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Monday Morning Uni Watch: Super Bowl LVIII Edition

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Well, that sucked. But congrats to KC and their fans. That’s quite a dynasty they’ve built.

From a uniform standpoint, it was a pretty uneventful game, but I did notice a few things, beginning with the back of KC quarterback Patrick Mahomes’s helmet, which still had the decal identifying him as a Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award nominee, even though the award had been given to Steelers defensive lineman Cameron Heyward three days earlier:

The decal basically says, “I’m in the running for this award.” Seems odd that he’d still be wearing it after the fact. I couldn’t find a rear-view photo of the Niners’ Payton nominee, Arik Armstead. Does anyone know if he was also wearing the Payton decal, and/or if other non-winning Payton nominees wore the decal in other Super Bowls?

Update: Reader/commenter Kevin Bock reports that Armstead was indeed wearing the Payton decal last night:

In another KC note, kicker Harrison Butker wore a captaincy patch, which is something you don’t often see on a placekicker:

Interestingly, this was not a first for Butker. He also wore the “C” in Super Bowls LV and LIV, but he did not wear it last year in Super Bowl LVII.

Speaking of Butker, I wish I’d noted in my Super Bowl Preview that he routinely wears two different shoe brands:

Turning to the 49ers, they really deserved to lose just on the basis of their hosiery, which seemed pretty evenly split between red and white:

What a mess. Offensive lineman Aaron Banks made things worse by going with leggings that didn’t fully cover his lower legs:

Granted, that’s not a new style for him, but come on — it’s the Super Bowl. Show a little more class.

Finally, in an interesting uni-related development, former NFL player Rob Gronkowski, who was attempting a field goal as part of an ad for a betting company, wore a memorial patch for actor Carl Weathers, who had previously appeared in ads for the same company:

And that’s a wrap for the 2023-24 NFL season. How many days until pitchers and catchers?


IMPORTANT Teespring Update

Big news on the merch front: Teespring has just announced an upgrade to its software, the main result of which is that product listings that originally launched with an earlier version of their software will expire at the end of February unless they’re taken down and then relaunched. This affects about 95% of the T-shirt listings I’ve amassed over the past nine years.

The 17-step (!) relaunch process is cumbersome and time-consuming even for just one product. The prospect of doing it hundreds of times is out of the question. So I’ve decided to let most of our Teespring product listings go dark at the end of this month.

Here’s what this means for you:

  • If you want anything in the Uni Watch Teespring shop, I strongly suggest you order it now. A few newer items, like the 25th-anniversary products, will still be available after this month, but most of the listings will sunset at the end of February.
  • Everything in the Naming Wrongs shop will go dark at the end of the month. So if you want any of those shirts, the time is now.
  • Likewise, everything in the Uni Rock shop will also vanish at the end of the month. So it’s now or never.

My thanks, as always, for considering our products.



APA Reminder

In case you missed it last Friday, Phil is now taking questions and suggestions about his upcoming gig running Uni Watch’s weekday operations. Full details here.



Can of the Day

This has to be one of the most bizarre package designs I’ve ever encountered. They’re basically saying, “This is the perfect paint for a canvas tarp — you know, like the one you use for covering your missile or rocket.”

• • • • •

Our latest raffle winner is Clint Wrede, who’s won himself a 25th-anniversary patch and last two Uni Watch magnets. Congrats to him, and big thanks to Chris Hickey for sponsoring this one. — Paul

Comments (41)

    Maybe I’m the only one, but watching the game last night reminded me of how much I prefer the 49ers 80s/90s era logo. The new one, with a gold outline inside the black outline, looks so bad on the helmet, especially because there outline is thicker on the outside than at the top and bottom. On the helmet, it looks like they intended to add just a black outline, and somehow didn’t line it up quite right.

    Simpler is usually better for helmet decals (Niners, Saints, Falcons) The rare exception is a cartoon that fans have taken to their hearts (Patriots, Buccaneers).

    I literally can’t see that kind of detail on the logos when watching the game. Perhaps because I have a low-def small screen TV?

    I fully agree. That outline has always bugged me.

    As long as I’m making enemies, it also bugs me that the pants are that weird mustard color instead of gold to match the helmet. And the grey face masks! Just a mess of a uniform, IMO.

    Wasn’t that a holdover from their last uni set before the current faux-classic set (more or less) came back in 2009? I always thought it was strange that they left the helmet logo alone, even though it was yet another aspect of the drop-shadowed 1996 nonsense that brought in all the NFL 50 changes that eventually ended up ruining their unis for a decade.

    I must be getting desensitized because the long whites on the 49ers didn’t bother me as much as the long red.

    Pitchers and catchers report this week!

    The KC kicker wears TruSox too? Very popular in soccer. Soccer players routinely wear Frankenstein-socks that are TruSox on the bottom (feet), and Nike/Adidas/whatever goes with the kit on the top (calves)

    I think the big brands like Nike and Adidas have caught on and now provide, at least for their “elite” teams, socks in the form of calf sleeves under the presumed caveat of “we made your uniform socks into sleeves but please wear our plain white socks underneath instead of Trusox”. Most of the Manchester United team wears their socks in the form of calf sleeves and just about everyone wears white Adidas socks underneath.

    I remember as I saw the Niners taking the field and seeing so many players go full white socks I thought they should not win just off of that alone. I’m getting used to it but it still doesn’t look good to my eyes!

    Hi Paul – I’ve looked at the Naming Wrongs T-shirts before and went back to day to confirm. I’m from Toronto and am interested in the ones for our local stadium. But they all say ‘I STILL CALL IT SKYDOME’. The name of the stadium was always ‘SkyDome’ to capitalize the ‘D’. Having it all caps is almost a naming wrong itself – $30 (CDN) for a shirt that complains about corporately changing the name but getting the name wrong strikes me as ironic in a way that I will pass on.

    Our shirts are all-caps. I STILL CALL IT SKYDOME is one of our more popular designs. If it doesn’t work for you, that’s fine. FWIW, you are literally the one person who’s ever raised this issue. If you had raised it years ago, we would have considered doing a special shirt just for you. Take care.

    Looking at the Captain Butker pic, what is the long white strip coming from Lenoir’s belt? I saw a few others with red ones, basically centered at their waist. Like one extra long flag-football flag. Is there a purpose except self expression?

    Noticed one of the SF players with the red one. Didn’t note who it was. You would think at first glance the undershirt was maybe ripped but then you notice it is something the player was doing on purpose. The purpose of it I guess is to pretend you have a long tail. It looked ridiculous IMO. The mismatching of socks for the 49ers ruins the look of the team.

    IMO, we were SO close to having a kicker named MVP for the first time. Mahomes deserved it, but Butker was strongly in the running…

    Mahomes, in four games, was 104 of 149 for 1051 yards, with 6 TD against one pick. That’s a 100.3 passer rating. What part there doesn’t qualify as “great” for you?

    Seeing the captain “C” made me think that if and once there is a 100th edition of the SB, will that be utilized in marketing or will the NFL likely use Arabic numbers permantely far that?

    *Also, SB LIX also looks odd to me

    *I guess we will have to wait until the April 5th, 2066 (after the 26 week NFL season) edition of Uni-Watch..

    Sorry if I missed this in the SB preview, but Paul did a feature about KC’s helmet logo and the black elements a while back, pointing out that there’s no black anywhere else on the unis (I can’t unsee this now… thanks Paul). Again, as Mr. Observant himself, I never really noticed or thought about the 49ers having the same issue. That is, the helmet logo has black outlines, while the regular jerseys and pants only have white, red and gold. I know the KC logo was partially inspired by Mr. Hunt liking the interlocking SF logo, but that’s another similarity with these teams’ sets. Trying to think of any other teams that have this same peculiarity.

    Just to clarify, does this mean that after February, Uni Watch merch won’t be available for purchase anywhere?

    I took that to mean new merch will still be added, but he’s not going to go back and add all the old merch in.

    Looks like last year’s nominees also wore them in SB LVII…

    Eagles – Brandon Graham: link

    Chiefs – Mahomes again: link

    So, probably just the SOP for that decal at this point.

    I’m fairly certain that Gostkowski was a captain for some of his time in NE, but we know the Patriots don’t do the patches.

    I’m fairly certain that not only Butker, but KC’s punter Tommy Townsend had the captaincy patch last night as well.

    Isn’t there usually a reader/contributor that researches super obscure facts leading up to the Super Bowl? Did I miss it?

    Even my wife, who thinks I’m nuts with my interest in uniforms, mentioned that SF had mismatched hosiery. She even pointed out one player that had red socks, but bare upper legs and knees. I couldn’t help but think of the meme with the emperor from Star Wars saying…”I have taught you well, my young apprentice”

    I feel like the 49ers have consistently had the mismatched hosiery problem as an organization for the last decade and a half or more. I remember when they brought back the somewhat more traditional uni set in 2009, it was very nice to look at, but on the field my eyes kept wandering to how nobody was wearing the same color or length of socks and it drove me batty. Set me off on noticing it on other teams as well but they were far and away the worst offenders even back then.

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