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Authentic vs. Cheap NFL Jerseys

Differences between Authentic and Cheap NFL Jerseys:

Are you a die-hard football fan that's thinking about buying a cheap NFL jersey from a discount site? Before you do, let's call a timeout and review your decision.

Knockoff NFL jerseys are cheap, but are also a prime example of "you get what you pay for". If you're planning on being a fan for more than one season - yeah, we thought so - then buying a fake NFL jersey from a Chinese site probably isn't your best option. Why, you may ask? Here's a breakdown of the major differences between counterfeit jerseys and officially licensed NFL jerseys.

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Quality Issues of Fake NFL Jerseys:

If you're shopping online for a cheap NFL jersey, there's a few key points you should keep in mind when considering the quality of the product you're about to purchase. Knockoff jersey stores will typically only show you one poor quality image of the jersey they're selling with no alternate images of the details or lettering. Beware when you see this, they use these pictures on purpose so you can't see the low quality of their stitching and lettering. Fake NFL jerseys have been reported to fall apart quickly and have the letters and numbers sewn on crooked or even upside down. The stitching on authentic jerseys will always be uniform and the tackle twill lettering will lay flat and even with the jersey, while fakes will have inconsistent, loose and frayed stitching with mismatched thread colors.

All authentic jerseys have deep, true colors on heavy durable mesh with spandex panels, while cheap jerseys are made from flimsy low-quality mesh in faded colors that are very obvious when compared to the authentic.

Another easy way to check for authenticity is to look at the tags. A tag on your jersey should have a hologram sticker with the official NFL Shield on it, if it doesn't have one, don't buy it. Be careful when you look at the stickers as many counterfeit jerseys come with hologram stickers on them now. The fake NFL holograms can be very similar to the official ones, but the footballs or helmets on the sticker will all be one color instead of multiple colors like on the official one. Also, read the tags on the jerseys if you can, if the jersey says it's made in China, it's a fake. No officially licensed NFL jerseys are made in China.

Sizing Issues of Cheap NFL Jerseys:

The sizing on cheap jerseys is typically way off from the normal sizing chart as well. There's plenty of examples available online that compare an authentic size large jersey to a size large purchased from a discount jersey shop, and the difference is staggering. Not only are the jerseys much larger than they should be, but the hem can be cut unevenly or feature a drop tail in the back which is not consistent with authentics.

Authentic jerseys tend to fit looser since they are made to fit pads under them, just like the ones worn on the field do, and have stretch sleeve hems for optimal movement. If you notice the sleeves are loose cut, they're incorrect and modeled after a replica jersey instead.

NFL Jersey Price Points:

The easiest way to spot a fake jersey is the price of it. Licensed NFL jerseys range in price from $85 for a replica to almost $300 for an authentic, which is why many fans are tempted to buy a cheap NFL jersey online that can sell for as low as $35. However, factor into that low price the cost of shipping from China and waiting as long as 3-4 weeks for it to ship to you. You may be thinking right now that the cheap option is still the way to go, but remember you'll be lucky if that fake jersey lasts you through the entire season, or is even worthy of wearing to the stadium. Many disappointed fans have reported their cheap jerseys falling apart after a few washes. Think low price, low quality.

If you don't want to shell out the big bucks for an authentic, Nike makes replica game jerseys as well that offer the same look as an authentic, but feature screened letters and numbers instead of sewn-on twill lettering. These replica jerseys are a cheaper alternative to the authentics but still offer a quality alternative that'll give your wallet a break.

Don't think you'll fool your fellow fans with a fake jersey on gameday either, any loyal fan will be able to spot the difference between your knockoff and the real jersey the guy next to you is sporting. So do yourself a favor, buy a licensed Nike NFL jersey from an official retailer like Football Fanatics and rest assured that your new jersey will last you through many tailgates and seasons to come.

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