NFL may take a closer look at gloves

AP

In January, Hall of Fame receiver Jerry Rice said he used to put stickum on his gloves. Now that the gloves are so good that the stickum is already on them, the NFL may be talking a look at whether the built-in stickiness has gone too far.

“I think it’s time to go back and look at the gloves and see if, with what’s going on here with sports science in the past 10 years, if there isn’t too much of an advantage being gained,” recently-reinstalled Competition Committee chairman Rich McKay told Sam Farmer of the Los Angeles Times.

It sounds like it’s a look that’s long overdue.

“No one looks at those gloves,” Hall of Fame coach and legendary broadcaster John Madden told Farmer. “I saw them when I was at a meeting in Indy. They passed them around and somebody made the comment that, ‘Pretty soon, these gloves are going to be able to catch a ball without a hand in them.'”

Those gloves also may be able to throw the ball without a hand in them.

“You know something’s up when guys like Tom Brady and Kurt Warner and Peyton Manning are wearing gloves to throw a football,” former NFL quarterback and 2002 league MVP Rich Gannon told Farmer. “You’re starting to go, ‘Wait a second here. . . .’ Guys for years dreaded bad weather, cold weather, and they didn’t want to have anything that would take their hands off the football. Now guys are like, ‘These gloves are better than the human skin.'”

And to that many will say, “So what?” With the following of the sport dramatically enhanced by fantasy football, fans want to see passes caught, not dropped. And another Hall of Famer thinks one of the best catches in recent years wouldn’t have been possible without the gloves.

“You have to be careful about the way you analyze that play because you don’t want people calling you a hater or whatever,” Tim Brown told Farmer regarding last season’s three-fingered grab by Odell Beckham Jr. “But you can’t make that play without those kind of gloves. It’s just impossible.”

It will be impossible for the NFL to build on its momentum as the must-see sport if it reverses the advances that have occurred right under the league’s nose.

“I think if they took the gloves completely away from the guys, including the quarterbacks at this point, it would have a major impact on what the game looked like on the field,” former NFL receiver and Sunday Night Football analyst Cris Collinsworth told Farmer. “And not for the better. . . . Every Sunday we say, ‘Oh, my goodness! Look at that!’ That’s a good thing. It’s an entertainment business. Why not make it as entertaining as possible?”

By paying no attention to the development of gloves, the NFL has allowed the game to become as entertaining as it is. It would make no sense for the NFL to suddenly declare that it has allowed the gloves to go too far.

Nike, the company that pays the NFL a lot of money to make and market the gloves, would probably agree.

107 responses to “NFL may take a closer look at gloves

  1. All sports evolve. Hockey is using composite sticks and hi tech skates. We’re not playing with hickory sticks in golf and even steel shafts are moving out. Golf balls are making course length obsolete. Tech and the soccer ball ifself has evolved that sport. Everything has gotten bigger, faster, longer. Let the gloves evolve football to another level as well. NFL needs to keep pace with technology and work the rules with it rather than react to changes 10 years later.

  2. I don’t understand the opposition to the gloves. As long as defensive players are allowed to wear them too, I’m of the thinking technology that improves the fan experience and the game is a good thing.
    You can’t compare this to when stickum was used or offensive players spraying their uniforms with silicone.

  3. 8 game suspension for wearing gloves … Oh.. whats that you say ??? You only raped and pummeled a girl .. ok 2 game suspension … Fire the whole league office

  4. Clearly a false report. The NFL doesn’t operate like this. No, what they’re going to do is wait until a major playoff game, confiscate all the gloves of a team that is seen as too close to Kim Jong Goodell (let’s see, my guess is the Cowboys), measure them closely for how much stick-um they have, and then hire Ted Wells for a $6 million forensic investigation that concludes that the Cowboys have “more likely than not” been “generally aware” of a massive conspiracy to put excessive amounts of stick-em on their gloves, all while leaking stories to the media describing how those gloves basically had crazy glue on them. Everyone on the Cowboys will be suspended for 2 seasons, and Goodell will appoint himself the temporary owner of the Cowboys during that interim period.

  5. I see Gannon is still bitter about throwing a record 5 interceptions in his 1 super bowl game.

    Brady doesn’t use a glove on throwing hand in cold weather or any weather.
    I think he tried it and didn’t like it.
    Not sure about the other 2 QB’s he mentioned.

  6. The same gloves are available to everyone, so what’s the big deal? A competitive advantage only exists when one player has an advantage over another, as with PEDs. How would you police it anyway? Official glove inspectors?

  7. What about those cheating helmets? No way would players be able to take some of those hits without the competitive advantage they get from helmets.

  8. Oh yes, and ESPN legal expert Lester “Baghdad Bob” Munson will adamantly describe how brilliant the NFL’s legal filings are, and write approximately 37 columns wondering why Jerry Jones is even contesting these actions in a court of law, because the law is clearly on Kim Jong Goodell’s side. He will cite approximately 247 cases, most of which come from Equatorial Guinea and Laos, and 0 of which support his position.

  9. It’s not a competitive advantage if everyone wears the same gloves. Last I checked, everyone has been wearing these gloves for years and yet no one else has made a catch like Odell’s. If everyone could do it, then we would be seeing 3 fingered one handed catches every week.

  10. milehipigskin says:
    Aug 30, 2015 10:52 AM
    If they don’t care about the gloves, then who cares about the PSI either? Same thing.

    ————————

    Not even close to the same thing. Offensive and defensive players both wear gloves to help themselves and it is legal. Deflating footballs is not done by most teams, the defense cannot also do it, and it is illegal.

  11. If everyone is doing it, and it’s allowed, then it seems fine.

    But how is “everyone is using super-gloves” different than “everyone is using PEDs” in some sports? Either everything is a threat to the so-called integrity of a sport, or nothing is.

  12. I wonder if gloves will evolve to something like a first baseman’s mitt or even a fielder’s glove with webbing. Curious if it is against the rules now to have webbing and how big the “basket” can be.

    I don’t like the idea of webbing but I do prefer catches to drops.

  13. This is why it amuses me when people say Lester Hayes “cheated” by using stickum. If it’s legal, and every player who wants to use it can use it, then it’s not cheating. By some accounts today’s gloves are even more effective than stickum, which is pretty amazing.

  14. Right. I think what’s missing from the NFL is more dropped balls. Nothing excites the fans like a guy almost catching a pass.

  15. What’s with ex-hack QBs having to demean Brady every time a microphone gets thrust in their face. Brady doesn’t wear a glove on his throwing hand, Rich. The jealousy of the league is sad.

  16. But let a little air out of a ball, or rather, be accused of a general awareness of a little air being let out of a ball…

    Really makes you wonder what the deflate gate witch hunt is all about, doesn’t it?

  17. Aug 30, 2015 10:51 AM – greengoldandbold says: You can’t compare this to when stickum was used or offensive players spraying their uniforms with silicone.

    Not like stickum, which gets on the ball, but exactly like silicone. If all players can do it, why not?

  18. Am I the only one that finds dropped balls and fumbles more exciting than unrealistic catches?
    I liked the “Old School” football way more than the flash and glam nonsense of today.
    I like defense and low-scoring games. I don’t need to see all of the teams score 40 points per game.
    I think that domes are for soft teams.
    Get rid of the gloves! Get rid of the Glam! And for God’s sake….Get rid of Goodell!

  19. Actually there is alot of design variations with the gloves and glove manufacturers are all looking for ways to improve performance in wet and cold. So no – they are not all the same. Some are better than others.

  20. .
    Wasn’t Rich Gannon the Raiders QB who spit the bit during the famed 2001 Snow Bowl game in New England? Hasn’t he blamed everyone including Tom Brady, Walt Coleman, and Bill Belichick for the loss? He refuses to accept the fact that without his choke job, there is no game winning FG by Adam Vinitieri.
    .

  21. All these so called experts with facts that are wrong. Brady has never used a glove for his throwing hand. Only on his left…. Minor details right?! This dude is always going to get lumped in with stuff. If I were him, I’d say screw it and retire with his 4 rings and boats loads of money

  22. TheMorningStar says:
    Aug 30, 2015 10:42 AM
    Simply no way Beckum makes that catch without wearing those cheat gloves.
    ——————————————–
    That, and as we all know, Eli likes his balls a bit deflated too.

  23. I hate everything the league does, because it’s popular to do so and I have trouble with comprehending perspectives outside of my own.

    -most fans

  24. Just another reason we shouldn’t declare these modern day players with the video game stats as the best ever because they have thrown for 50 TDs and 5000 yards . Add in the favorable rule changes for the offenses and its no wonder the really good QBs look like the best ever .

  25. Nike, the company that pays the NFL a lot of money to make and market the gloves, would probably agree.
    ————————————–

    And that’s the thing isn’t it? There’s no money being made by deflating footballs, or peds, etc.

    Always follow the money

  26. If all WRs can wear the gloves, then it’s an equal playing field for them and the best remain the best.
    That stinks for corners and safeties, but the NFL doesn’t care much for defense anyhow.
    As for the integrity of the game, what does that even mean? This isn’t baseball. Technology has dramatically affected this game, including in the way the athletes are able to protect themselves.

  27. Had the league office not pissed all over their shoes on the Brady thing, this would barely be a footnote.

  28. We spend so much time and money into watching football because it’s entertaining right? A guy jumping 5 ft into the air and grabbing a football with one hand is entertaining right? I don’t see the problem.

  29. They call then “skill position” players. There is no skill in catching a ball with gloves on. Catch a ball when it is thrown hard, while it is raining / snowing or even with one hand without gloves on, and Ill call that a skill.

  30. I want to be hired as the official glove inspector for the NFL. About $5,000,000 a year would suffice.
    Wait until they put laser tracking devices in the footballs and gloves. The gloves would send a signal when the ball is on target and when to adjust to the flight path. The QB would just need to throw to an area and the receivers would track it down. Technology is the future…

  31. There is nothing wrong with the gloves if everyone is wearing them. It it still an even playing field if the QB, WR, and DBs all have access to the same gloves. The integrity of the game is still intact. To say that it’s not is like saying the environment ally controlled dome stadiums compromise the integrity of the game. Leave the gloves on. WRs are still dropping passes with them on anyway.

  32. Everyone has access. No advantage. What should be considered is records set since the advent of the gloves. Guys are obviously making catches with the gloves that would be impossible without the gloves.

    One thing that could be an advantage is quarterbacks using the gloves. That is a deal where some guys need the gloves, while other players can’t throw with the glove. There is some advantage to the player who can use them.

  33. “No one looks at those gloves,” Hall of Fame coach and legendary broadcaster John Madden told Farmer. “I saw them when I was at a meeting in Indy. They passed them around and somebody made the comment that, ‘Pretty soon, these gloves are going to be able to catch a ball without a hand in them.’”..

    All this and more from a coach that had 55 gallon vats of stick-um lined up on the Raider sideline…

  34. I will scrorn and defend Brady: he doesn’t wear a glove on his throwing hand and PSI tampering is against the rules, so comparing thetwo scenarios is silly. As for the gloves, they are available for everyone, so no rules are broken (yet).

  35. TheMorningStar says:
    Aug 30, 2015 10:42 AM
    Simply no way Beckum makes that catch without wearing those cheat gloves.

    ——-

    So now we’re expanding the definition for cheating? Wearing gloves that are not banned by the league and is used by a significant number of pass catchers in the league is now cheating. Got it.

  36. Gloves, domestic abuse, other crime, stick ’em, artificial stadium noise, texting from press box, Jets tampering with Revis and their first tampering “rodeo”, etc. – all no big deals to misdemeanors with league.

    Bountygate and Deflategate totally different in league’s eyes – talk about arbitrary and capricious.

    You know Tom Brady was generally aware of something so he must endure this mess while Roger had to be generally aware of the Chris Carter/Warren Sapp video and will likely collect another $25M-$50M this year.

    Fans of other teams – except the Jets obviously given Roger’s, Kensil’s etc. biases – better wake up before it’s their team’s turn to deal with Roger and the gang who cannot shoot straight. Out of control power, bad judgment, lack of fairness and outright stupidity is a toxic mix.

  37. I don’t know about catching a pass from a professional QB like Aaron Rodgers, RGIII, Alex Smith, or Geno Smith….

    However when wearing my NFL WR gloves while tailgating I NEVER drop my beer.

  38. And the collective hearts of Viking fans just skipped a beat. Maybe Bridgewater can get a therapeutic use exemption from the league with a doctors note for those tiny hands.

  39. If Beckham only caught that pass because of those gloves, why don’t we see catches like that in every game? Is it possible that the guy is better at his “job” than many of the other receivers in the NFL? Not saying that the gloves made no difference, but his natural abilities had a lot to do with that catch as well.

  40. Brady does not wear a glove on his throwing hand for a significant part of the season. He may occasionally don a glove to throw in extreme cold or cold with rain. I find it amusing that certain tweeks to equipment are found to be no big thing, but in the case of having ball pressure a little under or over, that isnt considered good for the game or help in the entertainment value!?

  41. TheMorningStar says:
    Aug 30, 2015 10:42 AM
    Simply no way Beckum makes that catch without wearing those cheat gloves.
    —————
    I won’t say that Beckum couldn’t make that catch without gloves but I think they greatly enhanced his chance. What he did is nothing new just look at any John Jefferson highlight. Jefferson made catches like that on regular basis, without gloves.

    Nevertheless I think we are all missing the point here. When the NFL says they are going to take a closer look at gloves, they mean that they are trying to figure out why they are not getting paid for the players to wear them.

    Think about it. If any of these glove makers were paying tribute that would mean “NFL” standards are already in place and there would be no need to look at them.

  42. Brady must have pissed all of the NFL off. What a guy, dude wears the glove on his non-throwing hand, yet he is being accused of having better numbers because of the glove.

  43. pensfan1 says:
    Aug 30, 2015 10:46 AM
    All sports evolve. Hockey is using composite sticks and hi tech skates. We’re not playing with hickory sticks in golf and even steel shafts are moving out. Golf balls are making course length obsolete. Tech and the soccer ball ifself has evolved that sport. Everything has gotten bigger, faster, longer. Let the gloves evolve football to another level as well. NFL needs to keep pace with technology and work the rules with it rather than react to changes 10 years later.
    =======================================

    Golf, at least on the PGA tour, bans certain drivers because they’ve deemed the clubs to be too springy. Olympic swimming and speed skating have banned certain suits. Sports accept technology advances but rightfully ban them when they give too much of a competitive edge.

  44. Tony Romo, the #1 rated passer in 2014, does not wear gloves. Even with temps in the teens. He plays with broken ribs and punctured lungs. He’s the true 2014 NFL MVP.

  45. No glove, no (fan or TV) love!

    If they spent half the time on stupid crap like this and more on helmet and joint safety the game would be a lot better off

  46. As I recall, the reason stickum was banned was not because it was a competitive advantage. It was banned because it was making a mess of the footballs and uniforms.

    Why would the NFL care if gloves make the ball easier to catch? That’s a good thing, right?

  47. If you need less skill to catch the balls because the gloves has them stick to your hands what are we we watching every week? Manufactured football players and games? Where is the authentiic skill, it’s approaching WWF. Get rid of the stickem on the gloves, let the players keep their hands warm like the gloves were supposed to.

  48. Of course the NFL and Goodell will start inspecting gloves at half time during the Pat’s next AFC championship game.

  49. Anyone who has caught a football with gloves and without know beyond a shadow of a doubt that gloves make it a lot easier to catch a football.

    I think the big question now is whether all gloves are equal. As technology advances glove designs and materials are improving exponentially. It completely unbalances the playing field if one teams gloves are significantly better than another’s.

    IMO -O Gloves can only remain IF the league standardizes gloves and inspects them before every game to make sure that players aren’t altering them. Remember Gerry Rice. Even that paragon of virtue bent the rules when it suited him. How many balls did he catch with that advantage on his side. What’s the real record for pass catching.

    In the drive to turn the NFL into the National Flag football League, one way back from the abyss that wouldn’t take changing rules or tampering with the essence of the game is to get rid of gloves entirely in any game where the temp. above 32….and even then only standardized league issued gloves.

    Offensive stats would suffer, probably around 10-15%, but at least we’d know that the team that won, what because they had the best equipment money could buy

  50. TheMorningStar says:
    Aug 30, 2015 10:42 AM
    Simply no way Beckum makes that catch without wearing those cheat gloves.———————————————————————————————————————
    With that catch, people began talking about Jerry Rice. Rice said he used stick-em. Beckum made a 3 toed grab with his shoe. Must be something about the stick-um.

  51. illegalact says:
    Aug 30, 2015 12:45 PM
    Brady does not wear a glove on his throwing hand for a significant part of the season. He may occasionally don a glove to throw in extreme cold or cold with rain. I find it amusing that certain tweeks to equipment are found to be no big thing, but in the case of having ball pressure a little under or over, that isnt considered good for the game or help in the entertainment value!?—————————————————————————————————-

    illegalact, just continue being amused, and oblivious.

    Why would any quarter back want to use a sticky, tacky glove on their throwing hand. It is about receiving the snap, fool

  52. It’s only an issue because Tom Brady wears gloves. Anyone else and well that’s what they prefer because it helps them do their job better. But not Tom Brady he wears them to cheat. Jerry Rice self professed stick um user. Who cares. Aaron Rodgers likes over inflated balls who cares. No one cares unless they can use it to try and discredit the Patriots.

  53. Gloves should be outlawed. I’ve seen receivers go up and catch footballs one handed, and everyone yells at what a great catch it was. Please. The gloves are like baseball gloves now. They’re making ridiculous catches with them. No one should be allowed to wear gloves unless you want to make an exception for extreme cold, and those should be low tech.

  54. Probably in the minority but I think they should get rid of gloves altogether. Let the athlete make the play, not the equipment.

  55. Stupid idea to mess with the gloves. It’s a fact of life that technology has made things far easier in almost every aspect of our life. What about golf? Does anyone really think those PGA tour players would bomb the ball the way they do without the equipment getting so much better? Drives over 300-330 consistently? 6&7 irons from 200-180 yards? Just relax and deal with it.

  56. If we want them to have these gloves because it makes for good entertainment, then lets have these guys juice up. Because you will see some amazing things as well while being juiced up. Look how popular baseball was during the juice years, the home run war between Sammy Sosa and Mark Mcguire. Rating were through the roof. Lets have the juice years in the NFL, if everyone takes them then its even ground, right?

  57. So, gloves that let middle age soccer moms make pro bowl level catches are legal.

    A half pound difference in PSI that more probably than not occurred naturally is a million dollar fine, a loss of a first round draft pick and a four game suspension for the QB that might have been generally aware of the thing that no one can prove happened.

  58. I’ll admit that if Brady just wears it on his non-throwing hand, he shouldn’t have been mentioned in this article, but to compare this to deflated footballs are just an attempt by the Pats faithful to connect his cheating with something completely different. The rules that were broken were documented rules that everyone was aware of. Brady knowingly took unfair advantage by having the equipment guys deflate the football. Two different scenarios to be sure!

  59. If they can all use them, what’s the difference? It doesn’t create a health risk or decrease player safety and because anyone can do it, it doesn’t create a competitive advantage to anyone.

    Same as the PSI issue. Let the QB’s use whatever PSI they want.

  60. In the modern NFL, anything that happened before the advent of the Super Bowl is irrelevant. All the stats of receivers who wore no gloves are now irrelevant as well.

  61. Why can’t the “sticky” anything be used ??? I say that if EVERY PLAYER is allowed to use it, then what is the harm ??????
    Is it because the fans don’t want to see great plays being made by players using the “sticky” anything ?
    As long as every player has the same advantage as any other player, I’d rather see those terrific plays instead of all those DROPPED FOOTBALLS.

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