On August 4th, 2013, the Miami Dolphins for the first time will be sporting their new look for this upcoming season. According to the Dolphins website, the Dolphins could be wearing white for the next two games.
Back in April, Paul Lukas of Uni-watch.com, a website that talks about jerseys and team uniforms, said that the Dolphins didn’t need to “fix what was not broken.” He said the Dolphins new jerseys, with the absence of the orange no longer “pop” like they have in the past.
Whether we agree with his expert opinion, the Dolphins will be wearing the new uniforms and have already taken steps to make those available to us as fans.
Whether you love the aqua or the white jersey, getting the number and player right should be your focus. So many times, we make a purchase on a Dolphins jersey and the player is gone. If you are like me, I have been focusing on getting Marino jerseys from every season through reputable collectors on Ebay. However, now is the time to move on and get some new threads with the new look and logo.
Before you go crazy and start shopping for your jersey, take a look at what you have to choose from. NFL jerseys come in three styles: Game, Limited, and Elite (authentic) and all from Nike.
The Game jersey and Limited jersey have the same exact sizing. The thing that separates the two, is the Limited has tackle twill numbers that are sewn on and are more of a true look to the jersey worn on the field. In addition, the Limited features the same Nike Flywire design that prevents the neck of the jersey from stretching.
The cost difference between the Game jersey and the Limited is about 35 dollars based on retailer pricing at the Dolphins store and the nflshop.com. The Limited costs more, but you get a jersey that is closer to the exact model worn on the field. Not to mention, it doesn’t look abnormally big when worn.
The elite jersey is the authentic jersey that most of us jersey aficionados are familiar with. If you are like me, you have 4 or more authentic jerseys hanging in your closet. Everything from Wilson to Nike to Reebok. The Elite jersey is cut a tad bigger so it can go over football pads. Not to mention it is more breathable and under the arms it has gussets or holes to have heat escape the jersey more easily. Nike constructed the Elite jersey to be sleek and have features that allow the jersey to standout.
The authentic could run upwards of $300 and for the Dolphins they are not yet available. I have been checking every day. However they will be soon enough. My guess is they will sell quickly because of the new logo and many Dolphins fans have already adapted quickly to the wave of the future.
As far as players are concerned, this is just more of my opinion in how I pick a jersey.
1. Number of years left on contract.
2. Productive contribution to the offense or defense.
3. Long term staying power as a Dolphin
If I were to rank the players that I'd get a jersey of right now, this is a list of the players I’d look at getting.
1. Cameron Wake: A ton of fans love Cam Wake. The former CFL standout and undrafted rookie earned a spot on this team. Last season he earned his second Pro Bowl bid because he can create nightmares for opposing quarterbacks and has earned double digit sacks in two of the past three seasons. His hard work and determination make him a fan favorite for the Dolphins.
2. Brian Hartline: Mainstay in Miami. Had an above average year last year and as a result is signed for 5 years. He will be a force this season should he get the ball into the end zone. Biggest upside for Hartline is when Mike Wallace earns double coverage, Hartline will be open thus creating more opportunities.
3. Reshad Jones: Even though he is in a contract year, Reshad Jones has shown up to OTAs, mini-camps, and has been productive in training camp. As the starter, no one at this point will unseat him from his position. If he continues to showcase his skills as a ball-hawk and game-changer, the Dolphins will keep him in Miami.
4. Ryan Tannehill: While in his second season, he has the lead in jerseys sold on the Dolphins. Tannehill has much to prove in 2013 in more areas than one. Mainly, if he throws for 40 touchdowns, Tannehill will be on the Dolphins for his career. If he throws for 25-30, then he can be a mainstay. Personally, I am not quite sold on his potential which is why I’d hold off on buying an Elite jersey for Tannehill. For me, he’d have to get the Dolphins into the playoffs more than one time.
5. Mike Pouncey: If you are a big guy and you love the way this guy plays, Pouncey is a nice pick. He blocks to the second level and makes good calls for the line. Personally, Pouncey is one heck of a center, but he might be at Guard due to concerns with the flexibility of the offensive line. Pouncey, could be a mainstay, and in Miami for some time and join the ranks of Miami Dolphins all-time offensive linemen.
6. Mike Wallace: New free-agent acquisition and has a four year contract that could be extended down the road. Personally, I am not a huge fan of receiver jerseys, but maybe that’s because it has been awhile since the Dolphins have had an elite receiver. Wallace has a nice number 11, but I am sure some of you are wishing it stayed Jim Jensen’s number.
7. Dion Jordan: Even though he was drafted number one by Miami (3rd overall in the draft), he has a ton of upside and could become a force for the Dolphins. If he shows he can sack Tom Brady 4 times in a game, I am all for buying his jersey.
Of course, if you want to customize a jersey and get your name or Undefeated #72, there is nothing wrong with that. The important thing is, that you make a purchase that you are happy with and aren’t feeling buyers’ remorse 10 months down the road when Jeff Ireland releases or trades your favorite player and your stuck wearing that jersey to the next Dolphins game.