Why Don’t NFL Footballs Have White Stripes – The Real Reason

Have you ever wondered why don’t NFL footballs have white stripes? If this is a question of yours too, then read this full article because I have explained the answer just for you!

Before 2007, the NFL footballs used to be full white with no other colors. It did not have any marks too by which the balls can be distinguished.

But after the 2007 season, the NFL authority changed the color of the ball and brought some marks on it so that the ball can be easily distinguished.

But the information which can shock you is, that back in the time in the 1920s, all the featured NFL footballs used to have white stripes on them.

But in the year 1941, NFL authority changed the color of the stripes from white to black to make the ball more visible in the night games.

And now, NFL uses footballs with no white stripes because white football stripes could hamper the visibility of the ball in a fully-lighted stadium.

But there is a full history of changing the colors of the NFL footballs. Do you want to know it? Then dive into this article!

Also read: What Does Moss Mean In Football- A Detailed Overview

What Are The White Stripes On The Football Called?

Before I tell you the full history of changing the colors of the stripes of the NFL football, let me tell you what the official name of the white lines or stripes is on the NFL football. The stripes you see on the side of the footballs are called laces.

Generally, synthetic or legitimate leathers are used in making those laces. The balls which have these laces are costlier, but they are more durable too.

Does NFL Football Have Stripes?

Before answering this question, let me tell you that NCAA and NFL do not have the same specifications for football. It means the size and shape may vary.

If you ask me about college football, then the footballs used in the matches have white stripes on them. But if you ask me about NFL, then there are no white stripes on the footballs that are used in the matches.

Read More: Learn About The School Football Game

When Did NFL Remove The White Stripe From The Football?

Why doesn’t NFL football have stripes? This is probably the most searched question about stripes on NFL footballs.

In the 1920s, NFL color stripes used to be white in the matches. But in 1941, they introduced white balls with black stripes to bring an improvement in the visibility of the ball in night games.

In 1956, NFL introduced a new change in the design of the football.

They started using black-with-white striped footballs. But again in 1959, NFL started using footballs that had no distinguishing colors on them.

This change was made because the black players said that they are looking like robots because of the white football in a dark stadium.

When Did The NFL Change The Color Of The Ball?

The very first color of the football used to be leather color. But it was very costly, so the NFL decided to make it grass.

Then they changed the color to gray, and then again to black.

In the year 1984, NFL said that all the balls had to be made of synthetic materials. The rubber-made balls used to deteriorate very fast because throwing and kicking practices were increased.

But in the year 1987, the use of natural-fiber balls came back in NFL.

If you ask about today, there are many colleges as well as professional football players who use footballs that are neither black nor white. Some of them even use orange balls!

Read More: What Are Rubber Pellets On The Field

Why Do The Footballers Wear Black Stripes Under Their Eyes?

Have you ever heard of Eye Black? These are nothing but the black stripes that footballers put under their eyes. Now the question is, why do they put those black stripes under their eyes?

The black color absorbs all the lights. So during a match, the players put these black stripes under their eyes so that the black stripes can absorb the excessive light and the players can get a much more clear view even under low-light conditions.

The eye blacks help in distinguishing players too in international football. Each international football team uses a different color for the eye black stripes, which distinguishes them from the players of the opponent team.

Why Are NFL Footballs So Dark?

This is a question that haunts every NFL lover’s mind. Why are the NFL footballs so dark? Well, the answer lies in the process of making the balls.

When a brand new ball comes, the wax on it is rubbed off by a black brush for at least 45 minutes. This process darkens the color of the leather of the ball.

After this, the ball is rubbed by a piece of cloth that was dipped in water before until the outer surface of the cloth gets saturated completely. This whole process makes the NFL footballs even darker.

Frequently Asked Question

Q1. Why do quarterbacks tap their helmets?

This is a process for the quarterbacks to send an alert. If a quarterback wishes to change the play at the line of scrimmage, he uses his hand to tap his helmet and yells saying ‘alert’.

This is an indication that says the offense has changed the play.

Q2. What is the easiest position in the NFL?

The easiest position in the NFL probably is the RUNNING BACK. RUNNING BACK is a very easy skill that is even easier to master.

Q3. Why does the quarterback clap his hands?

The quarterbacks clap their hands when a team is right on the road. They do so because, in shotgun formations, it is harder to hear what a quarterback is saying.

Wrapping Up

There are so many NFL lovers who wanted to know why NFL footballs don’t have white stripes. That is why I wrote this article, just to let them know the answer to this much-asked question.

I hope this write-up of mine will help you to understand why there are no white stripes on NFL footballs. All the best!

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