The Best (and Worst) Uniforms in Steelers History

Donnie Druin

2020 has seen a handful of teams change their looks heading into this season, with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Atlanta Falcons emerging as the latest teams to score new uniforms. 

Of course, unveiling new uniforms comes with the risk of the public not reacting as planned. 

Although the Steelers have remained fairly identical to their ways for a majority of their existence, a handful of uniforms have come and gone that has caused heads in Pittsburgh to turn, for better or worse. To this day, block numbers on the jersey are more favored than the team's current italic number font, a change that was implemented in 1997. 

As consumers of the wonderful game of football, it's only natural to choose a favorite pair of threads. With a slick black and gold color scheme, the typical uniforms are perennial favorites for those in and outside the city of Pittsburgh. 

The good, bad, and ugly of Steelers' uniforms: 

The Good

Boz and Berry

Color Rush

The color rush uniforms originally debuted for the 2016 season and became a hit almost immediately. Black-on-black was something Steelers' fans craved for the longest time, and the gold block numbers help give the uniforms that extra little "pop". The thick gold stripe down the side of the pants provide a nice balance to the overall look, too. The best thing about these uniforms? The Steelers possess a 5-1 record while wearing those bad boys. 


Block-numbered throwbacks

If there was an alternate jersey more loved than the color rush, it's Pittsburgh's most recent pair of uniforms that has the Steel City raving. The aforementioned want from fans for the block numbers to return came true (well, partially) as the team debuted these throwback uniforms in 2019. With a nod to the teams of the 1970's, the block numbers+lettering and logo-less chest look incredibly sleek in a modernized fashion. A lot of fans will tell you they wouldn't be upset if the team reverted to these for full-time measures, and if any uniform were to replace the current ones, these would win in a landslide. 

The (not so) bad 

bumblebee lmao


Out of the entire catalog of uniform combinations for the Steelers, these may be the most debated. Half of the fan base loves the horizontal stripes, while the other half were incredibly happy these were put to rest following the 2016 season after making their debut in 2012 as an ode to 1934 team, originally named the Pirates after the baseball team. Over time, these have certainly grown on me. I can appreciate something different, and if they're going for accuracy, then the square numbers+ old school looking pants are legit

75th Anniversary

For the most part, these uniforms are liked among the fan base. Originally used to celebrate the team's 75th season, two things about the uniform have some fans weary on potentially donning them again. The white pants aren't necessarily a bad part of the uniform, however the gold helmet is the true divider between the two support groups (the thick stripe on the sleeve isn't exactly my favorite, either). There's a reason the team still refuses to wear these after stopping in 2011, although these are much preferred over the next two options. 

The Bad


I'll save my choice words for our last uniform. However, these "Batman" uniforms (nicknamed due to the costume similarities)  feature a gold triangle over the top of the jersey, making for quite the elementary school Microsoft paint project. When looking at the front of the jersey, it almost looks like a golden cape is draped over the player, which is just about the best we're able to do in the justification department. Get Adam West in one of these and call it a day. 

The Really Bad


You'll find no bigger fan of the city's crest than yours truly. I was willing to stick up for horizontal stripes, so maybe the vertical stripes can be vouched for. If we're going for historical accuracy, the plain black helmets certainly get the job done. 

However, when you combine all of those and also account for the white numbers on the upper part of the chest, you have Pittsburgh's worst throwback uniform... perhaps across all major sports in the city. Sometimes, it's just best to leave uniforms like these in the imagination. 

What's your favorite jersey in Steelers history? Let us know in the comments below.


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