NFL players to Nike: “You make me look fat”

Punch line: After decades of wearing Reebok uniforms, NFL teams switched to Nike jerseys this year.  Nike introduced new tighter, sleeker uniforms, claiming enhanced performance, but some of the bigger linemen are asking the question, “Does this make me look fat?”

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Excerpted from WSJ’s, “The NFL’s 300-Pound Fashion Victims”

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Pondered in the NFL locker room this season, as some players try on their new tighter, sleeker Nike uniforms, is a question usually reserved for Nordstrom fitting lounges:

Does this make me look fat?

After a decade of wearing Reebok-made jerseys, NFL teams this year switched to Nike, which unveiled a new model that has what it calls a “body-contoured fit.

” While it looks great on Adonis-like players such as Arizona wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald and Miami running back Reggie Bush, it’s a bit less popular among those who are a bit more full-figured.

Tight jerseys are all the fashion in some sports.

How better to show off the sculpted physiques of NBA players?

Adidas even claims its tight Chelsea jersey “stabilizes and focuses the muscles’ energy.” 

Outfitting the NFL presents a range of problems—or rather, a problem of range.

Some receivers, running backs and kickers weigh less than 200 pounds. Linemen, meanwhile, routinely top 300. 

Making jerseys for lineman has become a bigger challenge in recent years.

The 1966 Green Bay Packers, winners of the first Super Bowl, did not feature an offensive lineman heavier than 250 pounds.

Today, the Packers’ five offensive line starters weigh an average of 312.8.

“We have 40 years of experience in the football business and the idea in our products is for optimal performance and we work with the athletes to find fit and function,” a Nike spokesman said. “The uniforms are available in a variety of sizes and cuts for different players with enhanced performance in mind.”

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