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Uni Watch Founder Featured in New ‘NFL Explained’ Episode

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Remember when I went to the NFL offices back in January? As I mentioned at the time, I was being interviewed for a uni-centric media project that the league was working on, which has now finally come to fruition: It’s the latest episode of NFL Explained, which is all about jerseys. It runs slightly over an hour and is full of really interesting info and commentary from league officials, a Pro Football Hall of Fame historian, Nike personnel, equipment managers … and me!

I’m frankly surprised by how much of my commentary they ended up using. I’m one of about six talking heads who appear periodically throughout the film. I appear in the very first minute, and there’s even a little segment about how I created Uni Watch at the 57:59 mark.

Full disclosure: At one point, during a discussion about uni numbers, I mistakenly refer to Giants defensive lineman Kayvon Thibodeaux as Justin Thibodeaux. Not sure how I made that mistake (or why they left it in). But aside from that, I’m pretty happy with my role here. E and I watched it last night and she said she was proud of how professional I sounded, although she’s obviously a bit biased.

The film itself is very good, with lots of info about NFL uni history, equipment management, the league’s uni rules, uni numbers, fabrics, and more. There’s historical footage, fun animations, and lots of very good editing that’s fast-paced but doesn’t feel gimmicky. It’s not perfect — one section that’s basically a stroke job for Nike goes on too long, and there are a couple of glaring omissions (how you can mention that the first Color Rush game was the Bills/Jets game in 2015 without also acknowledging that it was a disaster for colorblind fans?) — but overall it’s a very solid and engaging look at NFL jerseys.

Unfortunately, as is the case with lots of NFL content on YouTube, I’m unable to embed the video here. But you can watch the whole thing on YouTube. Recommended!



Substack Reminder

In case you missed it yesterday: For this week’s Uni Watch Premium article over on Substack, I have an in-depth and faaascinating interview with someone who works at one of the agencies that match teams with ad-patch brands. Even if you’re opposed to uni ads (as I am, obviously), I think you’ll be interested in this one, which is full of behind-the-scenes info. I learned a lot in the course of the interview, and I’m pretty sure you will too.

You can read the first part of the article here. In order to read the entire thing, you’ll need to become a paid subscriber to my Substack (which will also give you full access to my Substack archives).

My thanks, as always, for your consideration.



Your Daily(ish) Dose of Kitten

Uni Watch girl mascot Biscuit and boy mascot Waffles have figured out that this white shelf (a) gets warm because it’s over the radiator and (b) is right below the bird feeder. A win-win! (Or a meow-meow, if you prefer.)

I’m going out of town for the next four days. Gonna miss them so much! Also mildly concerned about how much destruction they’ll wreak in my absence. (A neighbor will be stopping in to feed them, and I’m sure they’ll be on their best behavior for him. But when left by themselves….)



Can of the Day

If there’s one thing I like, it’s a product that won’t explode.

Comments (32)

    Looking forward to watching this. I’m really curious if this addresses the players becoming more creative with their uniform decisions, or to be more accurate their uniform violations.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if they mention players getting more individualistic, but I’d be STUNNED if they mention that the NFL has only just gotten worn into submission and stopped fining them as much for it.

    I watched the first few minutes and I had the opposite reaction to seeing a radio host for the first time. “Oh that’s what he sounds like!”

    I’ve obviously seen Paul many times in pictures here on Uni-Watch but I’ve never heard him talk before.

    I was coming here to say the same thing.

    Paul, when reading your work, I’ve always heard your voice in my head as much more of a tenor range but clearly you skew more to the baritone/bass end of things.

    Watching it now!

    (Also, an edit: “I appear in the very first minute, and at there’s a little segment about Uni Watch at the 57:59 mark.”)

    Psyched to watch this!

    Hope Chris Christie doesn’t notice the mistake and tell PL to “Get A Life!”

    E is right – you should be proud of your presentation, Paul! Haven’t finished watching it, but so far you present as professionally as one of the veteran college lecturers in a Ken Burns documentary. Feels like you have decades of practice with the format, and total command of your material.

    Just got done watching it, Paul you did great in it, very professional, and the stuff you said was very great. As for the whole video, it was a good watch, just some parts I thought was a bit too much rah rah for Nike (and discounting anything the previous companies did, only mentioning Reebok shortly) I would love the other league’s doing this.

    Done watching!

    I think the “chassis” count was relatively low LOL

    Well done, Paul. You have an amazing talent for being extremely opinionated without losing the ability to be diplomatic and understanding. I am hoping that this film brings many new viewers/subscribers your way :-)

    Thanks again, Marcus!

    I noticed only one use of “chassis,” thankfully. (But waaaaaay too many instances of “story” and “storytelling.”)

    Paul, did they dictate your outfit? I would have thought you’d wear some green. Give us a behind-the-scenes scoop.

    Trying to remember. I may have asked about green, because I know that can cause problems with a green screen, but I honestly don’t recall.

    Paul, I have never met you so I was surprised when hearing you speak that I didn’t detect any “New York” in your voice. You could have a future in voiceovers or radio ads.

    I watched this earlier and it was a well done episode and provided some great info on the evolution of the jersey. I did fast through some of the Nike centric marketing info but your segments were spot on. I see a couple of people here have inquired if you’ve done voice overs. You have a great set of pipes so I can understand that! Oh yeah, that Energine may not “explode” but with a flash point of 26 F, it is highly flammable. Good thing it’s empty!

    Thanks, Don. Not sure my voice is professional-grade, but glad to know people seem to enjoy hearing it (or at least don’t find it off-putting!).

    Thanks for letting us know the video was up, Paul. Really enjoyed watching it and was glad to see the platform you were given in it. It’s amazing how much my awareness of the minutiae of uniforms has increased after being part of the UW community for several years now. It makes watching a documentary like this even more fun!

    Loved the whole video, and especially loved Paul’s take on things. I’ve always been hesitant about buying a jersey, but I kinda want a Bills one now! As a graphic designer, I loved seeing all the behind the scenes that goes into the process. From my time in advertising I can appreciate the amount of work that goes in to a project long before the public sees it. Great job!

    I can see what people were saying about the prominence of Nike in this but so far this has been a great video. The portion with the Chargers equipment staff describing the four jersey styles and the modifications (the giant Velcro used on the center’s jersey to keep it locked down) was a treat to watch.

    Good documentary if indeed a bit heavy on the Nike promo side. Your contribution is great, Paul, and I commend the league for asking you.

    I very rarely comment on posts but I feel I need to here.

    It was AWESOME! Paul, you were excellent and I mirror all the other comments from people saying how good it was to put a voice to the man, myth and legend!


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