Monday, November 07, 2011
Jersey Monday: Ricky Watters
Ah, the Logo 7 jersey: the lame step up from "unlicensed knockoff" in the early and mid '90s. It's easy to forget, but prior to the league-wide Reebok deal in the early '00s, there were about half a dozen companies that had licenses to make NFL replica jerseys. Champion was the primary supplier, and made jerseys that looked reasonably like the on-field product. Then there was Logo 7, which made really low-quality -- but also lower-priced -- jerseys. They were always this itchy, wide-spread polyester mesh, never had TV numbers and usually used the cheapest screen printing possible for the name and numbers. Eventually they switched to the same dazzle material that the other companies were using, but the inaccuracy of TV numbers (either misplaced or absent entirely) remained a mainstay until Reebok took over (of note, Reebok has sold Logo 7-esque jerseys at times in its run, usually at Walmart and at a much cheaper price than an "official" NFL replica).
This was my first Eagles jersey, and I know it was purchased in 1995, because that was Ricky Watters's first year with the team and the last year they wore this style of jersey (with the winged eagle logo, rather than the severed eagle head they currently use). Even as a Redskins fan, I loved those classic Eagles jerseys, and I really wish they'd use those as a throwback sometime, instead of those horrid 1930s jerseys they wore a few years ago.
I think most people remember Watters's Eagles career as a disappointment -- in part because of his unfortunate comments after short-arming a pass in a game -- but he actually topped 1,000 yards in each of his three seasons in Philadelphia. Hell, his average season in Philly was 1,200 yards and 10 touchdowns, which is pretty damn impressive. He went on to have three more 1,200-yard seasons in Seattle, before completely falling off and retiring in 2001.
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.