”:
Then I looked at the primary white jerseys from last year. Same thing — black patches, gold for Carr, silver for everyone else:
Finally, I looked up how they handled the Color Rush throwbacks last season. Turns out it was the same as this season: white patches with a black “C” for Carr (Adams wasn’t yet on the team), silver for everyone else:
So it appears that the Raiders decided to make several changes to their captaincy patches this season:
- They changed the patches on the primary jerseys from black to white, to match the Color Rush patches.
- They decided that Carr’s long-term captaincy would be represented by a black “C” and black stars, instead of gold. (I can see how black might feel more Raiders-y, although it’s definitely less Vegas-y.)
- For some reason they also gave the black “C” to Adams.
I didn’t note any of this in my NFL Season Preview because the Raiders didn’t wear captaincy patches during the preseason. Obviously, I wish I had noticed the changes sooner, but I don’t think I’ve seen a single down of Raiders football this year. Big thanks to Kevin Werther for spotting it in last Thursday’s game and sending me down this fun rabbit hole!