Pittsburgh Steelers Throwback Uniforms: Grading the Outlandish Retro Jerseys

Steven Cook@@stevencookinFeatured Columnist IVOctober 29, 2012

PITTSBURGH, PA - OCTOBER 28:  Ike Taylor #24 of the Pittsburgh Steelers reacts after breaking up a pass in the forth quarter as Cortez Allen #28 looks on against the Washington Redskins during the game on October 28, 2012 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  The Steelers defeated the Redskins 27-12.  (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)
Justin K. Aller/Getty Images

The 2012 football season should be called the "Year of the Uniform" with all the new jerseys and helmets popping up, and no set of unis so far this season—at the college or pro level—have been more talked about than the throwbacks donned by the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday.

The bumblebee jerseys made headlines as soon as they were announced back in April, and they lived up to the hype. However, the black-and-yellow distractions didn't keep the Steelers from stomping all over Robert Griffin III and the Washington Redskins in a 27-12 victory.

The uniforms were inspired by jerseys donned by the team back in 1933.

Let's take a look at grades for these controversial uniforms.

Jerseys: D

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The only thing that is keeping these hideous jerseys from garnering an F- is the fact that they attracted so much attention. 

It's almost impossible to dress a group of large men any more hilariously than the Steelers were dressed on Sunday. As if the treacherous black and yellow stripes weren't enough, they combated them with ugly block letters that made the Steelers players look even more awkward.

I had to check my TV dial to make sure I hadn't switched to the rugby channel.

How fitting was it that they debuted these unis on the weekend before Halloween? It's like the uniform's designers wanted to dress up Heinz Field as a beehive for Sunday's "costume party," and the 200-to-300-pound defenders running around the field were bees buzzing all over RGIII's backfield.

Helmets: B

With how outlandish the Steelers' jerseys looked, how was it that they couldn't muster a unique helmet design to go along with it?

As the Pittsburgh players threw on some of the most jaw-dropping jerseys in NFL history, they boasted the same old traditional helmets. 

The Steelers' helmets are one of the most illustrious in the NFL and would regularly garner a perfect grade. But the lack of effort makes me err on the side of caution and assume that they just couldn't find an odd enough helmet to go along with the Pittsburgh Bumblebees.

Pants/Socks: F

Talk about overkill.

As if it wasn't enough to wear those hilarious black and yellow stripes down their entire torso, the Steelers added them to their socks to complete the disaster.

If Pittsburgh wanted to go all out with the stripes, why make the pants so bland? The mixture of off-white and yellow looked more like a color scheme that you'd find in a toilet rather than on an NFL jersey. 

Overall: C-

The Steelers undoubtedly attracted attention to an already-enticing matchup against the Redskins with these unis, and that reason alone deserves a bit of credit.

But as you can already tell, I hate these jerseys. The only thing worse than what they wore above the waist is what they donned from the waist down. 

Who knows if these rugby-style uniforms distracted the opposition, but Pittsburgh won easily regardless. The Steelers will be donning the interesting jerseys once more this season, and if they come out of that match with another victory, then there might just be a method to the madness that is the Steelers' retro uniforms.


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