In 1994, to commemorate its 75th season, the NFL allowed teams to wear throwback uniforms.
Eight years later, NFL alternate uniforms were introduced, giving teams a unique opportunity to showcase their style and swag.
Although it was the last professional sports league to introduce alternate uniforms, the NFL has become more lenient in recent years toward team attire. Since the 2018 season, teams have been allowed to wear alternate jerseys three times a year and can up to two alternate uniforms throughout the season.
Another game-changer that will excite uniform enthusiasts will be made for this upcoming season. Teams will get to wear a second helmet in 2022.
As the slowest period of the NFL’s off-season gets underway and next campaign looms in the distance, let’s take a look at the NFL alternate uniforms that flash, dazzle, and shine bright (in no particular order).
Philadelphia Eagles – All-Black Alternate
These all-black NFL alternate uniforms have been a mainstay for the Eagles since the 2003 season. Mainly worn for primetime games, the slick, intimidating black shines bright under Lincoln Financial Field’s lights, meshing perfectly with the unsettling energy of Philly fans.
Los Angeles Chargers – Royal Blue “Color Rush” Alternate
The Chargers might not be able to close out games, but they may have shut the door on the alternate uniform competition. The sparkling white helmet with the striking bolt really stands out. Any jersey will shine bright at SoFi Stadium, but the Chargers outdid themselves with these, adding to perhaps the best jersey collection and uniform makeover in the NFL.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Pewter Alternate
Some might say they are boring and too simple, but a Tom Brady-led team can make any jersey look good. Tampa should wear these jerseys more than once a year. Pewter is a compelling color choice. The Bucs were in a desperate need of a jersey makeover before Brady’s arrival, and they succeeded in creating a pleasing mix of classic and modern.
Cincinnati Bengals – All-Orange Alternate
These all-orange jerseys have earned their stripes. They take on a less-is-more approach and the white numbers blast off. The stripes are not distracting, fitting perfectly on the shoulders. Hats off to the Bengals for combining elegance and simplicity.
Pittsburgh Steelers – Black “Color Rush” Alternate
These jerseys do not stray away from the classic black and yellow look which has spanned generations, and that may be a good thing. I would not call these jerseys unique or special, but they offer a modern nostalgia. The Steelers are one of the most famous brands in American professional sports, and I really do not see another way the organization could design an alternate without sticking to the majority black look.
Los Angeles Rams – White Alternate
An LA team needs to have an LA feel. The reigning Super Bowl champions white alternates capture the essence of Los Angeles, a city that is constantly reinventing itself, but still holds old values close to the heart. Although the numbers look like they are made of cellophane, the white jersey bounces off the sunny yellow pants. Fans from all across the NFL have taken a substantial liking to this set, proving their appeal.
Baltimore Ravens – Black Alternate
The Ravens do everything well as an organization, from their play on the field, all the way to their jerseys. The Ravens’ black alternates carry the formidable spirit of Ray Lewis, Ed Reed, and Terrell Suggs. Primarily wearing these for primetime games since 2004, they look awesome in rainy, foggy games in Baltimore.
Read more about the Ravens.