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Monday Morning Uni Watch: 2023, Week 17

A bit of NFL uni history was made yesterday, as the Panthers paired their white jerseys with their blue pants for the first time in team history. Lots of additional photos here, and here’s how it looked in action:

According to the Gridiron Uniform Database, the Panthers have worn blue pants four previous times (once apiece in 2015, 2016, 2017, and earlier this season), but only as part of their Color Rush combo. This was the first time the blue britches have been worn with a non-blue jersey. It’s not a terrible combo, but a silver-helmeted team going white over blue feels too Lions-y to me. Also, wearing this combo against the Jags created the visual effect of a spring scrimmage, because the two combos were basically inverted versions of each other. As our resident Panthers expert, Gabe Cornwall, said to me in an email yesterday, “For those who like the Panthers in this blue, do it against a team that doesn’t wear predominantly blue/teal/green.”

In other news from a fairly uni-uneventful day around the league yesterday:

  • The Bears and Falcons also wore uni combos that were essentially inverted versions of each other (although it didn’t bother me so much, maybe because we’re used to both of these combos):

  • In yet another instance of this phenomenon, the Bills and Pats also wore essentially inverted combos (again, didn’t bother me because we’re familiar with both looks; additional photos here):
  • In that same game, Patriots tight end Pharaoh Brown began the day wearing a long-sleeved undershirt. But after fumbling in the first quarter, he tore off his sleeves:
  • Fifty years after the Broncos and Chargers went orange/white vs. white/yellow, they wore those same combos again — but one of them nonetheless looked very different:
  • No home teams wore white.

(My thanks to Dave Hilbert and John Turney for their contributions to this report.)

Comments (36)

    I am a fan of the black over purple combo for the Ravens. Not a usual jersey/pant combo you see. Has that ominous feel which fits with the Ravens identity. Purple pants have stripes and they pair it with black socks so we get a proper looking football uniforms instead of the yoga pants look when Ravens go monoblack.

    I think it might look just a tad better if the center stripe on the pants was gold instead of white.

    The black over purple has grown on me. I hated it at first. It’s not perfect, but I think there’s something there if the Ravens decide to update their uni-set.

    The black over purple is a great uni combo for the Ravens. They need to rock it more often.

    Insert my frequent contention that the NFL should not have allowed an expansion with two feline-themed teams and similar color schemes. The Jags and Panthers still meld into a single entity in my mind all too often.

    That Carolina combo would have looked better against say, the Bears but it’s fun to see a uni-rarity. They have 12 different uni combos (I’m not counting helmets or socks) so they should mix it up once in a while. They have yet to wear black over blue but that could happen next week.

    Went to Panthers/Jags game. It was fine on the perimeter, but when the action would stay in the box and “low to the ground” it was a jumbled mess. Would like to see that combo against a Chiefs or Commies, some red being the contrast.

    Agree with earlier posters on Ravens, I like that look but not the white center stripe. Maybe two black shorties coming up from the knee so semi-match the helmet?

    Also, Broncos need a redesign but that game was freaking gorgeous.

    Ketchup and mustard would look better though – bring back the 2012 look with the new origami W helmet!

    I’m not a wine guy but I like the Commies’ full-bodied burgundy. It’s taken 2 seasons to acquire the ‘taste’…if they are sticking with the current branding, sticking with this is as cohesive option as they have-and it’s a nice looking one to boot.

    I think Washington’s original brownish burgundy was the best, because it was unique in sports. It worked with old gold.

    The first “I’d wear that” of 2024 goes to… the Panthers.
    Really liking that combo.

    As for white over blue feeling too Lions-y, I don’t get that feeling anymore, especially since Detroit has fallen in love with wearing Nittany Lions pants these days.

    Pats/Bills looked great as well. As long as New England contrasts their pants and jerseys, they have a look that rivals their Super Bowl XX era unis.

    Chargers/Broncos looked like they were wearing cheap knockoff versions of the 70s unis. Fantastic color combo, but it definitely isn’t the same.

    “The first “I’d wear that” of 2024 goes to… the Panthers.
    Really liking that combo.”

    Agreed. The reason it works so well is the white socks (which match up with the white jersey).

    I may be one of the few on here who doesn’t like the black in the Panthers uni scheme — yes, I get that most panthers are black, but we don’t complain about silver or blue lions not existing do we? And last I checked, Eagles aren’t green and silver.

    The team has a unique color in Process Blue. They need to emphasize it. How many other teams use black as a base color (or wear the dreaded BFBS)?

    When I did my 2/3/2/3 project, I envisioned the Panthers wearing very little black: link

    I’d add the Process Blue pants (so long as they don’t go mono-Process Blue below the neck) to that. It’s a fantastic color and should be worn more, not less!

    I LOVE Carolina Blue and white. It’s such a perfect look. I think when you add black to the mix, it looks too made for TV movie fake. Carolina Blue and white should be the main colors with black just being an accent color rather than the other way around.

    This is one instance where the all white socks looked great, especially if they player was wearing white cleats. Silver/White/Carolina Blue/White should be their primary away look. It just looked so nice. I didn’t get a Lions vibe at all as I associate the Lions with silver pants, even though they go blue.

    My only gripe is that I wish these teams would coordinate what they wear. This was the perfect game for the Jags to go mono black or black over white. When I saw the announcement for the blue pants, I said out loud, this will look great, as long as the Jags don’t go teal over white.

    That’s not Carolina Blue. It’s Process Blue that the Panthers wear. The colors aren’t that close, Process Blue is much brighter and more vibrant and Carolina Blue means something else entirely.

    Yeah, I thought I made that clear. Carolina Blue (as you note) is a completely different shade. It’s not even what the Panther wore before this year, when Nike was finally able to produce Process Blue: link

    What the team wore previously was more of a cyan blue: link

    Carolina blue is more akin to what we call powder blue, and is most famously worn by … Carolina: link

    “… yes, I get that most panthers are black, but we don’t complain about silver or blue lions not existing do we? And last I checked, Eagles aren’t green and silver.”
    So true! Sometimes terrible looks are justified by selectively applying natural world appearances to the uni-verse (I.e: there’s white tigers, so sure-let’s have the Bengals look like zebras!).
    Silver has a place for the Panthers…as just a sliver on the threads, and as for the helmet – add more silver by subtracting the stripes.

    Sometimes terrible looks are justified by selectively applying natural world appearances to the uni-verse (I.e: there’s white tigers, so sure-let’s have the Bengals look like zebras!).

    I have never been more in agreement with you than right now, Chris… and I may never again, so let’s savor this moment.


    While all of us are entitled to opinions, I can’t agree with this one.

    If the Panthers were to use the black lid as a primary sometime down the road, I could see black/black/blue/black or black/white/blue/black. But for the Panthers, it was in essence a whiteout save the pants. I understand their wanting to change things up and not be as predictable as they used to be, but some of the experiments have not worked.

    The blue jerseys/black pants combo is also crummy when combined with the silver helmet. No predominant/anchor color. Pick one as Austin emphasized below.

    Not a fan of the blue pants, in general, but two improvements would be to wear black socks with it – at least it would help pull the black numerals, neck band, pants stripes and such together and, as I told Paul, don’t do this against a team that wears green/teal/blue – brighter blues to be specific.

    Don’t wear blue or silver/gray pants with the white jerseys, the silver/grey issue – especially with Nike turning the silver into grey – is that it has little contrast. See also: Seahawks wearing white over grey. Either white over navy or white over white.

    Great points Gabe, and we’ll agree to disagree.

    There are just SO MANY teams in the NFL who wear black, either as primary or as an alt/CR (Arizona, Baltimore, Atlanta, Cincinnati, Jacksonville, New Orleans, Vegas, Philadelphia, Jersey B, Pittsburgh, Washington) but there are exactly ZERO who wear Process Blue. And it’s a GREAT color. I think they should ditch as much black as possible and highlight (as it were) the PB, if *only* to stand out with a unique shade of blue — as opposed to joining the other eleven teams who wear black either as a primary or an alt.

    And, while currently NOT an option, I’d actually love it if the team ditched the white jersey and pants for silver (as their “light” jersey), wearing the Process Blue and silver in various combinations. Maybe keep the black for a CR or alt, since the fans seem to like it … but in a league where a third of the teams wear black, I’d rather they stand out in Process Blue/silver than wear something shared by 11 other squads.


    I want to like the Panthers in white over blue, but there’s just nothing UNIFORM about this uniform. Silver helmet, white jersey with black numbers, blue pants, white socks and shoes? Just kind of a jumbled mess. I really wish they would wear silver pants with the white jersey so that the helmet and pants would match. They’ve only ever done it once in their history and if they did it again, I think it might be their best look (especially if they pair them with black socks).

    Silver helmet, white jersey with black numbers, blue pants, white socks and shoes? Just kind of a jumbled mess.

    You say that as if it’s a bad thing…
    Reminds me of Ole Miss in their proper road uni: navy helmet with red stripe, white jersey with red stripes and gray pants with red and blue stripes.

    Many times over the years the Chargers have worn white helmets with powder blue jerseys and bright yellow pants at home. They are the only team in the world that could make that work, and I can’t understand how.

    Longtime reader, first time commenter here. Hey Paul, do you think one of these days you could make an article highlighting the NFL’s sock crisis? I know you’ve touched on it before but at this point I think the fiasco deserves its own article. I think ever since Color Rush began, teams try to go with the mono/“iced out” look as much as possible. It’s a real shame because each team used to have their own individual socks. Now everybody just wears the all white and it makes it look very amateur. Just curious your thoughts (or maybe you already have made an article and I’m unaware). Happy New Year!

    Agree with this sentiment. A very ugly weekend in the NFL made even uglier with the white sock/tight craze that has swept the NFL. :(

    Same, there’s something about the all white socks paired with “classic” uniforms like the Colts uniform and 49ers that makes the whole set look incomplete. Even when paired with some modern sets like the Broncos it just looks “off” to me.

    Same. I have zero issue with it in college football where there’s not really official team socks. But in the NFL it bugs me like crazy when every team is wearing all white socks now

    Minnesota started issuing blackout license playe options for cars and motorcycles. While looking though the over 100 types of custom plates, I noticed an option for a vertical motorcycle plate, but it’s limited to 4 characters instead of 6. I wonder if “BORT” is still available as a combination. link

    I know this will be covered tomorrow, but seeing the Sugar Bowl unis now, compared to the rest of the bowls today… I just want to rank these bowl games:

    5th: Sugar Bowl (Washington v. Texas)
    – The Huskies’ purple-over-purple, especially with that metallic gold helmet, is the worst uni combo of all 10 NYD bowl participants, and it doesn’t really fit against the Longhorns’ mono-white.
    4th: [Tampa Bay] Bowl (LSU v. Wisconsin)
    – Not terribly fond of the Tigers’ purple and gold unis and their blocky helmet letters, but they wore one of their better combos, and I have no complaints about the Badgers’ unis.
    3rd: Citrus Bowl (Tennessee v. Iowa)
    – The Vols and the Hawkeyes kept it simple and straightforward with their classic combos.
    2nd: Fiesta Bowl (Oregon v. Liberty)
    – The Donald Duck throwbacks looked beautiful, and the gold-Kelly-gold combo paired well with Liberty’s navy-white-navy.
    1st: Rose Bowl (Michigan v. Alabama)
    Two teams sticking with their iconic looks. The Wolverines could’ve easily gone mono-navy, and I’m grateful they didn’t.

    LSU versus Wisconsin. I was looking at the stripes on their helmets and I always assumed that each color stripe had the same width, e.g., red-white-red where the width of each red stripe is the same as that of the white stripe, which was the case for the Badgers. However, the the white center stripe purple-white-purple combo stripe on the Tigers’ helmet looks to be wider than each of the purple stripes, which doesn’t look as cool to me as the Badgers’ ones that were of equal width. Do they always stay constantly different for the teams that have different widths or do they sometimes make it so that they are the same width in some of the past years the teams have played?

    Ditto with the pros. Cowboys, Niners, Saints, etc. Equal width, different width, or just depends on which season? Thanks. (Or, for those teams that have equal widths, do they actually have different widths but only look like they have the same widths because we only see them from far away?)

    There is something so iconic about the Steelers unis using those yellow pants home and away to give a co-ordinated look, and I’ve always thought it could be embraced by other teams:

    Atlanta with the black helmets and red pants home and away would solve their black/red crisis.
    Baltimore in purple pants is a look that works home and away. They might not want to lean into the Steelers look, but I do like it!
    Jags could work with teal, but I think the teal is unique to them, so should be jersey.
    Panthers would look good with process blue pants home and away. Maybe Steeler it up with the black helemets – but similar feel achieved with silver.
    (or pewter/pewter/orange for the Bucs!)

    Given how many uni combos are now available, less likely for any team to embrace a change like this, but it was a fun week seeing Baltimore and Carolina’s choices and thinking how much needed contrast it would have given the Atlanta game!

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