We are long overdue for a post, and this post itself is a bit late. But I would be remiss if I did not address the NFL draft that occurred in Philadelphia a few weeks ago. Not only out of a love of menswear, but also as a matter of civic pride.
Being the loyal Philadelphian that I am, I will say that it was a great honor and opportunity for the city to host the draft. Fortunately, to my knowledge, things went well and Philadelphia shined as a suitable host for the occasion. As it has also recently done when hosting the DNC and the Pope. Hundreds of thousands of Philadelphians crowded the Benjamin Franklin Parkway the days leading up to the draft to check out the NFL Experience that the league put together. The night of the draft, tens of thousands of Philadelphians crowded the Parkway to watch the draft. The crowd was in great spirits, E-A-G-L-E-S chants permeated the air and fellow fans seemed to have an optimistic outlook for the coming season.
Now, onto the other topic at hand, the men’s style at the draft.
If you didn’t know, the level of sophistication of the way men dress in Philadelphia is disappointing, at best. And when you are referring to the attire at a sporting event the mark goes from disappointing to abysmal. But we’re not really here to talk about what everyone wore to the draft, we’re here to discuss what some of the athletes wore. Which, as you can imagine, varied greatly. I was fortunate enough to attend the draft, courtesy of JCPenney, who dressed a few of the athletes with its Collection by Michael Strahan. I was able to see a few of the ensembles from afar, but the photographs available online are much better than anything I was able to take. So let’s discuss.
First up we have the hometown favorite, Haason Reddick, from Temple University. Haason received by far the warmest reception of any player from the crowd as he sported Temple colors; which look great on him. However, it would have been nice if he wore a bowtie instead of a long necktie with the dinner jacket.
Garrett Bolles was the press favorite because he carried his son Kingston down the red carpet and on stage with him. Although Bolles was dressed in Collection by Michael Strahan, his son was not (at least as far as I know). He went for a classic conservative look that gives off a more professional and composed feel.
Derek Barnett came out strong in a deep red/light burgundy three piece suit. He did well by keeping everything else simple; brown shoes and white shirt. The fit is also pretty good, it can be really hard to fir guys that big. Given he was the Eagles pick, I look forward to seeing him around town but more importantly on the field crushing quarterbacks.
We are all fond of my distaste for black dress shirts. But Chidobe Awuzie almost makes it work in this peak lapeled Collection by Michael Strahan suit. He just needs to put the necklaces under the shirt and use a self-tied bow tie. He did get the fit down on the jacket, however.
Jamal Adams gave a clinic on how to wear white bucks. Although his suit is very aggressive, a double breasted white suit with a blue windowpane. A suit like this only works when the fit is good, which is fortunately the case here. Jamal paired the suit with a solid blue shirt which kept things simple. It even looks like he wore a blue watch strap to match. Tasteful extravagance, probably the best dressed gent of the night.
Again with the black shirts… But let’s focus on the liner of Deshaun Watson’s jacket, which features ‘815 Memo’ as a nod to where he grew up in Gainesville GA. This was a really great touch on the jacket from JCPenney and probably the most personal touch I saw on any ensemble that night. Very cool stuff.
It was great that the draft was held in Philadelphia and it was great to attend the draft. Obviously, for most fans the focus is on the picks. But for the select few of us, the focus was on the picks and the attire. It was good to see these young gentlemen take interest in what they wore on one of the biggest nights of their lives. Please feel free to sound off in the comments with your thoughts.