[Ed. Note] Since it's late Friday night/early Saturday morning, we thought it was a good time to turn Paul loose with an old-fashioned, "you kids get off my lawn" rant. Enjoy! [End Note]
"You got to look good to play good," My Old Coacher used to say. Clearly, My Old Coacher was not an English major. But he was wise in all manner of things, so I cut him some grammatical slack as a gesture of respect and affection.
The Cowboys have historically looked good, and have dressed well. At least at home. At least since 1964. At least anytime Jerry Jones has resisted the temptation to tinker with perfection.
It's time to Throw Out The Throwbacks. It's time to Ax The Alternates. Take those ridiculous, embarrassing, cheesy, rode into town on a turnip truck, get 'em free in every box of Breeze Detergent, white helmeted, shoulder patched sartorial horrors and either:
1) Launch them into orbit around Alpha Centauri.
2) Bury them in a steel-reinforced concrete vault beneath the Dead Sea.
3) Dump them down the mouth of Vesuvius and wait for the fireworks. Burn, Baby, Burn.
Look, I like Eddie LeBaron. I just don't want my modern-day 'Boys looking like Eddie LeBaron. Or like Porter Wagoner.
Fact: The Cowboys in their standard home whites are the best-dressed team in the NFL. Tex Schramm's bold move to "Metallic Silver Blue" in '64 was marketing genius, as was his decision to have the 'Boys wear white jerseys at home, thus allowing Dallas fans to see the full spectrum of NFL "home" colors from visiting teams. That takes care of My Old Coacher's "look good" premise.
As for "play good"? The record over the past 46 years speaks for itself. During those four and a half-plus decades, that classic home look has seen some slight, periodic adjustments--one less jersey stripe here, one more blue star border there, some jacking with the numeral font style, and moving the jersey "tv numbers" from the top of the shoulders to the side and back again. But the "fundamentals" have remained unchanged, and timeless. The Cowboys' classic uni is the definition of "stylish." And style, unlike fashion, is forever.
Yankee pinstripes. Amanda Peet in a little black dress. Cowboys in their stunning home whites. You wanna mess with any of that?
Jerry does. At least a couple of times a year. Apparently just because he can. Jer, you own the most valuable franchise in the NFL, an organization that is now a bona-fide American icon. Do you really need a little extra merchandising jack, especially if it's generated at the cost of making your players dress like 'Lil Abner? I' m surprised you didn't stick a little buckskin flappin-fringe at the bottom of those horrendous jerseys.
I'm still convinced the 1994 NFC Title Game loss to the 'Niners, the only thing standing between the 'Boys and four straight Super Bowl titles, resulted directly from Jerry's decision to go with those nasty "double star" jerseys. Hey, I'm a fan as well as an analyst, and that gives me the right to make the occasional irrational, unsupported , superstitious pronouncement!
For the love of all that is holy, Trash the Throwbacks. Logic 101: If you start with perfection, then any deviation is by definition a downgrade.
One little suggested "Back to the Future" tweak. Let's go back to the sleek, distinctive "fast looking" jersey numeral style the team wore from '64 through '84. The bulky, block numerals adopted in 1985 look clumsy and plodding by comparison.
Okay. Then there are the oft-discussed, oft-cussed, oft-cursed, and oft-changed blue jerseys. I'll save one last rant on that for later today before I completely get out of "bye week mode" and turn my full attention to the Titans.
You got to look good to play good. My Old Coacher knew his stuff.