Ranking the NFL's 15 Greatest Uniforms Ever

Tim Kelly
June 03, 2020 - 11:37 am

In 2013, as the NFL began to seriously attempt to improve player safety, a rule was instituted that players had to wear one helmet throughout the course of the season. Though the rule probably had an interesting neurological explanation, it had an unintended consequence on the aesthetics of the NFL.

The Dallas Cowboys, for example, wore a white and blue navy jersey everything Thanksgiving Day from 2004-2012. Why were those uniforms put on the shelf? Because they included a white helmet with a solid navy blue star, rather than the team's traditional silver helmets that have a navy blue star with white trim. With the one-helmet rule, it became nearly impossible for teams to wear helmets that had a different primary color than their regular helmets, forcing the Cowboys to ditch those alternate uniforms.

Some teams have found creative ways around the helmet rule, like switching the logo on each helmet to match a throwback jersey, but keep the primary helmet color the same. Said arrangement have yielded mixed results. However, as far actually changing the helmet color for one game - and then having to change it back immediately after the game - there aren't enough Rudy Ruettiger's eager to furiously paint team helmets to make it work.

There's some evidence that the NFL may adjust the rule for the 2021 season, which would allow some of the greatest uniforms in NFL history to return. Let's take a look at the 15 greatest uniforms that the sport has ever seen, many of which are affected by the one-helmet rule:

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