NFL uniforms (throwbacks/alternates)

It’s boring here, so I ranked every NFL team’s uniforms based on their current standard home and away uniforms. I have also been thinking a lot lately about throwback and alternate uniforms, so I’ve included my thoughts on each team’s non-standard options. Broken up into parts, so as not to make any post too long.
32. Carolina- zero old-school potential. Period. I guess they still use the blue shirtoccasionally, and even though I’m not a fan, it’s a pretty distinctive blue, and I approve of being able to look at a TV screen and immediately knowing who is playing. Overall, my least favorite NFL uniform, but it only barely beats out the next one.
31. Denver- if I was in charge, I’d get rid of their current uniforms entirely and go back to the “Orange Crush” uniforms. I also kinda dig the yellow/brown duds because they’re distinctive and unique, but I’d probably leave them in the closet where they belong. Nowadays, I think they should stick to white pants and white/blue jerseys.
30. Seattle- a mixed bag… their throwbacks would be boring compared to their current duds, but they insist on wearing all-blue most of the time at home, and the effect is off-putting. I liked the lime-green jerseys, though, mostly because they were distinctive and broke up the monotony of what I consider a strange shade of blue-green.
29. Philadelphia- *why *the make-everything-darker mentality? There was *nothing *wrong with Kelly green, but I don’t remember seeing the Eagles wear it since they abandoned it. The yellow and blueuniforms, while distinctive, aren’t particularly attractive, so I’d leave them in the closet. If they must have the dark green, I think they should at least avoid the black jerseys, although I think the white ones look OK with green pants.

  1. Atlanta- some throwback potential, but most people wouldn’t notice unless they used the red helmetsagain. Their alternates mostly consist of adding more black, which I’m usually not a fan of. White pants with red/white jerseys, please, and use red helmets for throwback games.
  2. Tennessee- I like seeing the Oilers throwbacks when they break them out, but they always use older versions of them and I wish they’d use the final Oilers uniformsoccasionally. As far as I know, their alternates consist of different combos of navy/sky/white jerseys and pants. No real opinions about that, except I’d nix the navy shirt/sky pants combo.
  3. Jacksonville- no throwbacks for these guys either; they’re too new. Their alternates usually consist of black jerseys and/or pants, which I’m not a fan of (especially the all-black look), but I have to say it’s better than seeing them try a jaguar-print pattern! Plain gold might be OK, though.
  4. Tampa Bay- I really like the old orange logo and uniforms, but I can see the need for the change. Bright orange unis had become symbolic of a losing franchise, and the change was drastic and complete (unlike what the Lions did this year). The throwbackssure were fun to see this year, though. I like their current scheme though, and I’m glad they’ve resisted the temptation to add more black.

Double post

  1. New England- I loathe the Patriots with every fiber of my being, but I’m a big fan of their throwbacks this year, and would like to see them go back to them full-time. I know that won’t happen, so as long as they keep losing to the Colts and stay away from those god-awful silver/gray jerseysthey’ve worn, I’ve got no problem with them. Actually, I think a red jersey in their current scheme could look OK, particularly if they create white pants to go with them.
  2. Houston- I think the Houston Oilers uniforms should stay with Tennessee, even though I also approve of the deal the Browns and Ravens have worked out. I like the blue/white jerseys with white pants, and I’m OK with the red jerseys as alternates if they keep away from the red pantsat the same time.
  3. Buffalo- old-school goodness! Tons of cool uniforms from the '60’s and '70’s. I’d be alright with them using a red jersey as an alternate, but I don’t really see it happening. Just use white pants with dark shirts and blue pants with white shirts.
  4. Baltimore- a throwback uni would just draw all kinds of ire from Cleveland or Indy fans, besides just being really confusing, so I don’t see it happening. Alternates… here’s a rare case where more black is a good thing. They’re black birds! I guess I don’t mind the purple as an alternate, but stick with black shirts, black pants otherwise.
  1. Cincinnati- throwbacks would be orange helmets with “BENGALS” written on the side, which is boring and too similar to Cleveland’s. Probably not gonna happen. Lots of alternate possibilities, with white/black/orange shirts and white/black pants, and I’m actually OK with all of the shirts. Just get rid of the black pants.
  2. Detroit- their throwbacksare OK, just less distinctive because they remove the logo from the helmets. I really don’t see the point of the recent uniform change… the franchise could have done a lot for the people of Detroit with the money they spent on changing every logo and script in Detroit and asking their fans to do the same. Blue/white shirts, silver pants, and leave it alone for a while.
  3. Arizona- not much to work with for throwbacks, even with lots of history going all the way back to the Chicago and St. Louis Cardinals. Their uniforms have stayed pretty similar for decades. These days they only use four color combinations (red/white jerseys, red/white pants). That’s as alternate as they get; I just hope they never try black or gold shirts. I prefer their red shirts with white pants, and vice versa.
  4. Miami- can you believe the Dolphins have had their current color scheme for 13 years? I don’t remember them going back to the old, lighter teal in that time, though. I think it’d be cool to see sometime. In the meantime, I have no problem with any combination of teal and white tops and bottoms they want to try, as long as they burn the orange jerseys. Teal is distinctive enough with the bright orange accents.
  1. New Orleans- the Saints’ uniforms don’t really move me too much one way or the other, but there’s no doubt it’s a classic/classy look. There are no real throwback uniforms for these guys to pick from. I think the gold jersey/black pantslook is interesting and unique, but I haven’t seen them wear it that often. I’d prefer they try it out more, maybe in place of the all-black get-up that’s been done to death by the Saints and others.
  2. San Diego- I’m in the camp that thinks the powder-blues are one of the all-time great uniforms, so I never mind seeing them. The modern powder-bluesare also their current alternate uniforms as well, so I obviously approve of them, too. Surprisingly, as far as I know, the Chargers haven’t tried their navy shirts with their navy pants. Good on them.
  3. New York Giants- in a way, the Giants’ current uniforms are throwbacks already, and I don’t think most people have a desire to see the GIANTS script again, so I don’t know what to say about NYG throwbacks except to say that I think the 1975 logois interesting, but overly busy. Nowadays, I like all the Giants’ uniform combinations, especially the white jersey with the plain red letters/numbers.
  4. New York Jets- again, the current uniforms are throwback-looking. I don’t know if I’ll ever understand why they always have to go darker, but I know it’s pretty much the status quo. I have no desire to see the 1978-1997 stylereturn, but I like the old one with a jet on the helmet rather than just a script. Here’s one case where I prefer the dark pants with the white jersey, and vice versa.
  1. Cleveland- not much to throw back to… an elf mascotthat would get laughed out of the stadium (although they never used that on their helmets, as far as I know), and numbers on the helmets, which I wouldn’t mind all that much. Brown/white jerseys and white pants look best to me, and I HATE the orange shirts.
  2. San Francisco- it’s funny to me that the 49ers had silverinstead of gold in their uniforms in the past, but I can’t see them doing that again. I like that they wear the scarlet red again and moved away from the white pants to the gold ones, but the 49ers are another team that rarely mixes things up very much. White pants wouldn’t be the worst thing if they wanted an alternate uniform, but I dig their current unis.
  3. Chicago- another team whose uniforms have stayed pretty consistent over the years. STOP with the orange shirtsand navy pants, though. Some things need not be messed with, and near the top of that list is a 90-year-old football franchise.
  4. St. Louis- if I’m not mistaken, the horn on the Rams’ helmets is the oldest continuously used logo in football. Therefore, all of their throwbacks would be color variations. It’s a very good, strong image, but it’s just boring to me. I don’t hate anything about their current uniforms, but nothing really impresses me either. They get up to the 9 position just for their stick-to-it-iveness.
  1. Minnesota- the Vikings have had essentially the same uniform during their entire existence. Did anyone other than Vikings fans even notice their helmet change a few years ago? They don’t wear all-purple unis very often, but although I don’t think actual Vikings would have approved of purple, I don’t mind the look. At least they’ve never tried gold pants or jerseys.
  2. Kansas City- I personally dig the Dallas Texansthrowbacks, particularly because they’re so similar to the Chiefs unis that they don’t really cause any confusion for anybody. I’m not sure if the Chiefs have ever done gold jerseys, but here’s hoping they never do. I don’t mind the red pants/white jersey look too much, but overall I’d stick with the white pants.
  3. Washington- I like the Redskins’ throwbacks, especially the gold/white spearon the red helmet. But they’re all cool, in my opinion. Not a big fan of the red-on-red-on-red look that they sometimes wear today, though. Keep it simple: red pants with white jerseys and vice versa, and please, never try gold jerseys or pants.
  4. Oakland- another classic look that somehow fails to stir much emotion in me… I appreciate that it’s a classic design, but that’s about it. Throwbacks really only consist of switching the shield to a silver background and switching the black numbers on the white jersey to silver. It’s amazing to me that the Raiders, of all teams, have managed to avoid the all-black look (as far as I know), but I hope they continue to do so.
  1. Indianapolis- I don’t think I’ve *ever * seen the Colts in any kind of throwback or alternate, the only team I can say that about. The Indianapolis Colts have nothing to throwback to… since moving to Indy, they’ve changed facemask color a couple times and given blue pants a try, and that’s about it. But as much as I’m a fan of traditional uniforms, I’d be intrigued to see what the Colts could come up with… as long as it doesn’t include adding black everywhere! Gray would be fine, though, and I like the bucking broncologo that the Baltimore Colts used.
  2. Green Bay- some mildly interesting uniforms in the archives, including the blue/yellowones, but this is another team that should avoid the temptation to mess with a good thing as much as possible. Please, for the love of Og, let me never see gold jerseys.
  3. Pittsburgh- an absolutely perfect, classic look. I like the gold-helmetthrowbacks, but the current uniforms are just so good. The only thing I might change is the script of their jersey numbers. I know why they changed it (to match the script on their helmet numbers), but I prefer the blockier “varsity-style” numbers, and if they wanted the helmet numbers to match I think they should have changed the helmet numbers.
  4. Dallas- man, I hate the Cowboys, but their uniforms are perfect. Think about it: they took one of the most ubiquitous symbols in human history and made sure that everytime you see one that happens to be navy blue, you’ll only think of one thing. Early-'60’s throwbacks are cool, and their current uniforms have enough quirksfor an entire division (maybe conference) of teams. From the Dymo labels to the multiple different shades of blue and silver to the red, white, and blue stripes in 1976, they’re just iconic and fascinating.

A few thoughts to share:

  • Arizona. I really liked their old white jerseys, with the red/black shoulder stripes and the Arizona flag on one shoulder. Not a big fan of their new look.

  • Seattle. The lime-green they wore this year was nasty. I’d like it if they used a throwback to their old look, rather than an alternate.

  • Green Bay. They just don’t look right to me in blue and gold, even though I know they wore those colors for nearly 40 years. They rarely go with alternate uniforms, thankfully.

  • San Diego. I agree, their powder blue is just perfect. When they went back to the white helmets, I wish they would have gone back to powder blue, as well.

  • New York Giants. I much prefer the dark metallic blue on their current helmets, over the old blue. I really like the look of their alternate home uniform, with the red jerseys.

  • Dallas. They almost always wear the old white helments and navy-blue jerseys on Thanskgiving. I think they’re ugly.

  • Washington. A few years ago, their alternates were the burgundy helmets with the spear (from the late 60s, IIRC), and the different shade of burgundy jersey. I liked those a lot.

The Vikings new XFL-esque uniforms are an abortion as is the all purple combo. It’s absurd that they are ranked that high. They essentially wear the exact same unis as the Broncos and you have them ranked appropriately.

I assume you’re only ranking the alternates? Because otherwise there’s no way that the Panthers and Eagles would be in the basement while the Bills/Bengals/Seahawks aren’t somehow ranked in dead last.

As far as San Diego going blue on blue, they only did it once. They wore those for the game against the Dolphins that was moved to Sun Devil Stadium in 2003 because of major fires in the San Diego area. I have no cite for this, but word on the street is that the owner hated them so they’ve never been worn again. Since I also hated them (as, indeed, I ALWAYS hate the “pajama” look no matter who wears it), and since the Bolts lost that game badly, I wholeheartedly approve of the ban.

Whoa, easy. :slight_smile: This is just my opinion, brother, and I waiver a little bit from day to day depending on my mood. Looking back at my list now, I should probably have at least ranked da Bears above the Rams and Vikings, so it’s not perfect. Except for my top four… I stand by those.
I docked the Broncos big points for the helmet “stripe” and the whole desperate attempt to inject attitude into the logo. There was plenty in the old one: a pissed-off bronco snorting, rearing up and about to stomp your ass. Also, I don’t know if it was intentional, but I like the way the old logo kinda said, “Hey, Dallas, we got your ‘Big D’ right here!” The new one’s got a fucking Nike swoosh for a nostril, for chrissake!
As for the Vikings, I thought the stripes on the jersey looked like a big Viking cape, or at least as much as it could within the constraints of the color scheme and the basic shape of a shirt. I don’t know if they were going for that (and I doubt it), but the current Vikings unis never bothered me as much as they apparently bother you.

From my OP: “I ranked every NFL team’s uniforms based on their current standard home and away uniforms.” There’s no way to rank all 32 teams on their alternates, because some (Packers, Colts) don’t have them.

I ranked the Seahawks as near the bottom as I could, really. Carolina and Denver clearly have worse uniforms, in my opinion. I’ll agree that the Bills could be moved down the list a little, but I stand by my ranking for the Bengals.

I didn’t talk about the red jerseys in my post about the Giants, but that’s another one of those uniforms that I ought to appreciate but don’t. It’s pretty distinctive (bright, bright, OMG BRIGHT scarlet with plain white letters), but it’s just not attractive enough to my eyes.

Me too! And since I don’t care for red clothing, I think the Cardinals look especially ridiculous when they wear all raspberry red. Yes, it looks like PJ’s.

I gotta say, for the sake of brevity you could have just said “I like everything with white pants. I hate everything with black. I like distinctive colors, except when I don’t…” You may have only needed one post then.

Also, it’s pretty impressive how you’ve managed to type so much and say so little I could agree with. In nearly every case where you stated a preference for one of a team’s jerseys over another, I liked the other better. I’m an Eagles fan, and I hated the old green. You claimed to have liked it, but they basically shared it with the Jets (which you would seemingly not like, since it wasn’t distinctive). Their new darker green is unique to them, I think, in all of pro sports ( I can’t think of another team with a color like it… the Bucks come closest that I can find). No points for that from you though! Plus, I like their black jersey/green pants combo the best, which you would probably dislike the most.

Couple other notes: The Brown/yellow Denver uniform is disgusting. The lime greenSeattle unform you linked to is a literal abomination, and it might be the worst uni in all of pro sports. Plus, I’m not sold on the Cowboys having the top spot, they seem to have a schizo mess going on. A lot of your opinions are seemingly contradictory between teams too, so I wonder. Fun read though, thanks!

I’m glad the Seahawks are awful this year, because my exposure to the lime-green unis have been thankfully limited. I hope they get thrown deep into the team’s attic never to return after this season.

Here’s an old fuzzy home movie of the 1950s Packers gold jersey. Glad Vince went another direction… :slight_smile:

I recall, many years ago, reading a book about the early days of the AFL. The Broncos were among the teams which operated on a shoestring budget in those days. IIRC, their original, brown-and-yellow uniforms with the hideous vertically-striped socks, were purchased used, from a college all-star game. They wore them for two or three years, then, as legend has it, burned them.