Tonight the Denver Broncos take on the San Diego Chargers. Murmuring of ornery old men and complaining of Broncos diehards will start immediately, and it will have nothing to do with Trevor Siemian or Paxton Lynch. The preliminary complaining you will hear will be aimed toward the Color of Autumn, ORANGE. And on this early week matchup, the “get off my lawn crowd” will be in full effect, and loud as ever.

Tonight, in accordance with Thursday Night Football and “The Color Rush,” the Denver Broncos will be donning ALL ORANGE. Yes, orange jerseys, orange socks and, for the first time since the days of Floyd Little, orange pants. It will be an Orange Spectacle the likes of which we have not seen in 50 years, when Charlie Brown first came upon the Great Pumpkin. Tonight orange is the new black.

The color versus color, or Color Rush, as it is known now, is not necessarily a new idea. In fact, NFL teams were only required to add a white uniform after games started being broadcast on television in 1957. Before that time, teams wore their ‘color’ unless it was too similar to the opposing team; then a secondary uniform became necessary. The mandate for a secondary white uniform  was necessary as games were broadcast in black and white. The league learned quickly that a contrast was needed, and so, to have a more visually appealing product, the NFL required the secondary white jersey. Trying to appease the viewer was as important then as it is now.

Since its start in 2015, the NFL Color Rush has had its fair share of dark moments and black marks. In a Thursday night matchup between the Buffalo Bills, wearing all red, and New York Jets, donning all green, color blind viewers found it difficult to differentiate between the two teams. After this, Nike, along with the NFL, decided this issue should not have a gray area and brought in doctors from Mount Sinai Hospital to consult on any further color combinations that might not bode well for viewers.

(Aside … Aren’t stop lights green and red?)

Critics of the Color Rush say that this is all a scheme to sell more jerseys and get a different product out to fans, who will buy anything in order to represent their fandom.  And my answer to that is, SO WHAT? In a world where real problems exist, the threat of having too many jerseys in the closet sounds pretty trivial. At the basic level, the NFL is a collection of 32 separate billion dollar companies. Those companies are directly and indirectly responsible for the livelihood of millions, mine included. If they want to sell a different style jersey or change the color of shirt from time to time, I am not opposed to such forms of free enterprise.

Another criticism is that fans and viewers do not know who is playing when they first tune in. “Uniforms should be uniform, and their regularity and consistency is in place to help recognize the team.” It is a televised NFL game. Were you not going to watch? One game with your team wearing all one color isn’t going to hurt you or anyone else, so stop handing out veggies and toothbrushes at Halloween; go get a jumbo bag of candy for the little ones, and relax. Life should be fun every now and then.

The football fashion critics will be in rare form tonight, and they will be burbling and spewing anti-orange sentiment everywhere. But while that carroty critique runs rampant, there will be one opinion that is uniform. Those new helmets are a ‘D’ light.