Back in April, as part of my coverage of the NFL/Nike unveiling, I wrote the following:
Giants equipment manager Joe Skiba tells me that all players can now wear team-colored shoes, although they have the option of sticking with white or black. So the longstanding rule mandating predominantly black or white footwear has apparently been scrapped (I’m trying to get league confirmation on this).
I was never able to get a straight answer from the league back in the spring, so I let it go and figured we’d find out once the preseason started. And as it turned out, everyone in the preseason just wore black shoes or white shoes, so I figured the idea of wearing team-colored shoes was dead. I double-checked with the league on this a week ago, just to be sure, and again couldn’t get an answer out of them. (The NFL’s responsiveness to uni-related queries has really gone down the crapper.) Probably should’ve double-checked with Skeebs as well, but he was getting ready for the start of the season and I didn’t want to bother him.
Well, we now have our answer, because the most of the Giants were wearing predominantly gray footwear, with blue and red accents, last night. A few players wore black, but they were in the distinct minority. Let’s say this makes me very nervous about what the Vikings and Ravens will be wearing on their feet this Sunday.
As for the Cowboys, on TV it looked like they were all wearing white shoes. But upon looking at some game photos, I saw that Jason Witten’s shoes were silver (maybe a gift from his spleen doctor or something).
A few other game notes:
• Tony Romo is wearing one of those new Rawlings helmets. It’s easy to identify because its neck bumper is narrower and extends higher than what we’re used to seeing.
• I see the trend of defensive backs looking like they’re wearing tzittzit is alive and well.
• Has anyone else noticed that some of the scab zebras are a bit, shall we say, portlier than the regular officials?
Meanwhile, unrelated to last night’s game, reader Alex Putelo has pointed out two other NFL issues, both involving sleeve patches, that I hadn’t spotted:
• The Dolphins’ sleeve patch is significantly smaller than before.
• It looks like the blue tone on the Pats’ Flying Elvis sleeve patch now matches the blue of the jersey. I’d never noticed that the two blues didn’t match before — and of course it could just the way the light hits the threads on the patch as opposed to the way it hits the jersey fabric — but I spent a bit of time looking at photos, and it definitely seems that the blue on the patch was consistently lighter than the blue on the jersey in recent seasons. For the record, the Pats have had only one official shade of blue for the past 12 years — Pantone 289 — so the patch and the jersey should match. And now it appears that they do.
Looking for more NFL news? In case you missed it yesterday, my annual NFL season-preview column is available here.
One more FBS uniform change on tap for today: Buffalo is awarding merit decals this season. (My thanks to Dennis Abrams for this one.)
PermaRec update: Some illustrations based on discarded vintage photos, along with some beautiful old report cards from Oregon (one of which is shown at right), are the basis of the latest entry on the Permanent Record Blog.
Uni Watch News Ticker: The Knicks will officially unveil their new uniforms today at 11am Eastern. I was going to attend, but the team went out of its way to leak the new design yesterday, so I’m not going to bother. If they don’t take their own unveiling seriously, why should I? … I will, however, be attending a ’47 Brand promotional event this evening, mainly because of the free eats and drinks. … Want to make the MLB postseason even though you’ve been outscored by your opponents? It can be done — as long as you change your uniform (from Bryan Duklewski). … What the hell was Brian Urlacher doing in a Navy jersey? (From Michael Korczynski.) … Interesting infographic on the psychology of logo colors. … What do Steelers coach Mike Tomlin and I have in common? We both hate a certain loathsome color (from Yancy Yeater). … Each NFL team now has a fan-designed flag (from Tom Mulgrew). … I know I say this a lot, but Hamilton Nolan is really, really good. … My ESPN colleague Patrick Dorsey wrote a piece about an interesting baseball artist. … It’s hard to see, but Longhorns safety Kenny Vaccaro has RNOB (from Matt Mitchell). … Here’s a really great item about typography on a glass roof. Recommended (big thanks to Dave Wilson). … This is surprising: a Nike sneaker with no swooshes on the sides (from Terry Duroncelet). … Terry also recently spotted a Bud Light banner shaped like a Saints jersey, complete with the Nikelace. That’s an impressive (if disappointing) level of detail. … A Colorado school district has told students that they can’t wear Peyton Manning jerseys to school because No. 18 is a gang-related number. … ESPN’s David Pollack tweeted a photo of a matte red Cincy Bearcats photo, although I have no idea of if it’s actually going to be worn (from Leo Thornton). … New logos and uniforms for the Coast Guard Academy (from Miles Eakins). … Here’s a little slideshow of Raiders equipment manager Bobby Romanski applying the team’s captaincy patches (from Rudy Gutierrez). … Love this 1954 Shibe Park snack bar menu, especially the very uni-relevant “Please Note” bit at the bottom (big thanks to Tom Mulgrew). … New mask for Jonas Hiller (from John Muir). … Deadspin had a funny piece yesterday about why you should go ahead and buy a $200 polyester shirt. I don’t really agree with any of it, but it’s entertaining. … Nike has announced a new partnership with the Spanish Basketball Federation (Leo Thornton again). … Yankees pitcher David Robertson, who normally goes high-cuffed, joined the pajamists last night. Disappointing (from Mikhail Herrera). … Always fun to see examples of logos with good use of negative space (from Lou Sherwood).
Hall Monitor Dept.: At the conclusion of last night’s Giants/Cowboys game, someone posted a snarky comment directed at Giants fans. As soon as I saw it, I took it down. I don’t want fan-baiting comments on the site — they have nothing to do with uniforms, they have nothing to do with advocating one idea over another, and they just serve to be inflammatory. If you want to say, “The Giants suck,” well, that comment might get taken down too, but at least it’s better than “Hey, Giants fans, your team sucks!” With football season getting underway, let’s please avoid any and all fan-baiting comments. Thanks.