TAMPA, FL - JANUARY 27: Tampa Bay Buccaneers Executive Vice President Joel Glazer hoists the Vince Lombardi Trophy during a Super Bowl victory celebration January 27, 2003 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida. The Buccaneers defeated the Oakland Raiders 48-21 in Super Bowl XXXVII yesterday. (Photo by Chris Livingston/Getty Images)
Besides a 12-36 record over the last three seasons, another one of the things that have disappointed fans has been the disappearance of the “Throwback” game.
Usually associated with a Ring of Honor induction ceremony, the game was very popular with fans, particularly those that remembered the 0-26 start, the playoff run in 1979 that ended with a 9-0 loss to the Rams in the NFC Championship game, and even the 17 years of a floundering franchise that followed the last playoff season in 1982 until the team returned to the postseason in 1997.
Bucs throwback game in 2009 – Getty Images
The Buccaneers changed uniforms just prior to the 1997 season, switching from the creamsicle orange color scheme with the winking Bucco Bruce on a white helmet, to the very popular pewter and red combination that sported a menacing pirate and flag on a pewter-based helmet.
The Buccaneers dusted off the old orange and white uniforms for the first time in 2009 in a game against their old NFC Central rival Green Bay Packers, and did so every year until 2013 when an NFL rule preventing players from wearing different helmets once the season begins. The measure was adopted as part of safety measure that was recommended by the NFL’s Head, Neck and Spine Committee and the Player Safety Advisory Panel.
Last week, at the NFL Owner’s Meeting in Boca Raton, PewterReport.com had an opportunity to sit down in a one-on-one setting with Bucs co-chairman Joel Glazer. In the interview we asked Glazer if there were any changes coming uniform wise in the near future.
“The NFL is always looking to innovate and do things differently,” Glazer said. “Like the “Color Rush” (Thursday night game). That was something 24 months ago wasn’t even on the horizon. So they are always looking at ways to move things forward. We don’t have any specific things planned right now, but I know they are always looking for ways to come up with new innovative ideas.”
PewterReport.com then suggested could the 2002 Bucs uniforms one day become the new throwback.
Photo by: Getty Images
“Anything is possible,” Glazer said. “At this point that is a throwback, we have the other throwbacks, so no decision has been made on what it would be. But at this point anything that is not our current uniform is a throwback.”
While there may never be a day where Bucco Bruce is winking on the sidelines of Raymond James Stadium again, many Bucs fans would welcome at least a one-game break from the current uniforms and celebrate the original red and pewter scheme that was worn when the team hoisted their one and only Lombardi Trophy in San Diego back on January 26, 2003 following a dismantling of the Oakland Raiders.
Mark Cook currently is the director of editorial content and Bucs beat writer and has written for PewterReport.com since 2011. Cook has followed the Buccaneers since 1977 when he first began watching football with his Dad and is fond of the 1979 Bucs team that came within 10 points of going to a Super Bowl. His favorite Bucs game is still the 1979 divisional playoff win 24-17 over the Eagles. In his spare time Cook enjoys playing guitar, fishing, surfing and family time at the beach. In addition, Cook can be found in front of a television or in Doak Campbell any time the FSU Seminoles are playing. Cook is a native of Pinecrest in Eastern Hillsborough County and has written for numerous publications including the Tampa Tribune, In the Field and Ya'll Magazine. Cook can be reached at [email protected]
Thanks Mark for the great picture of that wonderful time!! Good work & article while things are slow. Come on “Draft Day”!!!
So, does the rule say that you cannot use a secondary helmet that has the same exact technology as the main helmet? I’m not sure I follow the logic of the rule? If it’s exactly the same helmet with a different outer appearance, what’s the issue? I would love to see both the Creamsicles & Superbowl era unis in the future. I actually liked the Color Rush unis as well. Maybe is some form of closure to see the Bucs in the Creamsicles actually win a football game?
It’s not a matter of the technology in the helmet. It’s an issue of the fit. Think of a pair of jeans. When you first put them on after you wash them, they’re snugger and tighter, more form fitting ish. If you then re-wear that same pair of jeans without washing it the next day, and then again a few days after that, they get progressively looser, less snug fitting.
The idea is the opposite with helmets, as per the NFL’s Head, Neck and Spine Committee and the Player Safety Advisory Panel. According to them, once a player starts wearing a helmet, it actually comes to fit him more tightly and, therefore, more safely, over time. Wearing the same helmet over time (supposedly) breaks it in and makes it safer. There is a lot of evidence suggesting that this isn’t actually the case, but that’s the premise the league is working under in its rule. So even though a new helmet may be identical from a makeup standpoint to a player’s weekly one, if they don’t fit as securely, then they can be less capable of protecting the player and preventing concussions. Again, that’s not necessarily actually true, but it’s the thought process under which the rule was made. In one article I’ve read, a source goes as far as to say, “It feels like a rule that was made to give the appearance of safety rather than actually providing it, like turning off your iPad during takeoff.”
Thanks for the clarification… I’m guessing then that, unlike a pair of jeans, breaking in a helmet would leave a player more vulnerable to injury until the helmet is broken in? That must mean that there is still room for improvement with their current design. Hopefully, when they figure out a way to have the helmet at “full protection” from the beginning, the League can get back to retro helmets for throw-back games.
I just do not buy it being impossible to duplicate two helmets. No throwbacks and yet those God awful “color flash” embarrassments no one out of kindergarden liked? Nonsense.
I am not saying that this would be the easiest thing to do but, couldn’t the Bucs just put a large decal/sticker on the current helmet. If they can wrap a car they should be able to wrap a helmet. That way Bucco Bruce with a white background is on the helmet and it all ties in together.
Anything is better than these fugly Nike uniforms.
Seems to me there were other teams donning their throwback uniforms last year…..including their old helmets. The Throwback games were a lot of fun. I liked wearing my old #43 Jerry Eckwood jersey. What was a bit strange was thinking #54 was Batman Wood instead of Lavonte David. Of course my mind snapped back to present day looking at #88. As JonnyG might say, “That was no Jimmie Giles out there”.
Stocker shouldn’t even be allowed to wear Giles number, in fact Stocker’s number is higher than his total receiving yds last yr
He’s a blocker and a very good one.
The Ducks change uni’s, and helmets like I change underwear, so I don’t know where the NFL came up with this idea. I never heard of a helmet fitting, or getting better over time. I thought all helmets could be adjusted as needed. What if a player has a head of corn rows on day one, then shaves his head mid season? It would seem to me that helmet wouldn’t fit properly, and would need to be switched, or adjusted.
So, if we can get an equipment guy to steal Cam’s helmet during a game, then he can’t play the rest of the season?
Coming from a motorcycle background, I don’t quite understand this rule- you’d think that all the impact that the helmets take during the season would compromise their integrity
I love the new uniforms, but I’d love to wear these for one home game a year and the creamsicle for one home game as well.
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