The Atlanta Falcons have a tough choice to make in selecting their jersey color for Super Bowl 51. Do they stick with red or play the numbers wearing white?
By way of rotation, the Atlanta Falcons are the home team for Super Bowl 51. That means the Falcons have their choice of jersey color, a decision more complicated than some may think. Atlanta must take into account the merchandising involved with the Super Bowl. Superstitions may also weigh in on the decision.
The Case to Wear White
The Atlanta Falcons would have history on their side if they take the field wearing white jerseys on February 5th. Chris Creamer wrote an outstanding article in support of Super Bowl teams wearing white just prior to Super Bowl XLVIII. “…over the entire history of the Super Bowl the team in white has won 62% the time,” wrote Creamer. That number has since increased as the Seahawks (2014), Patriots (2015), and Broncos (2016), all won their last Super Bowl titles wearing white. That gives the white jersey an all-time record of 32-18 in 50 games played.
ESPN’s Paul Lukas speculated last January that the Broncos may have opted to wear white “out of superstition”. An understandable move considering they are 0-4 lifetime while wearing orange in the big game. Lukas also mentioned “white jerseys have won 10 of the past 11 Super Bowls”, a statistic that has since improved to 11 of the past 12.
The Case to Wear Red
The Atlanta Falcons won plenty of games in red jerseys this season, to include playoff wins over Seattle and Green Bay. Granted, Houston isn’t technically “home” for the Falcons, but we can expect them to take the field that day as if they own it. And wouldn’t it be just like Dan Quinn to blow-off history and look to break the current white jersey streak? I highly doubt Quinn cares much that only five teams in the history of the Super Bowl have won in red tops.
The last team to win wearing red jerseys were the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2003.
I personally prefer the Falcons in red jerseys come “Super Sunday” because team identity is important. Red is one of the franchise’s primary colors and the most popular when it comes to team apparel. Look into the Georgia Dome stands during any Falcons game and the color red dominates. Now image the sea of red packing in NRG Stadium on February 5th.
The majority of followers at the Blogging Dirty Facebook page have commented that the Falcons should actually consider black jerseys. Opting for black would mean the Falcons don their 1960’ish throwback uniforms worn during Weeks 7 and 15 this season. It seems extremely unlikely, but still a fun thought. I was always bigger fan of the Falcons wearing black at home. To date, only the 1995 San Francisco 49ers have worn an alternate uniform in the Super Bowl.
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The Patriots are currently 2-1 in wearing white jerseys. They wore white in their last two Super Bowl wins, following a 2-2 record in blue. Of course the Falcons wore black jerseys in their one and only Super Bowl appearance.