When the Tampa Bay Buccaneers announced on Tuesday that they were scrapping plans to wear their “creamsicle” throwback uniforms this season, it shed light on a new NFL rule limiting players from wearing different helmets.
Apparently the league has instituted a new requirement that prevents teams from wearing different helmets during the season, such as the Packers have done in the past with their 1929 throwback uniforms, featuring a brown helmet meant to imitate the leather helmet of yesteryear.
“Teams may continue to wear throwback uniforms under league guidelines, but players must wear their regular helmets,” league spokesman McCarthy is quoted as saying. “The outside of the helmet can be modified by removing or replacing decals, as long as it does not affect the integrity of the helmet.”
The new rule has come about due to safety concerns.
“This offseason, we communicated a recommendation from the Head, Neck and Spine Committee and the Player Safety Advisory Panel to those teams planning to wear throwback uniforms for at least one game this season,” said McCarthy. “They recommended that players no longer wear different helmets as part of a ‘throwback’ or ‘third’ uniform.”
The news has gotten attention from Paul Lukas of Uni-Watch.com, who notes that other teams have already made alterations to their helmets this season:
The Bills and Bears, for example, both wore throwbacks this past Sunday, but they were both able to use their existing helmet shells. The Bears simply removed their decals and the Bills swapped out their charging buffalo for the standing buffalo. If the Lions wanted to wear their Thanksgiving throwbacks with the plain silver helmets, that would presumably be okay too.
What this means for the Packers is uncertain, but Lukas gave the matter some speculation:
The Packers are slated to wear their bullseye throwbacks, which include brown helmets, on Oct. 20. Maybe they’ll be issuing a statement similar to the Bucs’ announcement shortly..? Or maybe they’ll wear their regular helmets with the throwback uni? (By coincidence, a few years ago Phil had Photoshopped a photo to show how that might look — not bad!)
In related news, Cheesehead TV is continuing to sponsor Throwback Weekend on Oct. 19 and 20, where we’ll be in attendance for the game against the Cleveland Browns.
As part of the festivities, there will be a social gathering/tweet-up party at the Green Bay Distillery on Saturday Oct. 19 and a tailgate before the game on Sunday Oct. 20.
Registration is open at ThrowbackWeekend.com. We strongly encourage you join us!
— Jason Wilde (@jasonjwilde) September 18, 2013