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Washington Commanders Debut New All White Uni Set

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[Editor’s Note: Paul is on his annual August break from site (although he’s still writing his weekly Bulletin column and may pop up here on the blog occasionally). Deputy editor Phil Hecken is in charge from now through the end of the month.]

Good morning and a good Monday to all. I hope everyone had a pleasant weekend.

In case you missed it on Friday, we had a couple NCAAFB uni releases: new uniforms for UCF, as well as a special alternate “Miami Nights” uniform for the Canes. In addition, late yesterday Washington introduced a new uniform.

Now then…

After wearing their old gear for all their practices, the Washington Commanders finally debuted their new all-white uniform set this past weekend, in a game against the Carolina Panthers. It was a warm day at FedEx Field, so the Commanders wore white at home.

The new uniform features a burgundy helmet, with a satin finish, and contains a gold center stripe. Both sides of the helmet have the team’s new “folded W” logo, which is rendered in gold. As you can see from today’s splash photo as well as the one above, the team is wearing a “90 Years” patch on the left breast. Each of the team’s three different color jerseys (burgundy, white, black) has a different color patch, to blend in match the jersey color.

Once we saw the uniforms unveiled, we knew the all white was a fairly plain jersey, and, at least in promo photos, would be worn with white pants. What wasn’t apparent, or at least it didn’t jump out was just how bare-bones the new white uniform would be. Let’s start with the jersey.

It’s really a bright white (magnified by the game being played in the mid-day sun). Aside from the burgundy numbers, which feature a gradient lattice pattern, the only other color on the jersey is the tiny burgundy “WASHINGTON” wordmark, and sleeve caps that have a burgundy/white-lattice/black/white-lattice/burgundy pattern. For a team whose colors are burgundy and gold, the lack of gold anywhere on the jersey is disappointing. I don’t mind a simple, plain jersey, but this one seems a bit too plain. Oh wait, there is one bit of gold on the jersey…

…yep, the maker’s mark sure stands out as the only gold element on the entire jersey.

The back of the jersey is also pretty plain — NOB is actually in a nice big font in burgundy. Rear numbers have the same treatment (gradient lattice pattern) as the front numbers.

The rear of the jersey features a patch as well. Here’s a closeup:

It’s a roundel that also serves as a secondary anniversary patch, with the words “Washington Football” on the top, and the team’s championship seasons on the bottom. In the middle of the roundel are the folded W, the year established (1932) and three stars in the shape of a triangle.

The white pants are completely plain — no piping, no striping — just the maker’s mark on the front left hip (in burgundy). At least for their first preseason game (I don’t know if this will be SOP), the team wore solid white socks, which reminded me of when college teams go “Icy White” (or some other nonsense).

If that’s the look the team is going for, well, then they succeeded. But if they’re going to pair the white jersey and pants, the team desperately needs to add some color — preferably burgundy — for their socks.

The best thing about the new uniforms unveiled back in February is the helmet (which I quite like). But that’s it. There’s not much else about this uniform that screams “NFL Team” to me. I’m not saying the team purposefully tanked their rebrand, but it’s almost like owner Dan Snyder said, “OK, you made us change our name, so here’s what you’re gonna get.”

We also got to see the new endzone treatment of the team, which, perhaps not coincidentally, is also rather stoic in appearance. “COMMANDERS” in bold gold lettering (see, they CAN use gold!) with one solid gold line above and below the moniker.

I definitely prefer a plain uniform to some of the dreck Nike has put out there in recent years, but this is just too plain, and wearing white socks with the all-white uniform is not a good look at all. I’m not sure the mono-burgundy or all-black uniforms are going to be an improvement either.

You had one job Commanders.

Your thoughts?


Some Great Uni Observations...

…from reader Ferdinand Cesarano.

Got a pair of e-mails over the weekend from Ferdinand. I’ll share them here:


We have all seen many pictures of the New York Giants’ jerseys in the 1950s, with lettering of black-on-orange.

But did the team perhaps have a simplified jersey for use in the spring? I recently encountered a shot of Monte Irvin in spring training of 1951 (we know it’s 1951 on account of the National League 75th anniversary sleeve patch, the same one seen on Mays’s jersey above).

On that jersey we see plain black lettering, with no orange outline.

Have you seen any pictures of this jersey before?

Ferdinand Cesarano

That’s a new one on me!

Ferdinand then sent a second mail later that day:


I found a travelogue from 1950 about Florida:

It must have been geared to people from Boston, because it includes visits to the spring training camps of the Braves at Bradenton and of the Red Sox at Sarasota. The most interesting thing to me is that it shows the Red Sox wearing their road uniforms at their spring training camp.

The segment on the Red Sox’ camp begins at 6:35.

It starts with some action from an exhibition game against the Yankees, in which both teams are wearing their road grey uniforms. We see Eddie Lopat pitching and Joe D. hitting for the Yanks. We then see Dom DiMaggio hitting for the Red Sox, and a brief glimpse of Yankee first baseman Joe Collins hitting, before we see Ted Williams coming up for the Red Sox. Then comes a shot of Collins driving in Joe D. with a hit, followed by a shot of Williams driving in Dom DiMaggio, and finally one of Red Sox backup second baseman Billy Goodman driving in two runs.

It then turns to a conversation between Johnny Pesky and Vern Stephens, in which they refuse to give their ages — a compunction not shared by Williams, who announces that he is 31.

At this point we see a jaunty interaction amongst three pitchers: Joe Dobson, Bob Gillespie, and Al Papai (pronounced “poppy”), in which they discuss their hitting skills, such as they are.

The Red Sox segment ends with some joshing between Dom DiMaggio and Joe Cronin (then serving as the Bosox’ GM) about their hair.

So I wonder whether you know about the Red Sox’ wearing of road uniforms during the spring, and if this was their usual practice back then.

Not to ignore the Braves, I will note that their segment, which comes earlier in the video, begins at 3:34.

The players shown are:

Outfielder Willard Marshall
Warren Spahn (playing pepper!)
Outfielder Tommy Holmes (who held the modern NL hitting streak record until Pete Rose broke it in 1978)
First baseman Earl Torgeson
Pitcher Dick Donovan
Pitcher Bob Hall (inexplicably called “the great Bob Hall”, despite his having had only one previous mediocre Major League season)

There is a nice conversation between catcher Paul Burris and a kid who is evidently from Milwaukee. The kid says that they will miss Burris in Milwaukee, where Burris had played the previous two seasons with the Milwaukee Brewers of the American Association, the Braves’ AAA affiliate. Burris says that, while he enjoyed his time in Milwaukee, the goal of every player is to get to the Majors. (Of course we know that the Boston Braves would wind up moving to Milwaukee three years later. Also notable is that the Braves’ AA affiliate starting that year and going through 1959 was Atlanta of the Southern Association.) Then Burris has a brief interchange with second baseman Roy Hartsfield, whom we’ll know better as the first manager of the Toronto Blue Jays.

Ferdinand Cesarano

Great stuff Ferdinand! Thanks for sharing!!!


Uni Tweet of the Day

Some better looks at the Canes new “Miami Nights” uni, especially the design on the sleeve cap:


And finally...

…that’s it for this Monday morning. As always, with the new UW format, be sure to check in during the day for any new news or breaking uni bits. There should be a couple additional postings today as well.

Here’s a link to today’s Ticker.

Everyone enjoy the new week and I’ll catch you later.



Comments (39)

    “There’s not much else about this uniform that screams “NFL Team” to me.”

    There’s also not much about the uniforms that screams “DC (military) Commanders” either. They’re just so… plain. I’m assuming the “military” part of the rebrand because, well, NFL/military/blah blah blah; but it feels very tacked-on. Truly, you could change the team name to just about any non-animal mascot and the unis would fit about as well. The very picture of a faceless corporate re-brand.
    Boring, boring, boring. I can’t imagine being a Washington fan and being excited about this (and I’m a Texans fan!)

    There is not much to like about this uniform set or franchise. The patch with 1932 bothers me too – it didn’t become WASHINGTON FOOTBALL until 1937. They were in Boston before then.

    Also, the number font on the white patch doesn’t even remotely match the style of the number on the white jersey.

    The Red Sox used to wear their road uniforms in spring training so that the home whites would stay pristine for opening day. They did that for years, ending in the seventies.

    COMMIES: woof.
    As a division rival, I never liked the franchise under any nickname. But I will give them credit, they had a great color scheme. The yellow/athletic gold pants were great and went with white or burgundy jerseys. I liked when they brought them back. But even the burgundy/white combo was solid in either direction. Monochrome never looked as good but whatever.
    These are change for change’s sake.
    1. The black trim is purely BFBS and accomplishes nothing, as the contrast between white and burgundy is sufficient.
    2. The gradient in the numbers is a superfluous gimmick. As is the bespoke font.
    3. The lack of athletic gold is criminal. It’s on the helmet but nowhere else, save The Swoosh.
    4. As Anthony said, nothing about this says “Washington football” or “military commanders”, which is alluded to by the wordmark.
    5. All white down to the socks is a very collegiate look not befitting a pro football team.
    6. The pants need something. Preferably, a team with history would go with straight striping but God only knows what Nike will talk them into. The asymmetric pants and sleeve stripes in the Era of the Verboten Name were a great look.
    Having seen them in action, not a fan. Could have been so much more. SIGH.

    Given what a sartorial mess every element of the Commies’ below-the-neck uniform set is, I think the all-white is pretty good. It draws the eye to the helmet, which is a very good helmet, rather than to any element of the terrible shirt or pants. That’s a virtue, and it’s pretty much the best that any Commies shirt/pants combo can hope to achieve. Even the white socks aren’t the worst – if you change to color, it’s 50/50 that they’d go with maroon, which would draw the eye down the body away from the helmet, which would be a downgrade. Yellow socks would pop nicely and keep the focus on the helmet, but this is not a team that makes good choices, so it’s probably best that they stuck with full-body mono.

    I offer this faint praise as someone who basically hates mono-white in gridiron football. But when a team’s uniform is as bad as the Commies, making that uniform nigh-invisible is a good outcome.

    It is almost as if the white uniform doesn’t match the helmet. Who designs this garbage?
    Could have outsourced this to fans and found a thousand better designs.

    So am I the only one that notices the inconsistency with the numbers? The white uni has that weird gradient, while the other two have the military style numbers. Also, the sleeve caps on each of the three unis is totally different. It’s like they designed three completely different uniforms, none of which is particularly great.

    They’ll be stuck with this design for a couple of years I’m assuming. The white uni coulda used the same template as the burgundy and they woulda had a semi solid look with lots of bungundy and gold on it. Instead, they Snydered-up the whole thing.

    GOLD socks would actually work better with this white uni.

    That’s one of my biggest gripes (along with many others) with the Commies new set. There isn’t a single feature that flows from one to the other. If you looked at the white uniform vs the burgandy uniform, the only thing that tells you it’s the same team is the helmet. No matching fonts, striping or anything. It’s an absolute disaster of a uniform set. Makes the Titans look good.

    As another comment said, use the old set and put the new W on the helmet. You keep the franchise traditional uniform without really making it look out of place.

    5 years can’t come soon enough for them to change these.

    Every one of these sets has a glaring difference not seen with the other 2. Gradient numbers, presence of black, presence of gold, striping on the sleeve caps.

    Commies are a disaster from top to bottom. Horrible owner. Lousy stadium. Blah name. Boring, uninspired uniforms. Clearly Nike can’t be bothered to create anything decent (must be too busy churning out garish 90s NBA reissues). Time to hit the reset button on everything.

    Sadly, the blame for this rests with Washington themselves. Tanya Snyder was HEAVILY involved in the design of all three sets.

    Like them or not, Nike’s designs have at least had a clear theme. The Commanders’ new sets have no such theme and are left looking very amateurish as a result.

    Not much to add that hasn’t been said already regarding these jerseys but I want to double down on your take. The disjointed mixy-matchy nature of this is the worst offense to me. Yes every element of every one of the commies unis is bad in its own way but the worst thing is that none of the sets have a clear design language, theme, or through line, and that includes the use of color. What on earth were they thinking? And to have such a simple look previously, and wanting a “classic, simple, military” look now but only complicating it with too much I don’t know… junk? Like use a stencil font or don’t. Don’t use a hybrid dynamic font/brutalist stencil font. Also the addition of black and the down playing of gold and the new checkered gradient make it look very automotive themed.

    New Site Suggestion: Rather than a menu option for “Posts” with sub menus for “all posts” and “tickers”, please consider separate options for “Ledes” and “Tickers”, which would reduce the number of clicks to access each. Since there’s only two options, it would not add any clutter. If there was more than two options, I could see it combined. Thanks.

    Change every stitch of black on the jersey to gold and it would be bearable, but this is hard to look at. The helmet is surprisingly great though.

    Yes! The helmet is very good!
    So good, in fact, that maybe Washington should have used it as the base and template for the rest of the uniform!
    The white uni here just has no consistency with the helmet. It looks like the pro bowl where players wear their own helmets but the generic conference uniform.

    I don’t think the lack of yellow on the jersey EXCEPT for the maker’s mark is a coincidence. Likewise for the Bengals white tiger set where ONLY the maker’s mark is orange.
    Uni makers doing uni maker things to draw attention to their mark.

    UGH, Commies unis look just as bad on the field as we expected. For me, the worst parts are that there’s no yellow (yes, it’s yellow folks) on the jersey or pants other than the swoosh, but worse, the stupid gradient crap makes the red on the uniform look like a completely different shade than the helmet. I think someone mentioned it when these were introduced, but it’s like the helmet and jersey/pants are for different teams. So silly. And, how about some socks with stripes or at least some color folks?

    I actually sort of like the all white pants (although I’d prefer yellow) and don’t have as much of an issue with the lack of stripes. I know that’s more of a college look, but I’ve never minded it. So, for me the biggest issue is that damn jersey.

    Still love the Miami unis. This is my first real look at what the grey is on the sleeves and my first thought was “that’s so dumb that it’s cool and I love it!” Sorry. I like these. Though I can definitely see the other side of the argument.

    What do uniform designers have against stripes on pants?

    For football, if each uniform element (pants, jersey, and helmet) does not include all the team colors then the uniform is a miss.

    That’s a great question. I don’t understand why stripes are either no more or made in to some weird design. The Titans have that horrible “dagger” that just looks ridiculous. The Falcons have a stripe but it’s hard to call it that. Jags have nothing.

    Not to sound like an old timer (I’m 41) but back in my playing days, practice pants were plain and your game pants had the stripes. It felt special to put your game pants on because they were different.

    The whole game was garbage from a uni standpoint.

    Commanders’ new lids look fairly sharp, but the only white is the chinstraps … which mean, IMO, they clash with the Stormtrooper-from-the-neck-down look. The numbers are a gradient mess, and there’s next to no gold/yellow on the uni itself (except for the maker’s mark). Bad (or is that great?) example of trying to go for sleek/clean/classic and ended up with plain.

    The Panthers were a mess, too. Smurf jerseys – black is much better, but in their defense, a little warm until October or sometimes November – and given the silver/electric blue/silver, why black socks? No blue socks – blue-topped socks or solid blue … either would have been an improvement. Just a mess on their end, too. Baker Mayfield had the comically small TV numbers on his jersey … but with the larger TV numbers on some of his teammates, it makes me wonder if they just recycled some of last year’s jerseys – with the small TV numbers – and maybe this year’s jerseys have TV numbers that don’t require a magnifying glass? One can hope.

    Bad uni game. Thank goodness they’re only exhibitions (you can call them that other word … but then you’re playing right into the league’s hands and cash registers).

    The Redskins looked marvelous for years. The burgundy pants/white jersey was perfect.

    All they had to do was change the helmet and resurrect the pants/jersey combination. Instead, they gave us this superfluous mess.

    Right on! I’ve always consider the Redskins uniforms to be one of the classic all-time looks, especially with the gold pants. They could have literally changed the name, changed the helmet, and left everything else as-is.

    I’ve loved the RedSkins since 1953 ..I’m not going say the uniforms are bad as I feel that the our management has done the best they could possibly do. I believe we will have some great wins this season and the uniforms are my least concern. Keep up the great Management!

    honestly they looked much better on the field than i thought they would based on the prior reveals. burgundy pants with a single gold stripe would be a big improvement.

    Absolutely no problem with plain white socks and pants. But that black stripe on the sleeve sticks out like a sore thumb.

    To pile on the criticism of these Washington uniforms, that horrible little circular thing above the NOB throws everything off. *Anywhere* but there would look better.

    There was nothing wrong with the WFT look or name, a shame that they downgraded after already figuring it out

    I know that websites don’t have full control over what ads are displayed on their site and most are placed based on key words, so no knock on UniWatch here. I am getting an ad all over this article from a shirt company selling “vintage” design shirts with racist caricatures of Native Americans. Clearly this algorithm does not know the audience of this site.

    The Panthers-Commanders game really looked great. Carolina came out in its own most unique color, and despite my apprehensions once Washington got on the field they didn’t look bad at all.

    Supposedly, Washington’s color are burgundy and gold. I’d like to see a LOT MORE of those colors on the uniforms. I actually hate the all white and all black uniforms and I have been a Washington fan for over 50 years. Let me say that again, I HATE the look of the all white and all black uniforms.

    All white and all black uniforms with a monochrome set in one team color to mix it up every now and then is what basketball and football will eventually turn into. The players like it, so the coaches like it. Most fans do not mind and buy it and Nike laughs all the way to the bank. Washington will be a trailblazer, just like the Cavs and the Jazz are in the NBA. We will have to get used to it. But I never will.

    I didn’t see much, if anything, regarding the Cowboys/Broncos color-on-color preseason game. The TV announcers seemed to think Dallas brought the wrong jerseys. Anyone have any info if this was planned or a mistake. In any case, not a bad look.

    I was exploring the new Madden and saw the Commanders have a pair of alternate Gold pants. They Look good with the Burgundy jersey but still missing the striping.

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