Let me start off by saying I understand fashion, but I’m not addicted to it in the least. For the games I call on Sunday Night and in the playoffs I wear a suit and tie. I guess it’s because I respect the NFL and as a player and a coach you wore suit and tie for road games. I understand it’s radio, but when I’m on the field pregame or in the press box I want to look like a pro. Be that as it may I was rearranging my wardrobe and really just moving some stuff around in my closet when I realized that about 10+ years ago, two-button suit jackets were in fashion. There was time when three-button, then four-button and even five- and six-button jackets were hip, fly, dapper… you get my drift.
I recently bought two new suits, both with two-button jackets. Actually, I bought one suit and the second suit was free. You know my guy, the one who tells us were going to like the way we look? Anyway, I know I could have bought a new three-button with a cool vest to wear underneath or a fashion-forward double-breasted suit. I didn’t get one of those super tight-fitting short jacket suits either. I just went with the classic two-button suits like I bought ten years ago. When I got the new suits home, one blue and one grey, I noticed that the classic blue two-button looked a lot like the classic blue two-button that I already had in my closet. Funny thing is that’s what we have this weekend in the AFC and NFC Championship Games.
In the AFC, we’ve got Tom Brady (now there’s a fashion guy) and Peyton Manning. Classic drop-back guys who never seem to go out of style. In the last two seasons, Manning got some new accessories – call it a new tie and some fancy cuff links aka Wes Welker, Thomas & Thomas and Eric Decker – and he looked as good as new. Tom Brady, on the other hand, went out and got a new pair of shoes. They were a little tight at first and Tom had a few words with the store clerk (aka his offensive coordinator), but after putting some mileage on the new receivers, he seems to have his old strut back.
Now over in the NFC, it’s all about what’s new. Before I left the store, the salesman made sure I had the right tie and shirt combo that would make the suit pop and everyone would take notice and be kept on their toes – kind of like that read option. He also suggested a pocket square. Kind of flashy, I know, but I can pull it out of the pocket in case of emergency. You see what I did there?
Now I’m having a hard time picking which I like better, the old or the new ones. I’m glad I kept the old suits and didn’t give them away the last time I cleaned out my closet. It’s always tempting to move on to the latest and greatest when styles change, but sometimes you also need to go back to the tried and true. I’ll wear both the old and the new a little longer and decide which I like better before the New York/New Jersey Super Bowl. Whatever happens this Sunday, it’ll be old versus new on February 2nd. I guarantee it.
– James Lofton
Pro Football Hall of Famer James Lofton is the analyst for WestwoodOne’s coverage of Sunday Night Football. This week, James will be in Seattle for the NFC Championship Game as the Seahawks host the San Francisco 49ers. Coverage of our Championship Sunday doubleheader begins with Broncos-Patriots in the AFC Championship at 2 PM Eastern.