25 Most Recognizable Signature Apparel in the NFL
The NFL, or No Fun League, discourages players from separating themselves from their teammates by enforcing rules with hefty fines that are best described as consistently inconsistent.
Don't expect any shoes on this list as this is the NFL, not the NBA. It's hard for players to create an individual brand because each man is limited in what he can do thanks to Roger Goodell.
Somehow, someway, these characteristics rise above the normal, bland blend of what we regularly see on Sundays.
25. Denver Broncos Throwback Jerseys
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Denver's throwback uniforms should be done away with. If the team really wants to wear old uniforms, the Broncos should make new ones so they can call what they wear now "old."
The colors are terrible together, and it looks like crap has been smeared down the socks.
It doesn't help when the NFL wears throwback jerseys as much as the regular uniforms. I don't care how much the old stuff is promoted, I'm not buying it on NFL.com, and I wouldn't wear anything associated with the color scheme even if it were free.
24. Philadelphia Eagles Throwback Uniforms
Philadelphia has arguably the best alternate jerseys in the entire league so it's confusing as to why the team would choose to wear these ugly things. Then, I realize the NFL wants to advertise more apparel in hopes of selling this ugly colored trash.
The Eagles seem to play well while looking terrible with the old-school uniforms. Philadelphia's throwbacks aren't the worst in the NFL, but they're pretty close.
23. Green Bay Packers Throwback Uniforms
Who knew Green Bay had older uniforms than the ones the team already wears?
I'm not a huge fan of the Packers' classic uniforms each player wears now, but it doesn't look this bad.
22. Pittsburgh Steelers Throwback Uniforms
Just like Green Bay's uniforms, Pittsburgh's current gear is pretty basic as it is. The older style uniforms aren't that bad though.
The design basis looks a lot like No. 21. James Harrison is always the guy I think of for some reason when it comes to this jersey.
21. Chicago Bears Throwback Uniforms
Throwback done right. Chicago's old school uniforms are arguably better than the ones they wear now.
Orange is a hit-or-miss color for most, but there's not too much of it if it doesn't suit your taste.
20. New England Patriots Throwback Uniforms
New England may have the best combination of regular and throwback jerseys in the NFL. It doesn't matter if the Patriots go out primarily in the blue or red, the team is styling.
19. DeSean Jackson's Helmet
Since DeSean Jackson had his world rocked in 2010 by Dunta Robinson of the Falcons, the receiver has worn the new anti-concussion helmet. One can still sustain a concussion wearing it, but the odds are severely reduced.
Concussions cannot be taken lightly and helmet-to-helmet hits will not be tolerated.
This message was brought to you in part by Roger Goodell.
18. Tony Romo's Wristband
The sleeve is in existence for making play-calling easier on the quarterback even though many don't wear it. Others think it's an insult to their intelligence (I'm looking at you Mr. McNabb).
Tony Romo even has a SportsCenter commercial with it.
Maybe the Cowboys' quarterback throws it to the wrong team, but at least he goes into the play knowing what he's supposed to do.
In my weird mind, I always associate Jason Witten's sleeve as Buzz Lightyear-like.
Romo doesn't wear the play-calling wristband anymore, but players like Tom Brady still do on occasion.
17. Clay Matthews Shoulder Pads
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Clay Matthews' shoulder pads, or lack thereof, certainly get attention. Green Bay's defensive stud admitted that he finds the smallest shoulder pads he can and wears them.
The advantage, says Matthews, is that offensive tackles have less to grab onto. It must be true by watching the outside linebacker's play.
Many other defensive ends go without significant protection, but Matthews is the most noticeable of them as he's always making plays.
16. Dwight Freeney's Arm Bands
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Over 10 years, Dwight Freeney has been a similar sight in opposing team's backfield. Opposition must've noticed Freeney's arm bands by now as well.
Others may go with the full sleeves, but Freeney's forearm covers are more memorable. DeMarcus Ware is the other notable name that rocks the bands that is on the same level as Freeney.
The most notable thing about them is that Freeney is always spotlighted by the cameras on defenses when he's in his stance, ready to pounce on another quarterback.
15. Striped Socks
Striped socks usually look cool unless we're talking about Denver's old throwbacks. The throwback uniforms are generally the only uniforms that sport the stripes.
Among the best include Chicago's and New England's old throwback uniform socks. Why can't the NFL sell fans these instead of the jerseys that break the bank?
Use them as stocking stuffers, literally as stocking stuffers. It's a double gift.
14. Peyton Manning Towel
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It doesn't even matter if Peyton Manning isn't playing this season. Colts' fans know all about their quarterback of the past 10-plus seasons.
Manning is the most recognizable player for any team in the NFL. People notice any subtle oddity in apparel he wears. Maybe the towel goes somewhat unnoticed because it's white on white.
With Manning gone in 2011 from the Colts, Indianapolis has thrown in the towel (Sorry, had to).
13. Backwards Caps
Cameras always find the quarterbacks, especially after they've made it in the end zone. They always seem to put on the team apparel sponsored hats after a good play, not always a disappointing drive.
Among the more notable quarterbacks to be seen on the sidelines with the hat on backwards are Tony Romo and Ben Roethlisberger.
Colin Cowherd doesn't like his quarterbacks with their hats on backwards, and Steve Spurrier is in agreement.
12. Adrian Peterson's Elbow Pads
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No man runs as hard as Adrian "All Day" Peterson. No person of greater significance wears the elbow pads.
Peterson puts in work for a terrible team, and the elbow pads sum that up nicely. You're not going to hear whining about contract details when it comes to the runner from the state of Texas.
I'm guessing the pads are used to ease up on potential elbow pain when Peterson puts out his paw for a wicked stiff arm.
11. NFL Beanie Hats
As it gets colder throughout the 2011 season, you'll see the beanies worn more and more on the sidelines.
If you're looking to support your team in a cheaper fashion than buying something over $50, try one of these on for size. They are more effective than hats and being cold is a valid excuse for wearing one.
The throwback beanies look the best, but the new design for this season looks good.
No other American sports league does the beanie caps.
10. The Captain Logo
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NFL teams have 53 men on the active roster, but it still seems like a high number to have with six team captains.
The Jets' list of captains for 2011 is somewhat humorous, but fans still notice the "C" on the jersey.
Just because a certain player is better than the next doesn't mean he should warrant the label.
9. Eye Black
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Messages are not allowed on the eye black of NFL players, but guys like Ray Lewis find a way to draw attention to their face by unusual designs.
I can't look up my weekly Bible verse now that Tim Tebow is in the pros while Antrelle Rolle can't support his alma mater Miami.
I'm sure fans would MUCH rather try and read the blurry tattoos on players' arms.
8. Rex Ryan
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It's sad that coaches are allowed to be more versatile in their dress than the actual players on the field. Roger Goodell is to thank.
Rex Ryan's sweater vest never fails, always complementing the khakis. Ryan's clothing is about the only thing consistent about the Jets.
It's not that a coach like Jack Del Rio doesn't wear something more out of the ordinary, but the network cameras are always on Ryan for good reason.
7. Aaron Rodgers Championship Belt
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The belt doesn't even exist, but it's still around in theory for all the wrong reasons.
Mr. Goodell, just allow dancing for touchdowns because this celebration is terrible. The State Farm commercial is atrocious as well.
6. Michael Vick Hand Warmers
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Even going back to Michael Vick's Atlanta days, the quarterback has always worn the hand warmers.
In Philadelphia, Vick can be seen stuffing his hands between plays.
It's weird to have Vick listed for this particular aspect, but how many times do viewers see him on camera view? The answer is a lot.
Why would Vick want to hide his Superman tattoo?
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You won't catch (pun intended) a wide receiver or even a defensive back without gloves in today's NFL.
It'd be more noticeable to see someone not wearing the sticky material on their hands, but it won't happen, especially as it gets colder.
Leave it to the really hardcore linemen to go without.
Just don't try and wear these around in public. It's understandable to buy a particular player's gloves only if you're still playing ball.
4. Diamond Earrings
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Pick out one of your favorite players in the league today and you'll likely spot diamonds glistening attached to his ear.
When jewelry companies advertise their product by saying, "Buy diamonds for that special someone in your life," I don't think they have men in mind. Regardless.
3. Bill Belichick's Hoodie
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NFL coaches certainly don't have to dress up for game days, and Bill Belichick takes advantage of that. The bad weather in Foxborough can be used as an excuse for wearing the hoodie, but it's hit or miss for most.
Who else can you think of more directly connected to a hoodie? Kenny from South Park is a close second.
Belichick looks best, or worst, when he's rocking the cut-off hoodie at the elbows.
The Patriots' hoodie cannot be bought in this fashion, but you can cut them off yourself.
2. LaDainian Tomlinson's Tinted Visor
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We're seeing less and less of the dark black over LT's eyes as he's getting older. Remembering Tomlinson in San Diego flashes great memories of the top-10 running back's best days.
Others have sported the visor but not to similar significance. Tomlinson makes the two spot because no other player can imagine making one piece of equipment as tied to them as LT has done with the visor over his career.
Peyton Manning once wore a similar visor in practice. Hopefully, it was a joke.
It appears Calvin Johnson has the duty of carrying on the visor for years to come. The visor's fate rests in good hands (pun intended).
1. NFL Pink
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Breast cancer awareness month turned into a full NFL season last year as no game could go by without seeing the color.
The NFL is attempting to subliminally get more women to watch games by putting the cause out in the open, but there are many other cancers to bring to light.
I'm OK with players wearing the color even if it doesn't match up with their team's colors but don't fine anyone for wearing team colored socks.
Even if you're wearing your team's gear with the pink doesn't mean you'll get a signature, not even if you have breast cancer.
Hopefully, one NFL team sacrifices for the greater good by making pink their main color so fans don't have to see all teams wearing it.