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The jersey shown above is currently available for purchase on eBay. The seller claims that it was worn by William VanDeSteeg, who was a linebacker on the Ravens’ practice squad in 2009 but never made it onto an NFL roster. If the jersey really is legit and not a counterfeit knockoff, it has one of the more unusual NOBs we’ve ever seen. Consider:
• Internet references to VanDeSteeg all show his surname as intercapped with no spaces, but the NOB shows it as “Van De Steeg,” with two spaces.
• Instead of being all-caps, the NOB includes lowercase letters.
• The “T” is capped, when it should really be lowercase.
• The “g” is base-aligned, instead of having the descender projecting below the baseline.
What a mess! I’m sure some of you are saying, “Chinese knockoff,” but why would anyone make a counterfeit jersey for a player who never made it past the taxi squad? Moreover, the eBay seller is a Ravens specialist with a near-perfect feedback rating, so he appears to be reputable. Definitely a weird one.
Update: Reader MJ Kurs-Lasky has found an action shot of VanDeSteeg wearing this jersey! It’s from a practice on Aug. 11, 2009 (click to enlarge):
(My thanks to longtime Uni Watch reader/pal Joe Hilseberg for bringing this jersey to my attention.)
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