Traditional & Chrome

Traditional-style Pocket Pro helmets were manufactured in the late 1990’s and, sporadically, through about 2004. Chrome helmets were also made in this era, also in the traditional style. Many helmets have a time stamp of either 1997 or 1999 on the inside of the helmet. There were three sets: 1997 (green packaging), 1999 (yellow packaging), and 2003 (red packaging).

Traditional pocket pros have round ear holes and are heavier than later pocket pro series. Almost all of the traditional helmets also have a small “R” under one of the ear holes.

See Checklist at the bottom of the page for a list of traditional style and chrome helmets.

1997 Traditional Set

The traditional 1997 set had green packaging. Each division had its own packaging.

Three helmets can only be found with this set (although they may have been sold individually at some point):

  • 1990-97 green NY Jets helmet with the black facemask.
  • The Ravens logo was changed in 1999 after a local resident filed a copyright lawsuit. This helmet is also only available in this set.
  • Finally, the Houston Oilers ceased to exist after the 1996 season. So it’s only available in this set.

1999 Traditional Set

The 1999 sets had yellow packaging. With the return of the Cleveland Browns, there were 31 teams. So, Riddell issued a throwback helmet with 5 of the 6 divisions to even things out.

1999 Set Throwbacks:
Chicago Bears 1962-73. Also in Throwback Series 1 set.
Dallas Cowboys 2004-14 alternate/throwback. Also in Throwback Series 1 set. This helmet is more of a darker-white with a darker grey facemask.
Denver Broncos 1993-96. Only available in this set and the 4-piece team set.
New England Patriots 1964-81. The 1964-81 New England Patriots with the regular grey facemask and red/blue stripes is also only available with this set. A 2-bar facemask version exists in the 1969 AFC throwback 2-bar set.
San Francisco 49ers 1989-95. Only available in this set.

Tennessee Oilers

The Houston Oilers moved to Tennessee in 1997. For two years, the team was known as the Tennessee Oilers. The helmet was identical to the Houston Oilers helmet, with the exception of a tiny State of Tennessee logo near the earhole. This helmet was not associated with any set and was only sold individually.

2003-05 Traditional Sets

2003-05 sets had red packaging. The helmet style was the same as the 1997 and 1999 sets and still included the “R” under the ear hole.

Later Versions

Riddell continued to manufacture helmets in the traditional style with the Throwback series 1 and 2 sets and other iterations. Riddell also continued to sell individual helmets with the original style in red packaging. By around 2005, however, Riddell had switched to the Revolution style of helmet.

Traditional Style Helmet Checklist

These throwback helmets were included in sets with contemporaneous helmets. The Broncos and 49ers helmets were only sold contemporaneous with these sets. The Patriots helmet is also available as a two-bar helmet in the AFC 1969 2-bar set. The Bears helmet is also available as a two-bar helmet in the NFC 1969 2-bar and Throwback 2-bar sets. The Cowboys helmet is also available in the Throwback Series 1 set.

Traditional Style Chrome Helmets

To my knowledge, three chrome pocket pro sets were manufactured.

  • The first chrome set was a 34-piece set manufactured in 2000. This set has 31 teams (the Houston Texans were not founded yet) and 3 NFL shield helmets, in silver, blue and red.
  • The next set was identical to the 34-piece set, but added an NFC and AFC logo helmet, for a total of 36 pieces.
  • A third set included the Texans helmet, but none of the NFL shield or NFC/AFC logo helmets. So, this set had 32 helmets.

Riddell also sold the chrome helmets individually-packaged. All of these helmets are in the original style. Some have an “R” under the earhole.

I think Riddell discontinued the chrome helmets around 2004 or 2005. That was around the time Riddell transitioned to the Revolution style helmet. Additionally, I have not seen a chrome helmet for a team with a helmet design 2005 and after.

Because the chrome helmets were manufactured between 2000 and 2005, five teams that transitioned to new helmet styles have two versions of the Chrome helmets.

  • Atlanta Falcons: 97-02 and 03-present
  • Buffalo Bills: 87-01 and 02-10
  • Detroit Lions: 83-02 and 03-08
  • Indianapolis Colts: 95-03 and 04-present
  • Seattle Seahawks: 83-01 and 02-11

There are five chrome shield helmets:

  • Silver helmet – NFL shield, white facemask
  • Red helmet – NFL shield, white facemask
  • Blue helmet – NFL shield, white facemask
  • Silver helmet – Red “A” AFC logo, red facemask
  • Silver helmet – Blue “N” NFC logo, blue facemask

There are also three chrome helmets with soda logos:

  • Coke
  • Diet Coke
  • Sprite

Chrome Checklist

See also: Super Bowl Chrome Helmets

Super Bowl Chrome Helmets (see Super Bowl pocket pro helmet site for more information)

  • Super Bowl 1: Green Bay Packers
  • Super Bowl 2: Green Bay Packers
  • Super Bowl 3: New York Jets
  • Super Bowl 4: Kansas City Chiefs
  • Super Bowl 5. Baltimore Colts
  • Super Bowl 6: Dallas Cowboys
  • Super Bowl 7: Miami Dolphins
  • Super Bowl 8: Miami Dolphins
  • Super Bowl 9: Pittsburgh Steelers
  • Super Bowl 10: Pittsburgh Steelers
  • Super Bowl 11: Oakland Raiders
  • Super Bowl 12: Dallas Cowboys
  • Super Bowl 13: Pittsburgh Steelers
  • Super Bowl 14: Pittsburgh Steelers
  • Super Bowl 15: Oakland Raiders
  • Super Bowl 16: San Francisco 49ers
  • Super Bowl 17: Washington Commanders
  • Super Bowl 18: Oakland Raiders
  • Super Bowl 19: San Francisco 49ers
  • Super Bowl 20: Chicago Bears
  • Super Bowl 21: New York Giants
  • Super Bowl 22: Washington Commanders
  • Super Bowl 23: San Francisco 49ers
  • Super Bowl 24: San Francisco 49ers
  • Super Bowl 25: New York Giants
  • Super Bowl 26: Washington Commanders
  • Super Bowl 27: Dallas Cowboys
  • Super Bowl 28: Dallas Cowboys
  • Super Bowl 29: San Francisco 49ers
  • Super Bowl 30: Dallas Cowboys
  • Super Bowl 31: Green Bay Packers
  • Super Bowl 32: Denver Broncos
  • Super Bowl 33: Denver Broncos
  • Super Bowl 34: St. Louis Rams
  • Super Bowl 35: Baltimore Ravens
  • Super Bowl 36: New England Patriots
  • Super Bowl 36: Logo helmet (on both sides)
  • Super Bowl 37: Tampa Bay Buccaneers
  • Super Bowl 38: New England Patriots
  • Super Bowl 38: Logo helmet (on both sides)
  • Super Bowl 39: New England Patrios
  • Super Bowl 39: Logo on one side / Pepsi logo on one side
  • Super Bowl 40: Pittsburgh Steelers – I cannot verify if Riddell made a factory helmet for this super bowl. I have only seen one picture on the internet, and it’s not conclusive.