Recent NFL rule changes have allowed teams to wear multiple jerseys throughout the season, and so far teams wearing throwbacks are 3-1
Athletes have a litany of superstitions. Gameday habits help NFL players mentally prepare. Even minor tweaks to a Sunday ritual, however, might put a quarterback off his game or place a lineman in the wrong headspace to compete. One recent rule change might open the door for fun and new superstitions to unpack.
At the end of the 2021 season, the NFL phased out its one-helmet rule, which allowed teams to work their beloved throwback jerseys into a few games.
This season, NFL teams are bringing back some of the most cherished throwback jerseys in history, and you can catch many of your favorite teams sporting them throughout the season. But in a world where athletes find solace in routine and comfort in repetition, it’s fair to ask whether such minor changes could impact performance on the field.
The simple answer is “no way,” but before we jump to any rash conclusions, let’s take a look at how teams wearing throwback jerseys have performed so far.
Throwback uniforms have a really good win-loss record so far in NFL
The New York Giants brought back their helmets from the 80s and 90s, with “GIANTS” etched in block lettering, in a 20-12 win over the Chicago Bears on October 2.
The Patriots donned their red jerseys with the cartoon revolutionary soldier in a 29-0 rout over the Detroit Lions.
This past week, fans saw two throwbacks. The Atlanta Falcons wore their red helmets in a surprise victory over the 49ers, while the Green Bay Packers rocked plain yellow helmets circa the 1950s in a surprise loss to the New York Jets.
That’s 3-1 for throwbacks so far this season. Not a bad track record. The Cowboys will bring back an older version of their helmets for Thanksgiving, while the Giants will sport their classic helmets again on December 4.
And in 2023, the Eagles and Buccaneers have already stated they plan to bring back their own classic uniforms—much to the fans’ delight.
It’s too early to read deeply into this trend, but if a retro jersey is one small key to success, maybe we’ll see a mad dash by other teams to throw it back.