You’re all set up on the couch watching the game, surrounded by snacks and beverages, perhaps directing a futile yell towards the referee or players…and what are you wearing? Well, one of your NFL jerseys, of course.
Fans have been pulling on jerseys to attend games and watch games from home forever. However, when you’re making the decision to acquire another jersey, it can be difficult to select one. The jersey store or online site sell the jerseys of countless teams. Even if you’re a die hard supporter of one particular team, it can be difficult to choose which player out of all available options you want to represent on your back.
Given the indecision football fans often experience when attempting to decide what jerseys to add to their collection, it’s a great peek into the public’s mind to see which are the best sellers at any particular time. There are some players that are old classics – regardless of what team they’re on, or how they’re performing, people will buy jerseys with their names on them. They’re future Hall of Famers, they’re beloved, they're basically NFL royalty. There are other players who may gain popularity at certain periods of time due to external factors – for example, coming off of a Super Bowl win, recently getting traded, having an incredible season, etc. Finally, there are buzz-influenced jerseys, often rookies and newly drafted players, that fans buy to jump on the bandwagon and hopefully show their support for the next NFL superstar.
How can you figure out which jerseys in particular are flying off the shelves? Well, you could be weird and follow people around for days at your local jersey shop…or you could just check nflshop.com. The website, which boasts all kinds of sports merchandise, has provided a list of the best selling player jerseys from April 1 to July 17, 2014. This list gives you the top 15 and looks at why they might be so hot right now.
15 Dez Bryant – WR, Dallas Cowboys
Bryant finished the previous season with career highs in both catches (93) and touchdowns (13). He also went to his first Pro Bowl in four seasons. However, his jersey’s popularity doesn’t really seem to be tied to any particular event. Simply put, he’s an incredible wide receiver and he has his fair share of fans because Cowboys fans are dedicated and apparently desirous of wearing 88 on their back.
14 Adrian Peterson – RB, Minnesota Vikings
Though it was a little while ago, no football fan can forget Peterson’s MVP year. The purple-clad marvel has won countless awards and broken numerous records. He averages over 1,400 yards per season and is still going strong. Even men wary of wearing purple are willing to rep Peterson on game day. Though he’s no longer the undisputed number one fantasy pick as he was a little while ago, he’s certainly an amazing player and worthy of a jersey purchase.
13 Teddy Bridgewater – QB, Minnesota Vikings
Drumroll…the first rookie enters the best-selling building. Teddy Bridgewater was drafted in the first round by the Minnesota Vikings in the recent 2014 NFL Draft. There has been buzz about him for quite some time, with many expressing the opinion that he would have been snatched up very early had he went into the 2013 Draft, if not first (had he been eligible). The determined Vikings traded their second and fourth round picks in order to snag Bridgewater, who they signed to a 4 year contract worth $6.85 million, complete with a $3.3 million signing bonus. That kind of cash could buy a lot of jerseys.
12 LeSean McCoy – RB, Philadelphia Eagles
McCoy led the NFL with 1,607 rushing yards last season and seems to be getting better and better. If fans need proof, they can turn to the video McCoy recently posted of himself training by tossing 45 lb weights as if they were frisbees. He’s in phenomenal shape and he’s amazing at what he does. There’s no reason he won’t surpass even his own impressive performances in this upcoming season, and fans apparently want to watch him while wearing his jersey.
11 Marshawn Lynch - RB, Seattle Seahawks
Everyone wants a little bit of Beast Mode. Given their recent Super Bowl win, it’s no surprise that the top 15 best selling jerseys right now contain several Seahawks players. Perhaps Lynch is also a bit higher on everyone’s radar because of his recent hold out, which ended in a victory for him as the Seahawks bumped up his base salary and agreed to not enforce the fines they were allowed to dock him for not reporting to camp. Let’s just hope he doesn’t get in touch with nflshop.com to negotiate a higher jersey price…
10 12th Fan - Seattle Seahawks
Seattle Seahawks fans are notoriously devoted. With a recent Super Bowl victory to keep in mind for the upcoming season, it’s no surprise that one of the best selling jerseys right now is the 12th Fan jersey. Perhaps having scooped up Marshawn Lynch and Russell Wilson jerseys, fans want a little something that includes them. Or perhaps a new Seahawks fan is having trouble deciding between illustrious players and finds the 12th Fan an easier choice to make. Regardless, Seahawks fans are showing their love for their team and their appreciation for the 12th man tradition by buying this jersey in (apparently) large quantities.
9 Aaron Rodgers – QB, Green Bay Packers
The quarterback on a team is generally one of the best known names, so it’s no surprise that Green Bay’s long time quarterback Aaron Rodgers’ jersey is still a bestseller. Wonder why he’s such a popular quarterback? Well, let’s just say someone who has the distinction of being the only quarterback in history to have a career passer rating of over 100.0 knows what they’re doing. His stats are incredible and he nails countless skill sets, from throwing the fewest interceptions to earning staggering passing yards. If you want to pick a jersey that will never fall out of favor, Aaron Rodgers is a solid choice.
8 Drew Brees – QB, New Orleans Saints
Southern charmer Drew Brees has given Saints fans someone to root for for nearly ten years. He’s made it to the Pro Bowl seven times with the Saints and brought them a Super Bowl victory after joining the team. Though he’s 35 years of age – fairly old, in NFL years – he shows no signs of slowing down. His arm is a finely oiled machine. A Brees jersey is definitely a classic and it's hard to go wrong with the black and gold of the Saints.
7 Tom Brady – QB, New England Patriots
Brady has been with the Patriots since 2000 and has continually showcased his insane skill set. What awards does he have under his belt? Three Super Bowl wins, a two time Super Bowl MVP, nine times in the Pro Bowl … the list is almost literally endless. Brady is pushing 40, and though no one knows when he will announce his retirement, Brady jerseys will always be as all-American as blue jeans.
6 Michael Sam – DE, St. Louis Rams
Michael Sam’s decision to stay true to his self and be forthright about his sexuality is likely what cements him near the top five best sellers. Someone drafted in the seventh round of the NFL Draft generally doesn’t receive an overwhelming amount of press, unless they turn out to shock everyone by being a hundred times more skilled than they were anticipated to be. However, Sam came out as gay after completing his college football career and holds the distinction of being the first publicly gay player to be drafted into the league. With his partner right beside him as he received news he was drafted to the St. Louis Rams, all the buzz surrounding Sam has propelled his jersey into best selling status.
5 Richard Sherman – CB, Seattle Seahawks
Another Seahawk in the mix, and it’s no surprise to see this one on a best sellers list. Richard Sherman is very good at what he does, and many argue he is the NFL’s best cornerback. His salary shows just how much faith the Seahawks place in his skill, as in May of 2014 he signed a staggering $57.5 million contract extension with Seattle. However, his popularity is likely influenced by something besides his football skills – namely, his personality. Sherman is larger than life and is never one to bite his tongue. He speaks his mind and, though he is a fairly divisive player, everyone knows his name – and apparently, many are buying his jersey. He’ll also be on the cover of the Madden NFL 15 video game, another factor which may contribute to his recent popularity.
4 Colin Kaepernick – QB, San Francisco 49ers
Everyone remembers the backup who took over in 2012 and played some amazing football. After Alex Smith’s injury in the 2012 season, Kaepernick stepped up and he remained the starter for the season. The man even started a phenomenon back in the day after a touchdown celebration caused Kaepernicking to spread through social media like wildfire. He also recently signed a six year contract extension, so he’ll be soaking up the California sun for a few more years. The tattoo-covered, giant tortoise owning quarterback remains popular and fans are snatching up his jersey in large numbers.
3 Peyton Manning – QB, Denver Broncos
38 year old Peyton Manning is an utter classic who will never go out of style. Football fans investing in a jersey know that the future Hall of Famer’s jersey is always a good one to have in your collection. His best selling status before the 2012 season may have been due to his joining the Denver Broncos, as his fans rushed out to cloak themselves in orange and blue. However, at this point in his career, the solid as a rock quarterback is just a timeless jersey pick.
2 Russell Wilson – QB, Seattle Seahawks
The Seahawks are at the forefront of the football world’s attention after having won the latest Super Bowl, and, once more, the quarterback is often the most well known name on the team. Wilson is no exception. Making it to the Super Bowl in your sophomore season is nothing to scoff at, and Wilson shows no signs of slowing down. He’s likely going to enter the 2014 season at full throttle, determined to add another ring to his collection. It’s no surprise that his jersey remains one of the most popular picks of football fans.
1 Johnny Manziel – QB, Cleveland Browns
Johnny Football tops yet another list. With the amount of buzz the Texas native has been garnering, it’s quite frankly no surprise that his jersey is the number one best seller right now. His antics have led him to being one of the most divisive players despite having just been drafted. While many acknowledge his skill, others are reluctant to touch him because of his behavior. He’s departed early from Manning Passing Academy, tweeted critiques, gotten kicked out of a fraternity party, and been investigated by the NCAA for accepting payments for autographs. Well, whatever anyone says about him, at least they can’t say he’s boring.