I know that my partners Jon (Brewers Guy), and Devin(Bucks Guy) have broken down the Brewers and Bucks uniform dilemma as of late. I can tell you that the Packers do not have a dilemma at all. They are as classic as classic gets when discussing uniforms. They have made subtle changes through the years, but have always stuck to what makes the Packers great, and that is their illustrious history. The even more fun thing to do is to piece those things together and come up with what would be ‘The Perfect Uniform’ (Spoiler alert-Not a lot is going to change, nor should it). Let’s start back with the Lombardi Era Packers.
1961-1980ish- At this point the Packers added the elongated ‘G’ to the helmet, prior to that the helmet was just a Mustard Yellow helmet with the green and white stripes. At that time the Packers also changed the striping to their socks. Much like every other team in the NFL at that time the face masks were gray and not color based specifically to each team. Those uniforms stayed in place until about the mid-late 70’s when the Packers changed the striping on their pants. They made the stripes noticeably wider (By about an inch). Along with those changes, the Packers also put every player’s name on the back of the jersey in 1970 as it was mandated to do so by the NFL.
1980-Packers change the Facemask from Gray to Green. (Biggest mistake they have ever made)
Fast forward to the year 1984- The Forrest Gregg era. This is when the uniforms are adjusted the most. It is a shame that Forrest didn’t care as much about the p lay on the field. He made the most changes to the Packers uniform since Lombardi in 1959; the team added logo to float on each sleeve’s striping, uniform numbers to rest on each hip, and altered pants striping to include gold. “TV numbers” moved from arm to shoulder and a gold and white collar-enhanced neckline. This look hung around for about 3 years, after Gregg left the Packers so did the numbers on the pants.
Now we finally get into the era’s that I can remember personally (Sorry I was not alive when all that was going down).
1992- The Packers removed all stripes from their socks, and began a sponsorship from Starter( That deal would last until the 1997-1998 season when Nike took over). Blah, blah, blah. Let’s get to the fun stuff.
1994- Like everyone had to wear throwbacks for the 75th Anniversary of the NFL. The Packers brought back their throwback from the late 30’s where they wore light brown pants, as well as a blue jersey with yellow shoulders.The unique thing about these uniforms is that they actually wore an alternative version of this uniform combo on Halloween of that season on Monday Night Football against the Bears. They wore the same uniform, only the jersey was white. This is the ONLY time they wore those uniforms since. The Packers have actually begun wearing those throwbacks as their alternative jersey, effective in the 2016 season and will expire in 2021.
1994- Ron Wolf proposes the Packers change their color from Green and Yellow to Green and Gold. From the looks of this model it is a damn good thing they chose not to.
2001- The Packers wear throwbacks on the road against the Lions on Thanksgiving. The throwbacks are pretty plain throwbacks, but kind of sweet regardless. (Gray face masks look awesome, always.)
2003– The Packers pay homage to Lombardi’s Packers. They again play at Detroit for Thanksgiving and wear the 1960’s throwbacks. They rocked the gray face masks, black shoes, multiple stripes on the sleeves, as well as socks. This uniform combo is absolute fire!!!
2008-Packers move from white cleats (Wore them all preseason, and for 20+ years) to black cleats during the regular season.(Still one of the worst decisions they have made. White always looks better!)
2010- The Packers unveil the ‘Powerball Uniforms’ (1929 Packers Uniform). This is the teams alternate for the next 5 seasons. For the first three seasons they wear a Brown helmet to show similarities to an actual leather helmet. In 2013 the NFL implemented a rule that teams could only use one helmet per season (Thus ending all cool throwback uniforms forever (Thanks Roger)). So upon that rule being implemented the Packers stripped the logo off the yellow lids and rolled out there looking even worse.
2012- Nike takes over the NFL. The Packers wanted to remain so classic that they didn’t even allow the NFL to change their fabric (like all other teams) to a new fabric on the jerseys. The packers uniforms remained the exact same except the Reebok logo was replaced with the Nike swoosh.
2015- The Packers change back to their 1930’s uniforms as their alternate jersey, changing from the ‘Powerball Uniforms’ that they wore for the past 5 seasons. The Powerball jerseys paid homage to the 1929 Packers. Who wore it better? Aaron, or Brett?
2016- The Packers were also forced to wear a ‘Color Rush’ as every team has to when they play on Thursday Night Football. It was rumored that the Packers would have to wear a Yellow on Yellow combination (Thank god that didn’t happen. How awful does this look?!)(PHOTO). Instead they wore white uniforms at home (First time since the 1989 season when they played the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and New Orleans Saints). FUN FACT- The Packers wore white because it was rumored that Buccaneers QB Vinny Testeverde was color blind and could not distinguish between the green grass, and the reddish jerseys the Bucs were wearing.
So there you have it. That is a lot of typing for me to tell you that they actually have changed very little over the past 70 years. That is what makes the Packers the Packers. The next changes that the Packers should make are the following.
- Get those Gray facemasks back!
- Get the stripes back on the socks!
- Bring back the white shoes!
- Don’t be afraid to rock those white pants again either at home, or on the road
That is an opinion from a die hard football fan, and uniform junkie. Give me something like this with a Gray facemask! (Credit given to Paul Lucas-Looks great!)