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A Style Guide to 7 Legendary NFL Coaches

NFL coaches once reigned with poise, exhibiting leadership through style and class.


These days, the NFL is not known for its sartorial finesse. In 2001, the League signed a deal with Reebok, making the retailer the official and sole provider of both uniforms and sideline apparel, including what’s worn by coaches during games and official press conferences; in 2011, Nike, alongside New Era, swiftly intercepted rights as the official outfitters of apparel and on-field hats, respectively. When violations result in steep fines, coaches, as much as players, tend to dress in rigid uniformity — with athletic sweats and color-coded baseball caps — becoming less-than-handsome mascots for the bland corporate sponsorship currently dictating the sport. It’s official: the gridiron is where menswear goes to die.

This wasn’t always the case. Coaches once reigned with poise, exhibiting leadership through style, class and self-expression. Suits and ties were the norm, and a tasteful fedora felt right at home under the floodlights. As the 2015 NFL season gets underway, there’s no better way to pay tribute to a bygone era of sport style than by pairing classic looks from legendary coaches with modern interpretations. They understood suiting up for the game better than anyone in the game today, and you’d be wise to follow their lead.

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Tom Landry


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Scala ‘Classico’ Wool Felt Hat ($51) | Suitsupply Washington Half-Lined Light Blue Jacket ($399)

Vince Lombardi


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Gant Rugger Shantung Rep Tie ($73) | Moscot Yukel Glasses ($260) | Goorin Bros. Guido Delgado Felt Fedora ($125)

Bum Phillips

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Leather Rancher Coat ($565) | Stetson ‘Maximo’ Straw Hat ($92) | Ray-Ban Caravan Sunglasses ($80)

George Halas


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Raglan Varsity Jacket ($238) | Oliver Peoples O’Malley Sun Sunglasses ($380) | Baldwin Snapback Hat ($42)

John Madden


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Bonobos Washed Chinos ($88) | Uniqlo Dry Pique Polo Shirt ($13)

Mike Ditka


Ball and Buck X Randolph Engineering Hunters Sunglasses ($208) | Chubbies Shorts The Fleets ($50) | Crown & Buckle Striped Nylon Watch Band ($12)

Sid Gillman


Suitsupply Sienna Grey Check Suit ($639) | Brooks Brothers Butterfly Self-Tie Bow Tie ($60) | Quixotic Classic Pocket Square ($55)

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