Earlier this offseason, the Twitter account NFL Leaks released a tweet that seemed to indicate the possible jersey colors for all 32 NFL teams during this year’s “Color Rush” alternate jersey program. The Color Rush idea was used last year in four Thursday Night Football games, including the Buffalo Bills and New York Jets facing off in a red versus green contest, the Tennessee Titans and Jacksonville Jaguars in blue versus something like gold, the Dallas Cowboys and Carolina Panthers wore white and blue respectively, and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and St. Louis (now Los Angeles) Rams in red and yellow. The 2016 Thursday night slate of games is expected include all Color Rush uniforms.
We discussed the previous NFL Leaks tweet, which included the Miami Dolphins wearing an orange uniform. As we said then, none of this is confirmed, but it does seem fairly accurate. It also makes sense for the Dolphins to return to an orange look. The Dolphins have four colors in their logo, aqua, orange (coral), white, and sea-blue; two of those are already primary uniform colors that the team uses, aqua and white. If the league wants to add an alternate type of uniform for the team, it would likely have to be orange or sea-blue. The Dolphins have had an orange look in the past, first using it in 2003 and then again in 2004, 2009, and 2010. The sea-blue color (look at the belly of the dolphin on the logo for an idea of that color) could be an option, but orange has already been seen, and fans seem to have enjoyed it. Orange makes the most sense.
Last week, NFL Leaks again sent out a tweet purported to show the Color Rush combinations for this year, and it again shows Miami in orange, but it does update the Cincinnati Bengals, Miami’s Thursday night opponent this season, to a black look instead of the previous black and white:
These, AFAIK, is the official and final design color sheet for NFL Color Rush. pic.twitter.com/4otQMyv9xN— NFL Leaks (@NFL_Leaks) June 17, 2016
The orange in the picture appears to be a little softer than the previous orange jerseys:
That could be just because it is on paper and a photo of that piece of paper, but it could also be a move to make the jersey more “coral” than orange. In describing the jersey combination, NFL Leaks actually used coral instead of orange as well, so either the person running the account is an old-school Dolphins fan when it was called coral, or the NFL is using coral as the official color:
Color Rush Week 4: Dolphins (Coral) vs Bengals (Black)— NFL Leaks (@NFL_Leaks) June 17, 2016
Some other interesting notes of the Color Rush uniforms includes the Cowboys and Minnesota Vikings each having two different uniforms, one for their regular Thursday night game and one for their Thanksgiving game. The Detroit Lions will wear red for Thanksgiving, which seems odd, but according to NFL Leaks, the Thanksgiving game Color Rush will be a “throwback” edition, and the Lions had a red uniform from 1948 to 1950. The league also learned from last year, when they used the red-green combination for the Jets and Bills, which caused complaints about color blindness issues; this year, the same match up will kick off the Color Rush games this year, but now the Jets will be wearing white instead of green.
One thing of note, the current NFL rules state that a player must use the same helmet throughout the year (unless it breaks), so teams cannot change helmets for alternate uniforms, which should also include the Color Rush uniforms. Theoretically, a team could use a wrap and cover the entire outside of the helmet to change the colors, but so far, that has not happened. The helmet rule has caused issues before, with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers cancelling a planned use of their “creamsicle” throwback uniforms in 2013 because they could not use the white helmets needed for the look compared to their current pewter helmets.
The Dolphins changed logos on their helmets last year to use their 1966 logo with the off-center dolphin, but they still used the same helmets so they did not violate the rule.
Last time we talked about the Color Rush uniforms, we included some fan inspired looks at what the Dolphins’ orange look could look like this time around. As you can see in the Jets-Bills pictures above, the Color Rush uniform consists of both the jersey itself and the pants, so Miami will likely be in all coral, rather than their typical white or aqua pants. Here are those fan-generated ideas for Miami’s Color Rush look this year:
(H/T to @survivor_no_1 for pointing out the updated tweet from NFL Leaks)