CLEVELAND — Over the past week social media has been ablaze with theories and ideas regarding an orange Browns jersey that was listed for sale on the Fanatics Cleveland Browns Shop website.
Since releasing the redesigned uniforms last season, and sparked again by the release of the 75th anniversary jerseys, many Browns fans have been clamoring for an orange jersey to be added to the team's game day uniform rotation.
In the midst of the outcries for orange jerseys, Fanatics, a retailer offering officially licensed fan gear, had for sale a Nick Chubb orange jersey in a design fans had not seen before.
Cue social media chaos.
Many were adamant about the jersey being a leak of a new game day uniform the Browns were planning on announcing this season, an idea which was fueled when the jerseys soon said "SOLD OUT."
But as executive vice president and member of the Browns ownership group James Wood "JW" Johnson III said on Twitter Thursday, the jerseys are not a leak and are not going to be game worn jerseys.
First time seeing Orange Jerseys and can tell you that we will 100% NOT have Orange Jerseys on the field anytime soon.— JW Johnson (@JDubsIII) August 5, 2021
Still, that confirmation from the top of the Browns organization was not enough for some and the conspiracies continued, with claims that Johnson was doing "damage control" and covering up a uniform leak.
So, with a little free time on our hands, we went down the Jerseygate rabbit hole (yes, I'm calling it Jerseygate) and reached out to Fanatics for more details and have some pretty boring news to report.
As Johnson confirmed, no, the jerseys were not a leak.
The Nick Chubb Orange Cleveland Browns Inverted Legend jersey on the Fanatics website is a "fashion jersey" designed by Nike, a spokesperson for Fanatics clarified.
Each NFL team has a similar jersey design in their own colorway, all designed by Nike and none of them actual game day apparel.
And as for the conspiracies about the product being pulled after a few days because it was a leak, that's also false. Browns fans are just so passionate about the orange jerseys that they sold out very quickly.
Don't fret though, Fanatics said that the orange jerseys that have caused such a stir online will be restocked in the coming days and weeks. You can check the inventory status here.
So, with that cleared up, Browns fans can go back to the regularly scheduled discussions about Baker Mayfield's contract extension and if rookie Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah is actually a linebacker or a safety.
Camryn Justice is a digital content producer at News 5 Cleveland. Follow her on Twitter @camijustice.
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