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Monday Morning Uni Watch

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Good morning! Greetings from Uni Watch HQ, where I’m back after spending the past few days enjoying a much-needed getaway with friends in Virginia. Had a great time, but it’s good to be back.

Now then: Interesting move yesterday by Commanders coach Ron Rivera, who, as you can see in the photo above, had a little yellow splotch on one side of his polo collar. What was it? Let’s take a closer look:

The little “DR” patch is for Rivera’s mother, Dolores Rivera, who died last Monday. Interesting that he wore a patch instead of just a ribbon or something like that, and that he put the patch on his polo collar instead of on his sleeve or chest.

In that same game, Rivera’s club wore their mono-black alternates:

In other news from around the league yesterday:

  • In an absolutely brutal-looking game, the Jets once again went white over black and the Bills once again went mono-blue (lots of additional photos here):
  • In the battle of the cats — Panthers vs. Bengals — the teams went mono-white vs. mono-black:
  • Speaking of mono-white vs. mono-black, check out the Chargers and Falcons:
  • Disappointing spectacle in New England, where the Pats, after finally reviving their grey pants two weeks ago, went back to mono-navy:
  • In that same game, each Pats player wore a rear-helmet decal with the initials of a fallen military service member (additional info here):
  • The Jags went mono-turquoise:
  • In that same game, I’m surprised that the Raiders didn’t have any uni-borne memorial (at least not that I’m aware of) for Hall of Famer Ray Guy, who died on Thursday.
  • The Seahawks wore their grey alternates (something they apparently love doing when playing in Arizona):
  • The Rams paired their blue jerseys with their dishwater pants. This isn’t a new combo for them (they wore it four times last season and three times the year before that), but it seems more uni-notable now that dishwater has been relegated to alternate status this season:
  • Here’s something pretty wild: The Dolphins’ roster already included wide receiver Cedrick Wilson Jr., and then last Tuesday they traded for running back Jeff Wilson Jr. — so yesterday they had two players with “Wilson Jr” as their NOB. I’m not sure if having two same-JrOB’d players is an NFL first, but it’s certainly interesting:
  • Here’s something that’s been going on all season long, but I didn’t notice it until looking through some photos last night: During pregame activities, many Kansas City players wear red hoodies with their surnames printed on the left sleeve, along with a Nike maker’s mark. But quarterback Patrick Mahomes has his surname printed on the upper-left chest of his hoodie, while his sleeve has “Fifteen” (his uni number, spelled out) and “QB,” but no maker’s mark. As far as I can tell he’s the only KC player with this arrangement. Here’s a gallery showing how the hoodies look for five different KC players, followed by two shots of Mahomes:
  • Update: A KC equipment guy just got in touch to let me know the following: “Patrick has the sleeves cut off his hoodie, so his name goes on his chest instead of the sleeve. Also, each player has a long sleeve shirt with their number written out and their position, both on the left chest. Since Patrick never wears that shirt on it’s own, the number and position were moved to the sleeve where it can be seen.”
  • Packers tight end Marcedes Lewis was wearing what looked a lot like cleated Chuck Taylors, although I doubt that’s what they actually were:
  • As you can see in several of the photos in this post, G.I. Joevember is in full swing, with many teams wearing camouflage accessories yesterday.
  • Two teams wore white at home: the aforementioned Jets and the Bucs.

As for tonight: The Ravens and Saints will be wearing a lot of black.

(My thanks to John Turney, Jonathan Safron, and our own Jamie Rathjen and Phil Hecken for their contributions.)


What Paul Did Last Night for the Past Few Days

The photo shown above was taken by my friend Carrie as we took the ferry from Cape May, N.J., to Lewes, Del., on Thursday afternoon. After docking at Lewes, we drove two more hours to her dad’s place on Virginia’s eastern shore, where we spent the next few days. I didn’t take many photos, but highlights of our visit included some very special people, two gorgeous beaches, an endless supply of very good food (including some mind-blowingly good chocolate chip cookies), and what might be the World’s Most Wonderful Dog.

One thing I did photograph was a spectacular soft-shell crab sandwich platter that I got at a local eatery. The sandwich was excellent, the fries were very good, and the hush puppies were probably the best I’ve ever had:

On the way home yesterday, Carrie and I stopped for lunch at a favorite spot of mine — Jay’s Elbow Room in southern New Jersey, just outside of Philadelphia. I’ve probably run photos of it on Uni Watch before, but once more won’t hurt:

It wasn’t a full-blown vacation (I still haven’t had one of those since the summer of 2019), but it was definitely a good little escape. Hope your last few days were as much fun as mine! — Paul

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    Speculation on the Pats pregame broadcast was that they went mono-blue due to superstition, since they lost to the Bears wearing the grey pants a couple of weeks ago. Still an atrocious look.

    Love riding the ferry. Paul, if you ever get a chance I recommend just taking your bikes on, can spend a whole day/weekend cruising around the state park on the Delaware side and in Rehoboth/Lewes.
    You had a great weekend for a the trip, that is for certain.

    Mahomes’ hoodie is most likely different because he’s an Adidas athlete, so instead of having tape or other nonsense, Nike prolly went ahead and made a custom one with the makers mark

    Really disappointing that the Saints keep wearing all black at home after finally wearing black over gold pants last year near the end of the season and wearing that combo at home for preaseason. Also disappointing the Seahawks didn’t work in wearing their grey pants at home more after wearing them for the first time last year.

    The whole dark colored mono-unitard look has gotten out of control in the NFL. When it first started happening it was kind of cool because before then NFL teams rarely ever changed up their home or road uniforms. But now it’s just ridiculous and too many teams do it and made it their default look. The Bills choosing to go mono-blue so much this year is really surprising.

    Patrick Mahomes has a deal with Adidas … unveils shoes for the company.

    link

    Not sure it’s unusual for those not on the Nike roster to find apparel with the maker’s mark on the sleeve, then conveniently have the sleeves cut off so as not to run afoul of wearing league-mandated gear without upsetting their personal shoe/apparel provider.

    My God, am I tired of the suffix thing.

    First off, you’re not “Wilson, Jr.” You’re Cedrick, Jr. and Jeff, Jr.

    Second, unless your dad is on the team as well, there is no need to differentiate. (Griffey Rule.)

    NOBs exist to aid in player identification, not for you to grandstand. As Billy said in Purple Rain, “The stage is no place for your personal sh**, man.”

    unless your dad is on the team as well, there is no need to differentiate. (Griffey Rule.)

    Actually, the Griffeys didn’t add the suffixes even when they *were* on the same team. link

    Hard disagree.

    If the player says his name is Smith Jr. or Guererro Jr., then that’s his name.

    If he says its Smith or Guererro, then that’s his name.

    If he says is name is Ibáñez, then his name is Ibáñez, not Ibanez

    Nobody cares what you or I thinks his name ACTUALLY is. He has a name, use it. The respectful thing to do is not to tell someone else what their name is. If you see him in the street, are you going to say “actually, your name is Smith”.

    Call it the “Ellis Island Rule”

    No, it is a question of English grammar

    link

    It is incorrect to print the person’s name as “Smith Jr.” But the equipment manager is not going to look at the grammar textbook; he’ll avoid the aggravation and do what the player wants.

    I think you’re both right: On the one hand, I agree with Mike that people can call themselves whatever they like, and we should respect their choices. So if John Doe wants to call himself Doe Sr., even if he doesn’t have a kid, that’s fine with me. On the other hand, however, NOBs are not the place for nicknames or freestyling — there is a simple protocol, and the protocol is that we put the players’s surname on the back of the jersey, period. Surnames do not include generational suffixes.

    So if Rod Smart has a son that plays football in the XFL 9.0, does he become He Hate Me Jr. or He Hate Me II or He Hate Me Also or He Also Hate Me?

    I just want to shout out those Chuck Taylor cleats. Whoever had that idea is probably pretty proud of themselves, and I just want to tell them: you should be! That’s a brilliant idea, executed well.

    During the Patriots game, Belichick looked as if he was wearing a campaign button on his sweatshirt. Anyone know what that was all about? I couldn’t get a good view of it.

    If was for that same military-related program that had the players wearing the memorial decals. See the article I linked to for more details.

    Am I the only one who thinks that mono-ANYTHING just does not work in football? White, black, colors…Football uniforms look like crap when there is no contrast…

    Been on this train for years. Can accept mono-white in some circumstance (Texas roads), but really hoping this mono trend is on its way out.

    I think all white looks fine, though it works better with a white helmet. And I don’t mind mono-dark uniforms occassionally but I hate that teams make it their default. That’s too much. Every team that wears mono-dark uniforms it’s their worst dark jersey look.

    I’m a Tennessee Vols fan and I like the all orange a few times a year but no way I’d ever want it to be their default uniform, like Clemson has apparently made it. I like the Vols all white but their road white over orange pants is the superior away look.

    I’m pretty sure Clemson doesn’t ever break out the orange pants until they’re playing for a title/championship of some kind (Natty/ACC).

    It wasn’t always that way, but since Dabo took over, they’ve only busted out the orange britches when a championship was on the line.

    Weird, I guess that shows how much I don’t watch them in the regular season. You’re right, I went back and looked at their last 2-3 seasons worth of regular season games and it’s usually orange over white. I guess I assumed because I usually watch them in a championship game that all orange is their default.

    Mono anything looks bad to me, with the exception of mono white when the team’s helmet is white. Otherwise, the dark pants provide some contrast. The Bills with the white helmet and blue/blue just look silly.

    I think it looks great, but the key is to have the socks be a different color. The Bengals socks yesterday for instance were orange, which went well with the orange helmets.

    Jay’s Elbow Room!! Haven’t been inside in years but drive by it almost everyday.

    Glad Paul had a nice long weekend, but Jay’s…for (non-liquid) lunch?
    With The Jug Handle in close proximity?

    Hot take: Players look faster wearing monocolored unis. It’s a sleeker look.

    Kinda like how players look faster wearing white cleats instead of black, or a speedy number like 11 or 23, and not 46 or 83.

    In other words: the superhero-costume effect, which is what I’ve been saying for years.

    I agree about the visual effect, but I don’t care for it. I’d rather have the football players look like football players, not like superheroes.

    Actually, 23 and 83 are medium-speed numbers. Well, according to this guy.
    link

    But yeah, 11 is fast and 46 is slow.

    I appreciate this article. Not sure how I missed the initial publication of it?
    I have long felt there is an association with numbers & speed, though I disagree slightly with some of your reasoning. To me it is not the shape of the number or digits within it, the speed of the number has generally been based on the visual size of the player. I know this line of thinking was for sure colored by my involvement in youth & HS sports. Lower #s were on the smaller sized uniforms. The smaller the uniform the lower the # therefore the “little speedy guys” usually had the low numbers.
    Also, in basketball with the 0-5 number restrictions guards always had low #s in the teens or twenties. forwards in the 30 or 40s and the real big guys were in XL shirts with #s in the 50s. The similar number by position held true for football as well (except the receivers in the 80s messed this up). I am still not a fan of the recent changes to the NFL # rules. I cannot wrap my traditional head around the single digit linebackers. But at the same time, I can’t deny they do look much faster

    You know what looks even better than mono-crap? Mono-crap with a contrasting underlayer (in this case, white) that sticks out below the jersey. **chef’s kiss** [/s]

    Lots of NC2A energy with that Commies look. Overall a particularly bad-looking week in the NFL, with Packers/Lions being a notable exception. It doesn’t help that one of the few non-mono team – the Rams – are one of the sloppiest-dressed teams in the league.

    Agreed. I was referring to the fact that the Rams seem to always have a lot of guys their shirts untucked, and it looks sloppy. Reference the photo included with this story. It’s a decent look that is undone by the way they dress.

    At my job, I hang out plenty of chino trousers of that color, so to me it’s just a flavor of khaki.

    In an era of multiple helmets, the Panthers and Bengals did not go mono. They went silver/white/white vs orange/black/black.
    And they looked good!
    The Chargers and Falcons did go mono white vs black.
    And I didn’t like that one bit. In fact, I thought the Falcons looked worse than the Commanders.

    I guess I can *sort* of roll with the times, because I enjoyed the look of the Bills/Jets game.
    I wouldn’t mind at all if Buffalo made this their regular look. And as long as the Jets keep the black below the waist, have at it.

    Also, while Minnesota doesn’t need purple pants, and the Commanders didn’t need this uniform, neither was a deal breaker for me as a viewer. Just add some pants stripes to those black pants….you’re not the Ravens.

    I’d counter that full mono actually looks better (but not good) than non-white matching jersey/pants with a different color helmet. Even worse when they go solid socks that match the pants.
    When going mono jersey/pants, having a different color helmet just makes it look like a mismatched set. Full mono (Seahawks, etc) isn’t a good look, but at least there is visual consistency to it, having the different color helmet in there just looks like they couldn’t complete the mono set and had to settle for whatever helmet they had sitting around.
    Seahawks full mono navy > Patriots silver helmet navy mono.
    But I guess it is splitting hairs because it is all bad, aside from white helmet teams going mono white.

    I’m really not a fan of the Commanders black uniforms…their color set is just fine, no need for BFBS. That wasn’t the thing I dislike most about that game, though. I hated the black end zone with “Commanders” in camo.

    So much monochrome and leotards this week. At least the Chargers wore colored socks. The Chargers should only have one pair of pants, and they should be yellow/athletic gold. It pairs with the white jerseys, the Fouts Era royal jerseys, the powder blues and the navy blues. You could say the same for the Commanders but they’re such a mess – on the field, off the field and in the sartorial department – that the pants alone won’t fix them. The Steelers make this work and the Rams used to.
    Speaking of, the dishwater/bone just looks dirty. Not dirty like “I’ve been playing in mud and grass”; more dirty like “I need a better laundry detergent”. Their other colors are so vibrant and bright, an actual white would look so much better.
    Regarding surnames: I disagree with the generational suffixes. As was said elsewhere, it is not a forum to call attention to yourself. Whatever your legal last name is, THAT is what goes on the uniform. If you want to add diacritical marks for linguistic correctness, I am all for correctness. But it is chiefly an identifier. The Wilsons in Miami should be “C. Wilson” and “J. Wilson”, end of story. As someone with a generational suffix I never use, it is not my last name, and the person it distinguished me from passed away years ago, so it clarifies nothing.
    Jay’s Elbow Room?!?! That takes me back. Sounds like you drove through my neck of the woods to get there from Cape May…

    the dishwater/bone just looks dirty. Not dirty like “I’ve been playing in mud and grass”; more dirty like “I need a better laundry detergent”. Their other colors are so vibrant and bright, an actual white would look so much better.

    On the contrary, I prefer this to a bright white uniform. I’d like to see teams adopt dishwater jerseys and pants.
    The only way the Chargers would have looked worse than they did yesterday was in bright sunshine or on a snowy field. Even indoors, I couldn’t bear to watch this game. Mono black&white bores me.

    With dishwater jerseys, white helmets and trim would pop so much more. Same with the Seahawks. Yesterday’s uniform (which I hope becomes their standard road uni), made the neon trim around the numbers show up better.

    The ‘Hawks “wolf grey” pants could use just a hint of “action green” and they would look much better when paired with their jerseys of grey, white or blue.
    Blue-over-grey would be a great default home look if they’d just fix those pants.
    And while I generally prefer that a good number of teams go all-white (regardless of helmet color) when they play on the road, the Seahawks are not one of them…I can’t pinpoint why, but I know I don’t like that.

    Hey Paul,

    Glad to hear you took some time to decompress. As I watched some NFL yesterday, I noticed during warmups multiple players at different sites wearing some kind of chest strap and pulling their jersey up…something like this:
    link

    What is this about?

    I think that’s them just putting on their pads to warm up, but not pulling the jersey all the way down. Gets the feel without getting completely strapped in with such tight jerseys. The strap you see is just the bottom of the shoulder pads.

    Haven’t had a soft shell crab sandwich in years… Paul’s photo is making me want one! Looks like a great trip.

    Re: Hush Puppies – do you prefer straight corn meal (as I do) or do you like a touch of green/red pepper? Salted butter, please and thank you.

    The sandwich was excellent, the fries were very good, and the hush puppies were probably the best I’ve ever had:

    If you’re ever in the East Carolina press box, let me know how the hush puppies compare, because those are the best that I’ve eaten.

    Glad you had a good time, Paul. Welcome back!

    I get the UW Staff don’t like the American Flag/Camo accessory look, but as an Army Veteran, calling it “GI Joke” really doesn’t sit well with me. Maybe something like Camo-fail-auge?

    Just one guy’s opinion.

    It feels like this response kind of dodges the concern with an oft used term on this site. I’d personally rather no reply than a reply that discusses whether or not it was used today (if your preference is not to address it). I personally have never found it offensive since my opinion is that your intent has always been to respect the military by calling out the pandering that the leagues do

    I’ll be happy to address it if somebody brings it up when it’s topical. But it’s not topical today, and addressing a straw-man argument only invites and encourages more straw-man arguments.

    Let’s please move on. Thanks.

    In regards to the lack of a Ray Guy memorial on the Raiders uniforms, I remember hearing that the team did not return to Las Vegas after the Saints game. Instead they went to Florida in order to prevent having to go back and forth across the continent. I speculate that being away from their home equipment room may have prevented them from affixing a patch or decal. Hopefully they will have something for the upcoming game.

    Usually the Raiders don’t add decals/patches for former players, even if they are Raiders legends and Hall of Famers. The last former player for whom they had a memorial decal on the helmet was the great Gene Upshaw in 2008,but it all started with a leage initiative (all teams wore a patch for one game). They honored Marquis Cooper with a 95 helmet decal during the 2009 season because he died (lost at sea) when he was on the roster.
    Of course the team memorialized John Madden with a JM decal last season, but he wasn’t a player

    Forgot to mention this… The Raiders didn’t add a memorial decal for Hall of Famer Cliff Branch… And he was Mark Davis’ best friend

    Numerology…

    Christian McCaffrey traded from Carolina to SF. Takes #23 because Jeff Wilson, Jr. wears #22
    Jeff Wilson, Jr. traded from SF to Miami. Takes #23 because #22 is worn by DB Elijah Campbell.

    Wonder if McCaffrey takes 22 at some point with the 49ers? To me, #22 with the Dolphins will always be Mercury Morris…

    I feel like Im noticing a lot of black being worn not by one but both teams in play recently. Cards / Eagles did this a few weeks ago and now Bal vs NO.

    My goodness NFL you are charging €2000 ($2003 USD) for a ticket in Munich this weekend for an american football game? Eek.

    I must be the only one who likes the Pats blue on blue. Of course, I like most uniforms that have the same jersey/pant color (the Bengals looked GREAT with orange socks to match the helmets but all black otherwise). Also, the less grey in the Pats color scheme the better, since it shouldn’t be there in the first place.

    What is the deal with the white Sox they have been wearing in the NFL the last 3 seasons?? They look like crab the completely ruin the look of the uniforms best example being when the Tennessee titans where a white jersey with white pants and the white Sox, there is almost no blue left in the uniforms, they should be wearing their blue Sox with white jerseys and pants that way the blue Sox can play off of their blue helmets. There is only one exception in the NFL and that is when the Arizona Cardinals where their all white uniforms with white jerseys and white pants the white Sox actually look good vut that is it. Anyone know what exactly is the deal with the white Sox in the NFL?? AND Will this trend be ending anytime soon??

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