INDIANAPOLIS —The Indianapolis Colts will do something on Thursday night they've never done before.
The players will be sporting blue-on-blue (on blue…on blue) when they take the field at Lucas Oil Stadium to face the Denver Broncos on Thursday Night Football. The Colts' white helmets will be the only part of the uniforms that aren't in line with the team's Color Rush theme, as its blue jerseys, pants, socks and cleats are expected to create quite the on-field visual up against the Broncos' all-orange look.
A fun sneak peak at the Colts Color Rush uniforms that they will wear Thursday night against the Broncos.
"I can't wait," Colts wide receiver T.Y. Hilton said on Monday. "It's our first time in all-blue, so I really can't wait to see it."
The Colts' Color Rush uniforms were actually unveiled prior to the 2016 season, but because their Thursday game fell on Thanksgiving last year, the team was able to defer wearing the all-blue look to this season.
Since joining the National Football League as the Baltimore Colts in 1953, the team's overall look has changed very little. The Colts added gray pants to wear with their blue jerseys from 1982 to 1987, and in 1995 the team wore blue pants with its white jerseys for three games. Thursday's game will mark the Colts' first-ever blue-on-blue look, however.
"That will definitely be cool," rookie cornerback Quincy Wilson said. "All-blue is gonna be real nice out there. I'm ready to make some plays in that all-blue."
The NFL's Color Rush theme began in 2015 and has been met with mixed reviews from fans, players and the clubs themselves. While some love their monochromatic look, others aren't impressed; some teams have even flat-out refused to participate (the Washington Redskins went so far as to propose eliminating Color Rush at the NFL's annual meetings last year, but later withdrew their proposal before it had a chance to be voted on).
Colts safety Darius Butler has certainly been paying attention to the styles of other teams who have played on Thursday night, and says he likes the look — well, *most *of them.
Color Rush Uniform Shoot - BEHIND THE SCENES
"I've liked most of them that I've seen," said Butler, who has two career interceptions against the Broncos. "There a couple terrible colors and looking ones, but ours with the blue will look sharp and I'm looking forward to wearing them."
Cornerback Nate Hairston, meanwhile, appreciates the chance for teams league-wide to mix it up a little bit, even if some of the uniforms might be perceived as tacky.
"They look nice, man," the rookie said. "It's cool. I'd see it on TV and always wanted to be a part of it, so I'll get my chance on Thursday. I like all of them. They look so unique and there's so much color. I like all of them."
Not too far removed from his college days, running back Marlon Mack said the Colts' digs on Thursday bring back memories of his days at South Florida, which, like most college programs, takes advantage of their uniform freedom to utilize many different combinations of helmets, jerseys and pants each season.
"It's going to be like back in college where you get to choose uniforms — all different kinds of uniforms," Mack said after sporting all-white during a blizzard in Buffalo last weekend. "It's great. I like the blue so it's going to be great doing the blue-on-blue once."
This is the second time in three weeks the Colts have been able to make a statement of sorts through various aspects of their uniform, which is typically one of the more regulated items on the field by the NFL.
At least one Indy veteran appreciates the efforts.
"It makes it more fun," sad Hilton, who wore custom-designed cleats promoting Fathers and Families, a local group in Indianapolis focused on strengthening local families through education, employment and support, back in Week 13. "You get to have your cause on your cleats, and with Color Rush, everybody loves the uniforms. It's going to be our first time, so I'm looking forward to it."
Here's some more info on the Color Rush uniforms on Thursday night:
• The Nike Royal Vapor Untouchable uniforms are designed to move faster and are the lightest Nike uniform ever produced, by four ounces.
• The jerseys and pants for both teams have been reduced from 36 panels to 10 panels, eliminating seams for a better fit and a harder-to-grab surface for defenders, which is deemed "flow vortex" by Nike.
• The Colts' blue jerseys will have a white number font reminiscent of the one utilized by the team in the late-1950s into the 1960s.
• For the second time, the Broncos will be wearing all-orange jerseys, pants, socks and cleats, with a navy blue helmet featuring a throwback decal of a snorting bronco coming out of the negative space of the letter 'D.' The team first wore this combination in its 21-13 road loss to the San Diego Chargers in Week 6 last season.