NFL Draft Fashion Scorecard


Is it possible that the last red carpet, which is really a place of self-expression rather than the fashion marketing of big brands, belongs to Turkey? NFL draft?

Judging by the entries from the athletes on day 1 of the draft in Las Vegas, it looked so. It was like a wake-up call: Do you remember when? Remember when celebrities dressed for themselves? Remember when they took risks and showed their personality with their clothes? Remember when you never knew exactly what you were going to get because everything was not contractually predetermined months ago?

Sure, there were some bright, global names that were represented and repeated on the cascade by the Bellagio fountains—the kind that dominate shopping streets and awards ceremonies everywhere. But they faded into the background against the storytelling experienced in draft class attire: bright, Easter egg colors; Details; giant bling pieces.

As athletes increasingly dive into the world of personal branding (hello, Tom Brady) for post-sport or parallel sports careers, head-to-toe self-shaping has practically become an art form in its own right. And it starts in the draft.

Therefore, besides the actual ranking of the first choices, a shadow fashion ranking has developed more and more; cf. various NFL draft fashion braces. It’s not just about nighttime attention. It’s about setting a tone and laying the groundwork for the future.

(Also, perhaps providing an alternative future, if something fully working on the field.)

There was the 26th-choice Jermaine Johnson II, covered in the logos of teams from high school to junior high and college, in a gold jacket splashed with wavy lines of black flowers like a giant gilded lily spotted with Rorschach. She had helped him go to Vegas.

Ikem Ekwonu finished sixth in a white suit with green and white stripes on a collar and cuffs, reflecting his family’s Nigerian roots.

And Ahmed “Sauce” Gardner finished fourth, a light blue color with two huge necklaces ringing around his neck, one dangling something very similar to a sparkly Tabasco sauce bottle, the other reading “Sauce.” In case anyone doesn’t know who they’re looking at.

Alongside Kayvon Thibodeaux in a black Dolce & Gabbana tuxedo adorned with ruby ​​crystals and finished with a bow tie, and Matt Corral in a royal blue Brioni, the brand name drop was limited to the lower part, which is probably a coincidence, namely shoes. , but it also seemed quite appropriate, the ranking given was the theme of the night.

For example, pay attention to Mr. Gardner’s studded Christian Louboutin sneakers; Garrett Wilson’s giant lug-soled Prada boots, paired with a two-tone gray and white suit and multiple pearl necklaces, like the Harry Styles of football; The bright red and white Vuitton kicks chosen to match Jameson Williams’ bright red suit, white shirt and Olympic medal-sized locket; and Nakobe Dean’s white McQueens, which she wore in a pale pink suit, a white leather shoulder strap, and a wide-brimmed brown fedora, with an equally slanted, matching blush pink ribbon.

While his name wasn’t called in the first round, it’s a look that makes it memorable.


After all, if the goal is to strengthen your achievements and name recognition to stand out in the lifestyle arena after setting many other goals, creating an individual, identifiable look is key. It’s not about being an ambassador for an established fashion brand (but fashion can try to seduce football more broadly, as with basketball and football); it’s about building your own brand. That means you don’t want to let another designer define you. You want to define yourself.

This means that the draft is not just the moment when a new class of potential professional sports stars emerge; This is where their branding begins.


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