The Super Bowl’s Greatest (and Worst) Uniformed Matchups

Okay, so today the topic is still on Super Bowl uniforms and where they stand in terms of game aesthetics since the San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs are taking the field in two timeless looks – with the Chiefs barely seeing a change since 1963. On the other hand the 49ers saw a period of thirteen seasons, 1996-2008, where the team went with a look different from what their fans were accustomed, returning of the classic look in 2009.

But what other Super Bowls bore legendary aesthetics?

Which ones weren’t so hot?

Today, I’m giving my Top Five and Bottom Five in this category.

 

Bottom Five

Dishonorable Mention: Super Bowl XLVIII

You’re going to see a lot of displeasure thrown toward the Seahawks in this article, starting with Super Bowl XLVIII where at least the uniforms weren’t the worst I’ve ever seen. There’s a little bit to like here, such as the Seahawks donning white over blue and the Broncos going with an orange jersey.

But then there’s the what-if factor. What if the Seahawks still wore their 1983-2001 threads while Denver still wore their 1968-1996 base? What if the NFL allowed color versus color for two contrasting colors in the Super Bowl? That would be one good-looking game. As for the basic dark jersey versus light jersey, given the fact these teams are former division rivals, the game would’ve looked like this. Much better from what we saw on the field. Now, imagine the Hawks in royal blue.

 

Dishonorable Mention: Super Bowl XXXVI

Imagine a game where the Rams wore their look from Super Bowl XXXVI and the Patriots from Super Bowl XX. You got the royal blue and yellow going against red and white. Instead, we got this. It was a time of darker-colored fads in NFL history and while the Patriots continue to wear what has sadly become a championship look, the Rams have shied away. But the game could’ve looked like this. And again if the NFL allowed it, color versus color. That would’ve been one kickass-looking game.

 

 

5. Super Bowl XL

The Steelers sort of screwed this game up when they decided to wear white as the designated home team. While I can’t blame them, as they won every playoff game in white, it forced the Seahawks to play in their infamous gunmetal blue on gunmetal blue uniform. The Steelers hold a timeless look, whether it’s a black or white jersey. As for the Seahawks, they haven’t held a consistent look since 2001. This is what the game looked like. With two identical dark jerseys colors, color on color probably wouldn’t have worked if the Hawks still had their 1983-2001 AFC uniforms, but hey, at least the game would’ve looked respectable.

 

 

4. Super Bowl XLIX

And we feature the Seahawks again, this time against the Patriots. Again, could you imagine what the game would’ve looked like if it were color on color if the Pats wore their 1960s-1992 uniform base and the Seahawks went with their 1983-2001 base? Of course, the NFL doesn’t allow color on color in the Super Bowl, so the game would’ve probably looked like this (scroll down to the first group of photos once the link loads). Instead, we got this.

 

 

3. Super Bowl LI

I just can’t give neither the Patriots nor the Seahawks a break here, and I’m not done with the Pats just yet (see next game). Once again, let’s imagine for a second if the Falcons still bore their ‘Dirty Birds‘ look from Super Bowl XXXIII and the Patriots still bore the Pat Patriot look and the NFL allowed color versus color in the Super Bowl. Got that image in your mind? Alright, good. Now, imagine if the Falcons still wore the red jersey and red helmet, and the Pats came out wearing their white jerseys with their Pat Patriot look. Looks good, right? Better than the Reebok-era look the Falcons wore? Definitely.

 

 

2. Super Bowl XXXI

Like the Seahawks in Super Bowl XL, the Patriots totally screwed this thing up with these disasters. Now, even if the Patriots still had the Pat Patriot look back in 1996, color versus color wouldn’t have worked here because the color-blind crowd would’ve had a heck of a time distinguishing the teams. However, Pat Patriot versus the traditional Green Bay threads? That’s another story.

 

 

1. Super Bowl XXIX

I won’t lie. The 49ers looked damn good and the Chargers, despite wearing classic threads during the season, totally screwed this one up in their lone Super Bowl appearance. While the Niners went the classic uniform route in the game, as they’d pretty much done all season, the Chargers wore their normal road uniform. They could’ve worn this in the game. Instead, the game looked like this. And again, a color versus color Super Bowl matchup could’ve been possible here! Powder blue versus the Niners cherry red. That would’ve catapulted this game to Number One in the Honorable category.

 

Top Five

Honorable Mention: Super Bowl XX

The Chicago Bears and New England Patriots may have put on a one-sided Super Bowl, but as far as uniform aesthetics go, the two historic uniforms made this a watchable game. Regardless of the final score, the iconic Bears look that has lasted with few changes throughout the decades, coupled with Pat Patriot, made this game one to remember.

 

 

Honorable Mention: Super Bowl XIX

One year prior, Super Bowl XIX saw the Miami Dolphins taking on the San Francisco 49ers. Like the following season, we saw two historic, winning looks which saw very few changes to the uniforms’ base.

 

 

5. Super Bowl LIV

Two iconic uniforms and logos that have seen their fair share of Super Bowls. The Chiefs look has been a staple since the team’s founding as the Dallas Texans, with the look hardly changing since the team’s exception other than changes in the logo (for obvious reasons) and striping patterns. As for the Niners, they experienced a blip between 1996-2008 in which the team saw no Super Bowl appearances. However, the championship colors, and two Super Bowl appearances, returned for the team from 2009 to the present. Only the team’s helmet logo remains changed from the original championship look.

 

 

4. Super Bowl I

If you looked over one hundred rankings of NFL uniforms, you’d notice a pattern. The Chiefs and Packers will almost always receive a high ranking, with some potentially ranking them 1-2. Again, while small changes have occurred in the past, there’s a lot of consistency with these two looks.

 

 

3. Super Bowl XLV

Much like the above Super Bowl, the Steelers and Packers also have consistency in the uniform department. Both looks have remained NFL staples since the 1960s and will likely do so for years to come.

 

 

2. Super Bowl XLI

Super Bowl XLI saw the Colts play the Bears, two looks that would’ve remained eerily identical to one another if this game took place forty seasons before this meeting and it’ll much likely remain forty seasons after my writing of this article. There are very little changes in these uniforms other than striping, changes in color shades, and modern upgrades.

 

 

1. Super Bowls X, XIII, XXX

I don’t think anyone else can take this spot. Sure, there are contenders, but growing up anytime I thought of the Super Bowl, I pictured an inter-conference rivalry between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Dallas Cowboys. Nothing compares to the iconic lone star going to war with the (modified) steelmark logo. Arguably the most recognizable helmet logos in football today whose jerseys house legends from the teams’ dynasty eras of the 1970s all the way to present day. These two teams also have a combined eleven Super Bowl Championships as well as sixteen combined Super Bowl appearances. Here’s a look at Super Bowl X and XIII.

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