They wore their white uniforms at home for the first time since the 2008 regular-season opener against the Chiefs, when quarterback Tom Brady suffered a season-ending knee injury. And according to the Patriots' public relations and equipment staffs, it was only the second time they've ever worn the current model of their away uniforms in a game at Gillette Stadium.
By wearing their road whites, the Patriots forced the Bengals to wear their black home jerseys. Obviously, the fashion statement was determined long in advance, and the Patriots were hoping for a hot September day, which would cause the summer sun to beat down on those black tops. However, the Bengals lucked out and had Mother Nature on their side, even though they got run out of the Patriots' barn.
Patriots tight end Alge Crumpler has played in both the AFC South and the NFC South, so he's spent plenty of his Sundays in uncomfortable heat. He said it's definitely an advantage if you're wearing lighter colors on those days.
"On a normal, hot day around here, it probably would affect it, but we just probably had one of the more perfect weather days [Sunday]," Crumpler said. "I know when I'm trying to get a good sweat, I wear my darker shirts."
Even though the Patriots got a cool day, their choice to wear road whites at home shows that Bill Belichick is still one of the smartest coaches in football. He will not overlook any detail in game preparation.