Philadelphia Eagles: Kelly Green is officially coming back in 2023

(Photo by George Gojkovich/Getty Images)
(Photo by George Gojkovich/Getty Images) /

For the longest time, the wishlist of most longtime – see, older – Philadelphia Eagles fans went roughly as follows: 1. Win the Super Bowl. 2. Bring back Kelly Green uniforms, and 3. Sign a fullback.

Is there some wiggle room to that list? You bet, some wanted to see the Birds land a franchise cornerback, while others were enamored with the idea of finally getting Russell Wilson in an Eagles uniform, but if folks are being honest, the uniform in question they wanted to see, with Wilson over the number 3, was one bathed in the Kelly Green of old, instead of the midnight green monstrosities – their words, not mine – that the team adopted in 1996.

Unfortunately for that specific subset of fans, the closest you’ll get to a fullback is rewatching James Casey highlights from the 2013-14 season, but after watching the Eagles win a Super Bowl in February of 2018, number two on the list could be checked off as soon as August of 2023, or whenever Philly’s home opener will be.

Why? Because the Philadelphia Eagles(‘s social media team) have hinted at their return for the 2023 NFL season. After almost 30 years away with only a few “one night only” returns, Philly’s favorite color might be coming back on a semi-regular basis.

The NFL’s antiquated helmet rule was a bummer for the Philadelphia Eagles.

So why, you may ask, have the Philadelphia Eagles never been allowed to bring back Kelly Green as an alternate uniform color before, taking the place of the all-black unis they’ve worn since the Andy Reid era?

Four words: The NFL’s helmet rule.

That’s right, unlike in college, where teams like Oregon change their look up every single week, the NFL had a rule in place that basically forced each player to wear one helmet specifically tailored to their head for the entire season. Mind you, there were multiple helmets to choose from, as fans might recall from the Antonio Brown situation with the Raiders, but in order to feign an aura of added safety, the prospects of having two helmets molded to a player’s head was labeled too risky by some in the league office.

Could the Eagles have still gone forward with Kelly Green? You bet, but they would have been forced to stick with the same midnight green helmets that they wore with their home, away, and alternate black uniforms, which would have looked a bit weird, to put it mildly. While the team could have opted to go with a white helmet as their main look, which does have some historical significance over 88 years of the franchise’s history, that seemingly never piqued the internet of Jeffrey Lurie, which, in turn, made it a non-starter.

Instead, the now-Oscar winning owner petitioned the league to allow multiple helmets over the course of a season, and much like his proposed rule change to allow both teams to touch the ball in overtime, it passed last spring during the offseason meetings.

So why, you may also ask, aren’t the Eagles wearing Kelly Green this fall if they will be allowed an alternate helmet this fall? Well, unfortunately, the Eagles had already filed for black to be the color of their alternate uniform colors for the 2021 and 2022 seasons, and thus, they couldn’t switch it up to Kelly Green until 2023, when they were allowed to once again select a new alternate color.

Fortunately, the Eagles will still be able to put that additional helmet to good use, as, according to Eliot Shorr-Parks of 94 WIP, the team will go with a black helmet this fall that can presumably be interchanged with their green, white, and black uniforms as the team sees fit.

Not quite Kelly Green, but hey, it could be cool for a one-year stopgap.

Next. 25 is the year Josh Sweat becomes a star. dark

So there you go; after waiting 52 years for a parade down Broad, fans will only have to wait through one more season before the return of Kelly Green uniforms, which is way longer than it needed to be, but it’s still welcomed nonetheless. Now, the question becomes which jersey should one buy when they become available, and will Jason Kelce stick it out for one more season to earn a chance to wear the best uniform color in all of sports?