The San Diego Chargers and Kansas City Chiefs will honor the 15th anniversary of September 11, 2001, this Sunday, both with a pregame ceremony and the wearing of special 9/11 decals on their helmets.
The decal is a blue and red ribbon, with stars and stripes and "9/11" written across it.
Allen Wright, the team's long-time equipment manager, was with the Kansas City Chiefs back in 2001, when the catastrophic event took place. The Chiefs actually took on the New York Giants in their first game after the incident on September 23, 2001.
"I think everybody should have a little special feeling about it, just because it was so important in our history of our country," Wright said. "It was such a huge event that happened. If the league asks us to put it on the helmet, it has special meaning."
When asked about the history of decals at the Chiefs, Wright recalled honoring former Chiefs personnel staff member Whitey Duvall in the early 90s, and later in the 2000s, Chiefs founder Lamar Hunt.
Nowadays, decals are a more common gesture, as the Chiefs also honor Breast Cancer Awareness and Salute to Service through the same means.
To accommodate a league-wide decal request, the NFL sends out instructions for every team, and then, in particular for the Chiefs, Wright assigns the job to one of his most trusted staff members.
"We have one guy—Jay White," Allen added. "He's kind of my helmet guy, and so he's the one that puts them on. I like one guy to do it because that way they stay very consistent."