I’m not going to lie—many things excite me. I have a natural enthusiasm for reboots. While many diehard fans are skeptical about CBS bringing back a refresh of Magnum PI, I rejoiced. Even though the updated version has a female Higgins and no Tom Selleck (or his ‘stache)....I can’t wait. I get excited over everything. The three things that I probably enjoy hearing the most are:
- “The McRib is back!”
- “The kids are both at sleep-overs, steaks are on the grill and I’ve already drained this bottle of Moscato.”
- “The Steelers are announcing new throwback jerseys.”
Granted, these statements don’t come around very often (I may have dreamed the second one) but, when they do, marching bands, balloons and visions of Lionel Richie singing “All Night Long” go off in my mind. When I read the tweet by the Steelers today about a forthcoming announcement on May 30th regarding new throwback jerseys, there was a feeling of extreme bliss consuming my entire landscape.
The NFL has ceased the mandate that teams must wear their Color Rush jerseys on Thursday nights, so the Steelers probably won’t be “back in all-black” in 2018.
The Steelers have a unique history of throwback uniform choices. In 1994, for a Week-3 contest vs. the Colts and later on at Arizona, the Steelers donned a very unique jersey from the 1933 season that featured a ‘V’, vertical stripes and the city’s coat of arms. It’s probably one of the most unique jerseys in team history. They were known as the Pirates back then and donned this daring look in the 1933 season only for the NFL’s 75th Anniversary season. I have the Dermonti Dawson version of this gem.
In 2007, the Steelers returned to throwbacks for their 75th-season celebration and wore them twice a year for five seasons. These paid homage to the 1960 jerseys, a stylish black jersey with gold letters, numerals and stripes. The helmets were opposite of what they always wear, gold with a black stripe. The pants were white with black-and-gold trim. The Steelers went 3-0 (4-0 overall) until losing to the Giants in 2008 for their first time in this particular style. Pittsburgh wore the throwback the maximum two times per year and went 7-3 in this garb.
In 2012, Steelers Nation was polarized when the Steelers adopted the 1934 convict/bee hybrid that fans called “the bumblebee jerseys”. I loved the jerseys and the gaudy socks, but the beige pants were offensive to the eyes. The Steelers did all right in this look too, going 4-2 before the garb was phased out after the 2016 season.
Although it wasn’t a throwback, the Steelers adhered to the NFL’s aforementioned Color Rush mandate for Thursday nights. They wore all-black on Christmas Day in 2016 against Baltimore and on TNF against Tennessee, moving their all-time record in alternative jerseys to 14-6.
No one is certain which throwback will be used in 2018, but my vote is for the “Batman” style that the team wore in 1967. I actually have the Antonio Brown version of this jersey. It is black and long-sleeved with white numbers and a triangular gold yoke that looks like a cape. The Steelers were horrendous wearing these jerseys in ‘67. Dan Rooney joked they were never coming back because of that. But you never know. The jersey is getting plenty of media and fan support.
There really aren’t too many other choices. The team could honor the glory days of the ‘70s, the ‘80s and most of the ‘90s, but that would merely be the same uniforms with block numbers. I wouldn’t be opposed to that as a permanent option. The team could also wear the white 1963 jobbies with the diamond-surrounded numbers on the sleeves and black sleeve and neck cuffs.
With no actual football or hockey to watch, I will eagerly and begrudgingly wait until the 30th, a Wednesday. But I will wonder aloud why they didn’t wait one more day to do it on Thursday...Throwback Thursday.