NFL Nation: Georgia Frontiere

The late St. Louis Rams owner Georgia Frontiere, astrologically inclined as she was, might have said the planets aligned for this blog entry.

How else to explain such freakish timing?

With's ongoing power rankings series focusing on helmets later Tuesday, I decided to visit the UniWatch blog to see whether those concerned with "the obsessive study of uniform aesthetics" might have anything to say on the matter.

By dumb luck, the blog was currently leading with an interview featuring helmet- and uniform-related reflections from longtime Rams equipment manager Todd Hewitt. The interview, which originally appeared at, is a fascinating read for any Rams fan or anyone interested in football lore.

I'll break out a few highlights below, but please do check out the full transcript. Great stuff. Among the revelations:

    [+] EnlargeMerlin Olsen
    Focus on Sport/Getty ImagesMerlin Olsen and the Rams used to sport blue-and-white uniforms since they showed better on black-and-white TV.
  • The team used only Riddell helmets for years because Hewitt's father knew John Riddell. But Dennis Harrah had other ideas.
  • At one point, the Rams settled on a certain shade of yellow they liked, but then-owner Dan Reeves forced a change upon learning the color carried a sissified name -- "buttercup" yellow.
  • The Rams considered 15-20 color combinations when changing uniforms in 2000. Frontiere went with "new century gold" and "millennium blue" because the combination "made cosmic sense" entering the 21st century, even though she thought other colors looked better.
  • The team favored blue-and-white uniforms, without gold, beginning in the 1960s because the combination reproduced better on black-and-white TV.
  • Carroll Rosenbloom had an eye toward Hollywood when pushing to incorporate gold after taking over the team in 1972.
  • The team has never, ever considered removing the iconic horns from its helmets. Hewitt and his father had been the only ones to apply the helmet decals since the team went away from painted horns nearly 40 years ago. That is changing now that Hewitt no longer works for the team.
  • Former coach Ray Malavasi favored white jerseys at home because he thought they made players look bigger. Comfortable pants were a higher priority for former coach John Robinson. Mike Martz loved white uniform pants, but team exec John Shaw hated them (not that the Rams went through any front-office turmoil during those years).

I listed the Rams' helmets among the top five in the NFL in balloting for the power rankings, which ran on Bill Williamson's AFC West blog Tuesday.
The St. Louis Rams have announced Stan Kroenke's approval as majority owner without specifying how the arrangement complies with NFL rules on cross-ownership.

The news release reads in part, "Kroenke currently is the owner of the Colorado Avalanche (NHL), Denver Nuggets (NBA), the Colorado Rapids (MLS) and the Colorado Mammoth (NLL). He is also the largest shareholder of Arsenal FC of the English Premier League."

I've requested clarification from the league. Kroenke is expected to transfer ownership of the Nuggets and Avalanche to his son, Josh, according to Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

The bottom line for Rams fans: The team now has an owner with deeper pockets and a proven record of success when controlling sports franchises. The move should excite Rams fans. The current leadership should be excited and anxious at the same time. It's unclear what Kroenke might think about general manager Billy Devaney, coach Steve Spagnuolo or executive vice president Kevin Demoff.

Kroenke has surely been watching closely as Rams minority owner. To my knowledge, though, he has had very little direct contact with the Rams' current football leadership. I would expect few changes this season because there simply isn't enough time before the opener to consider significant moves.

It's a safe bet, though, that Kroenke will put his stamp on the team during the next offseason. At the very least, the current regime needs to win a few games and provide evidence that Sam Bradford was the right choice with the first overall choice in the 2010 draft.

The Rams provided a chart showing a year-by-year accounting of their majority owners. Some of the years overlap. I divided the seasons this way when putting together won-lost records for each ownership regime: The 1937 through 1941 season records went to Homer Marshman; the 1942 through 1972 seasons went to Dan Reeves; the 1973 through 1979 seasons went to Carroll Rosenbloom; the 1980 through 2008 seasons went to Georgia Frontiere; and the past two seasons went to Chip Rosenbloom.

Posted by's Mike Sando

Gregory Cowles of the New York Times Book Review offers high praise for David Harris' book on former 49ers coach Bill Walsh. "How Bill Walsh Reinvented Football and Created an NFL Dynasty" spans 385 pages.

Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic breaks out his Flash Player to break down the Dolphins-Cardinals game in Week 2.

Also from Somers: a look at apparent attempts to spur trade talk involving Anquan Boldin. Somers offers a big yawn.

Scott Allen of predicts a 31-21 Cardinals victory over the Dolphins.

Mike Tulumello of the East Valley Tribune also brushes off the Boldin story line, relegating it to third-item status in his notebook.

Darren Urban of found a man who has attended each of the 200 exhibition and regular-season home games in Arizona Cardinals history.

Also from Urban: the Cardinals' emphasis on protecting the ball.

And this: Former Cardinals, Lions and Raiders linebacker Rob Fredrickson is the honorary alumni captain for Arizona's home opener. Fredrickson started 119 career games.

Jose Romero of the Seattle Times says the Seahawks' Lofa Tatupu gets fluid drained from his knee to help him play in games.

Clare Farnsworth of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer says only three offensive starters return from Seattle's victory over the 49ers in Week 4 last season. They are Matt Hasselbeck, Walter Jones and Chris Spencer. WOW.

Also from Farnsworth: all hands on deck for Seattle, even though Marcus Trufant and Tatupu have only two healthy ones between them.

And this from Farnsworth: he's picking a 17-9 victory for Seattle. Take that to the training room, not the bank.

Also from Romero: Bobby Engram says the Seahawks will be fine even though injuries are testing their resolve.

Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee assesses the 49ers pass rushers who got away, including Julian Peterson.

Also from Barrows: Will Seahawks coach Mike Holmgren wind up with the 49ers at some point in the future?

Bernie Miklasz of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch says the Rams should pipe down about not getting enough respect. He calls out Jonathan Wade for encouraging Marc Bulger to brush off reporters.

Deb Peterson of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch says the Rams will pay tribute to late owner Georgia Frontiere at their home opener.

Jeff Gordon of says Bulger is feeling the heat from all angles.

Steve Korte of the Belleville News-Democrat says the Rams want to get Torry Holt more inovled in the offense. One catch for 9 yards apparently isn't enough.

Bill Coats of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch assesses the impact of Leonard Little's injury. Rams rookie Chris Long will move to left end, a significant adjustment.

Tom FitzGerald of the San Francisco Chronicle says injuries could make the Seahawks vulnerable against the 49ers.

David Fucillo of breaks down the 49ers-Seahawks matchups with an eye toward injuries. Additional breakdowns here.

Dan Brown of 49ers Hot Read is still waiting for the 49ers' first interception of the season. The team didn't pick off a pass in preseason or the regular-season opener, a span of 147 pass attempts.




Thursday, 9/18
Sunday, 9/21
Monday, 9/22