Just Because: Some helmets from the 1920s were bone-chilling

You’ll recall the mini-controversy that cropped up recently when the NFL disallowed players like Darnell Dockett and Robert Mathis from wearing customizable face masks.

Some people might think the mask once worn by Dockett is intimidating (you can see an example here). But to me, it’s got nothing on this old-time executioner style mask that, according to retronaut.com, was unleashed in the 1920s.

Check it, via retronaut:

As Smithsonian Mag notes, “in the early 1900s, soft leather skull caps appeared as optional headgear worn by few players. By the 1920s, hardened leather helmets were first worn, slightly increasing the level protection. Slightly. Perhaps more importantly, these early helmets inspire the popular vision of ‘old-timey’ football …”

Yes, old-timey photos of terrifying facemasks are pretty awesome. Like, this one here:

According to multiple sites, including this one, that’s former Giants star Hinkey Haines from 1925.

I’m betting even Dockett might think twice about going up against Haines if he was wearing that face-covering.

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