Monday, October 24, 2011
Jersey Monday: Vinny Testaverde
Holy crap this is a horrible jersey. I have a lot of bad jerseys, and honestly, based on overall career production Vinny Testaverde isn't really near the top (bottom?) of that list, but this is just such a weird jersey for me to have.
I got this jersey when I was in high school, in part because a friend of mine was a semi-close relative of Ravens owner Art Modell. Plus, as I've mentioned before, I was on a quest to get at least one jersey from every team in the league, and player selections were incredibly limited in the mid-'90s. Ray Lewis wasn't quite a national name yet, and so Vinny was the Ravens jersey representative nationwide.
The jersey itself is a pretty straightforward Champion number from the mid-'90s (1996 to be specific). Like all of Champion's jersey from that era, it uses the same generic lettering the company used for every team. I'd credit them for how well the numbers held up over the mesh, but that's really more a sign of how little I worse this jersey, and therefore how little it went through the washing machine. I haven't worn this in more than a decade, but I do remember the black sleeve stripe being weirdly constricting, despite it not being a spandex material.
As for the player, Testaverde was a carryover from the Browns years, and served two seasons as Baltimore's starting QB. He actually had his highest single-season passing yardage total in his first season in Baltimore, throwing for 4,177 yards, a Ravens' record that still stands (by more than 500 yards over the next best total). In fact, it'd be a Browns franchise record too, if the NFL acknowledged the shared history of the two teams.
Jersey Monday will continue every Monday until I run out of jerseys to spotlight. And since I’ve got more than 150 of them, that could be awhile. For the remainder of the NFL season, Jersey Monday will feature one of the teams playing on Monday Night Football.