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Good Saturday Morning Uni Watchers. I hope everyone has had a pleasant week.
The Supe is tomorrow, and as I’ve done for a decade or so, I’m joined by Timmy Brulia, one of the head honchos over at the incredible Gridiron Uniform Database, and who will be bringing us the uniform histories of the two combatants in SB LVII (Supe 57). There’s a LOT to cover today, so let’s just delve right in, shall we? With Kansas City Chiefs the designated “road” team, we’ll cover their uni history today, with Philly tomorrow. Here’s Timmy:
• • • • •
Kansas City Uniform History By Timmy Brulia
1960: The Dallas Texans take the field as one of the eight original American Football League teams. The helmets are red with a white map of the state of Texas on the sides. with a very thin black outline and a yellow star where Dallas is located. The Texans sport white jerseys with red numbers trimmed in yellow on the front and back and tv numbers in the same fashion on the sleeves. The home jerseys are red with white numbers edged in yellow on front and back, with TV numbers in white on yellow on the sleeves. The pants are white with a very thin red/yellow/red stripe pattern on the sides. Socks are white with red/yellow/red stripes (worn with white jerseys) and red with white/yellow/white stripes (worn with red jerseys). Starting with the 11/18 game at Boston, the Texans add names on the backs (NOB) of their jerseys. Red names on the white jerseys and white NOBs on the red jerseys.
1963: With dismal attendance in Dallas, the Texans relocate to Kansas City and are renamed the Kansas City Chiefs. Out of necessity the team revises their helmets, keeping the same red color but changing the emblem from the Texas state outline to a white arrowhead, with the point facing forward and a red “KC” inside the arrowhead. The arrowhead and KC have thin black outlines. The rest of the uniform remains as is, with the pant stripes thickening ever so slightly.
1968: For the first tine, stripes are added to the sleeves. The white jerseys have a red/yellow/red combo on the sleeve edge, while the red jerseys feature a white/yellow/white pattern. Red pants are introduced to the mix with side stripes of white/very thin red/yellow/very thin red/white. White socks are reintroduced for the first time since 1961 to be worn with the white jersey/red and pants set and have the same red/yellow/red stripes as worn in ’61.
• • •
1969: The thin red separation of stripes on the red socks are deleted. The team wears special red jerseys for Super Bowl IV. NOBs are serifed and a special 10th season AFL patch is worn on the left shoulder for the game.
• • •
1971: KC joins in on the anti-black cleat craze. The team wears white cleats with the white jerseys and red cleats with the red jerseys.
1977: Socks stripe patterns are changed. For the white socks, stripes are thin red/yellow/thin red/yellow/thin red. On the red socks the stripes are thin yellow/white/thin yellow/white/thin yellow. White cleats are worn full-time.
• • •
1978: The socks revert back to the three stripe pattern, with the inner yellow stripe being a lot thicker than before on both sets.
• • •
1983: A memorial patch for deceased running back Joe Delaney was worn on the left breast of both jerseys for the season. The helmet logo shrinks a little more.
1992: A memorial patch for Director of Player Personnel Whitey Dovell is worn on the left breast of both jerseys.
• • •
1994:Two commemorative patches are worn on the jerseys. The league wide NFL 75th season patch is worn on the left breast and the team’s 35th season patch is worn on the right breast. As with all other NFL teams, KC wears throwback jerseys for a few games. These throwbacks are based on the 1963-1967 seasons, with stripeless sleeves and the old style red socks worn with both sets.
• • •
1999: KC’s 40th season is commemorated with a patch on the right breast of both jerseys.
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2000: To the delight of many, the red pants are revived, with the same stripe pattern as worn before, with the inner yellow stripe slimmed down.
2006: KC wears three uni combos this season, the normal red over white, as well as white over red and white over white.
• • •
2007: After the passing of AFL founder and team founder Lamar Hunt late in 2006, the team wears a permanent patch honoring Hunt. The patch is basically the old AFL insignia with LH on the football in the logo. The all-white combo worn for several games in 2006 is dropped.
2009: KC wears a 50th season patch on the right breast of both regular jerseys. The all-white combination is worn for the last two weeks of the season. As part of the 50th Anniversary of the founding of the American Football League, the team breaks out togs worn when they were the 1962 Dallas Texans, with a special AFL Anniversary patch for three games. The highlight was when the “Texans” in red at home played the Dallas Cowboys, who wore 1962 blue throwbacks of their own on 10/11.
• • •
2010: The red/white, white/red and white/white combos are again worn.
2012: There is a change – a subtle change – on the jerseys. The TV numbers bump up from the sleeves to the shoulders and the sleeve stripes, previously on the sleeve edge, are now off-set from the edge. A league-wide patch for the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s 50th Anniversary is worn on the right breast of the white jersey for Weeks 14 and 15. The same three uni combos are worn.
• • •
2013: The usual three combos are worn…PLUS the combo that almost no one thought would never be worn, the red over red! The all red look (with white striped socks) was worn for the first time on Week 2 against the Cowboys.
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2014: The all-whites take a breather. White/red, red/white and the all-reds (with red striped socks) make another showing, this time for Week 4 at home vs. the Patriots.
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2015: KC wears four combos this season: white/white/red socks, white/red/white, red/white/red and red/red/red.
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2016: Kansas City, noted for their rather conservative taste as other teams fell prey to the mix and match era of the 2010s, go full throttle with six uniform combinations this season. White jerseys are worn with white pants and white socks, white pants and red socks, red pants and white socks. Red jerseys are worn with white pants and red socks, red pants and red socks and for the Thursday night Color Rush against the Raiders for Week 14, red pants and red socks without the usual white sanitary socks.
• • •
2017: Four uni combos take the field: white/red/white, red/white/red, red/red/red (with white sannies), red/red/red (without sannies).
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2018: These were the four combos worn: white/red/white, white/white/red, red/white/red and red/red/red.
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2019: Three combos were worn: white/red/white, red/white/red and red/red/red. For Week 9 the team switched out their white face masks for gray. The team wore a Super Bowl Patch in SB LIV which ended the 2019 regular season.
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2020: The COVID-19 Pandemic forces cancellation of all pre-season games. The team appears in SB LV against Tampa Bay and wears a special patch.
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2021: All four color combos were worn (white/white, white/red, red/white, red/red). Gray facemasks were affixed to the helmets for Week 15. From Week 10 on, socks were more or less pick-and-choose between red or white colors.
• • •
2022: The red over red set was not worn. The SB LVII patch will be worn on the players’ right breast on the white jersey.
• • • • •
Thanks so much, Timmy! Fantastic job as always. Readers, please give Tim a tremendous round of applause for his research prowess and dogged determination to get all the details right for us!
In honor of the Supe this weekend I’m pleased to present two drawings from Anthony “Ant” Giaccone: one for KC and one for Philly.
Readers of a certain vintage will instantaneously be able to recognize the two players depicted above (even without the descriptions in the pictures): Len Dawson of KC (who unfortunately passed away this past August and whom the team has been memoralizing on their helmets), and Harold Carmichael of the Eagles (an absolute beast at 6’8″ at wide receiver).
Ant has sent me dozens of his wonderful drawings and I’ll be sharing them with the readership in the coming weeks. I think you guys are going to enjoy them very much.
Guess the Game from the Uniform
Based on the suggestion of long-time reader/contributor Jimmy Corcoran, we’ve introduced a new “game” on Uni Watch, which is similar to the popular “Guess the Game from the Scoreboard” (GTGFTS), only this one asked readers to identify the game based on the uniforms worn by teams.
Like GTGFTS, readers will be asked to guess the date, location and final score of the game from the clues provided in the photo. Sometimes the game should be somewhat easy to ascertain, while in other instances, it might be quite difficult. There will usually be a visual clue (something odd or unique to one or both of the uniforms) that will make a positive identification of one and only one game possible. Other times, there may be something significant about the game in question, like the last time a particular uniform was ever worn (one of Jimmy’s original suggestions). It’s up to YOU to figure out the game and date.
Today’s GTGFTU comes from James Bourne.
Good luck and please post your guess/answer in the comments below.
Uni Tweet of the Day
HOT TAKE: Those “wedding gown” whites were uni perfection…
Look at Vida Blue’s cleats, socks, and stirrups and explain to me where the fuck we went wrong as a society. pic.twitter.com/Dhci139DgA
…that’s all for today. BIG thanks, once again, to the inimitable Timmy Brulia for his outstanding uni history of Kansas City. He’ll be back tomorrow for the full uni history of Philadelphia, as we inch closer to Supe 57.
Everyone have a great Saturday and I’ll catch you back here tomorrow.
I’m going to guess the GTGFTU is Kansas City at Philadelphia 09/27/2009; Eagles 34, Chiefs 14.
Eagles don’t wear white shirts at home and that looks like Corelle Buckhalter. I’m going to say it would need to be 2005 in KC.
Great stuff today, Phil! Your comprehensive Super Bowl uniform history surveys ahead of the big game are among my favorite pieces on Uni Watch each year.
Thanks Kary, but the histories are all Timmy’s doing! (I do find the accompanying pics and such, but the history is all his).
D’oh! In my head, I typed “Timmy and Phil,” but my fingers apparently didn’t get the memo. Sorry for that ovesignt in my previous message, Timmy! Your work on this is amazing!
I love, love, LOVE Ant’s art! Want more – please post all you’ve got Phil!!
Thank you Paul! Much appreciated!
Man, how great would a Superbowl look if the Eagles were playing in those uniforms against the Chiefs.
Given the championship success now with the midnight green I don’t think they’ll go back to kelly green full time. BUT, bringing back silver pants and making silver more prominent in the wing on the helmet and number outline on the jerseys (rather than black which doesn’t contrast with dark green) would go a long way in improving midnight green uniforms.
I’d prefer KC in white over white and Philly in what’ll be wearing…but of course it comes down to the socks. Blacktop for the Birds, red/yellow/red stripers for the Chiefs – Super! The sannies are a scourge.
Silver pants would be huge. Putting the green back in midnight green would be good, but the Birds have been skewing toward teal lately.
The picture of Vida Blue demonstrates 1.) that pullovers and sansabelts were too soon abandoned, and 2.) Oakland has never really had a bad uniform. Remember, the Athletics were the winners of my Greatest Hits of the Pullover Era Contest.
Wish Philadelphia Eagles would go back to the uniform that Harold Carlmichael is wearing – am I alone in thinking they never should have abandoned that look???
The reason the Texans drew such low crowds was that the NFL put the Cowboys in Dallas as an expansion team that same year. Lamar Hunt was denied a Dallas NFL expansion franchise, after he was denied a purchase of the Chicago Cardinals who he wanted to move to Dallas.
Just think. The Dallas Cardinals….
“I want to move one of your teams to Dallas.”
“No, we don’t think that’s a profitable market.”
“So I will start my own league with a Dallas team.”
“So we will put another team in Dallas just to bankrupt you, because the purpose of a sports league is to dominate the business and dictate everything that happens in it, regardless of profits.”
And that’s why in American sports they’re called “franchises” and not “clubs.” In the European soccer-type club model (and US college football), no one has the power to operate such a strongarm racket. Which nation is the champion of the free market again?
The Cowboys didn’t draw well either until they started winning.
The Chiefs front (and possibly back) uniform numbers in the 1970s looked smallish compared to before and after.
I agree. It’s not just the yellow borders; the entire digit is smaller.