You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Bigger, bolder, blingier: What will the Kansas City Chiefs Super Bowl ring look like?

Kansas City Star 3/28/2023 Lisa Gutierrez, The Kansas City Star
At Super Bowl festivities last month, a visitor photographed an oversized image of the Super Bowl ring designed by last year’s winners, the Los Angeles Rams. © Tammy Ljungblad/Kansas City Star/TNS At Super Bowl festivities last month, a visitor photographed an oversized image of the Super Bowl ring designed by last year’s winners, the Los Angeles Rams.

On the day the Kansas City Chiefs rejoiced at their Super Bowl victory parade last month, the players got to feel firsthand a perk of being a champion: They were fitted for their Super Bowl rings.

Representatives from Jostens, the Minnesota-based memorabilia and yearbook company that has created most of the Super Bowl rings ever made — six of Tom Brady’s seven —came to Kansas City to take measurements.

A sign at the Jostens table reminded the players of this ring’s precious power.

“Congratulations! Everyone dreams of it, few make the attempt. Fewer still get there. Your ring will unite your team and celebrate this victory forever. Welcome to sports history.”

The Jostens rep had a tray of massive silver prototypes in various sizes. Chiefs rookie wide receiver Skyy Moore filmed the moment when the rep slipped one on his finger. He wiggled his hand upside down to make sure the ring didn’t slide off.

This will be the third Super Bowl ring for the Chiefs. And if they want to follow trends, they will go big or go home. Super Bowl rings keep getting bigger and more detailed with more bling, and now — moving parts.

The players and the public will have to wait a few months to see the finished ring. They usually take up to two months to design. Then production can take another four to six weeks. Then the teams hand them out in private ceremonies, usually over the summer. And sometime in there, the Chiefs unveil a photo of the ring.

In the meantime, the Chiefs won’t talk about the rings or the process of creating them. The Jostens folks aren’t talking, either, at the request of the team.

“Until there’s a winner there’s obviously superstition, so we don’t engage any team and they don’t engage us in any talk around Championship or Super Bowl rings until that entire season has completed,” Chris Poitras, Jostens vice president, told CNN in 2020, the last time the company designed a ring for the Chiefs.

“We internally begin to imagine possibilities, but they do not leave our four walls until the day after the Super Bowl.”

‘Biggest, baddest (ring) ever seen’

Last year the Los Angeles Rams conjured the largest, most expensive Super Bowl ring ever created, a 20-carat ring created by Jason of Beverly Hills, the go-to jeweler for some of the world’s biggest celebrities and sports organizations, including the NBA.

(For the record, NFL finger sizes — especially those of offensive linemen — are larger than basketball fingers.)

The largest size Super Bowl ring ever created went to William “Refrigerator” Perry of the Chicago Bears in 1986. He wore a size 25, more than twice the average ring size of a male non-athlete.

The Rams’ ring has the most carat weight of gemstones in NFL history. It’s two pieces, a budding trend in Super Bowl ring design. The top lifts off to reveal a tiny recreation of their SoFi Stadium.

Jason Arasheben, CEO of Jason of Beverly Hills, told GQ that he flew to the home of Rams wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. to consult on the ring.

Beckham told him: “I need you to make this the biggest baddest (bleeper-bleeper) you’ve ever seen.”

“’And that’s exactly what we did,” Arasheben said.

“It was our goal, it was the team’s goal, to make sure that we designed a ring that looked nothing like a previous Super Bowl ring,” Arasheben said in a Rams video explaining the ring.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers created the first ring in NFL history to have a removable top after they blew out the Chiefs in 2021. The ring has 319 diamonds symbolizing the 31-9 final score.

It has two marquise cut diamonds representing the team’s two Super Bowl wins and features 15 carats of white diamonds and 150 grams of 14-karat yellow and white gold.

The twist-off top opens to reveal a three-dimensional replica of Tampa’s Raymond James Stadium, home of the Buccaneers.

Quarterback Tom Brady had a lot of input in the design and liked the idea of hidden compartments and special features that spoke of something other than how big and flashy the ring is, said Arasheben.

Brady called it “pretty sick” on his Instagram account.

That gem of a ring is said to have cost nearly $39,000 to create, thought to be twice the cost of the Chiefs’ last ring.

“Really, if these rings keep evolving, then you might as well just hand out Super Bowl chains at some point,” Joe Rivera with The Sporting News sniffed about the Tampa Bay bling.

Gauche? Gaudy? Ostentatious? It’s all in the eye of the beholder.

‘A big fat ring’

The NFL isn’t the only place for championship jewelry with moving parts.

Thbe stunning World Series of Poker bracelet that Jostens designed last year, decked out in white and black diamonds, had a solid-gold poker chip attached to the back that can be detached and used as a card protector.

Super Bowl rings are so huge that players tend to wear them only for special occasions. People always want to see “the ring.”

“It’s a beautiful ring. My mom keeps it in a lockbox at home (in Bluefield, Virginia),” former New York Giants running back Ahmad Bradshaw told a New Jersey newspaper.

“She protects it. I gave it to her when we got it. I maybe wore it for a couple of months, just to show it off because everyone was asking for it.”

Former New England Patriots lineman Larry Izzo, now on the Seattle Seahawks coaching staff, once said that if he wore his ring while shaking hands at a charity event, “I would find myself all blistered up when I’d come home after wearing it. It’s a big ring. It’s a big fat ring.”

So big, according to former Giants tight end Howard Cross, that “when you shake somebody’s hand it squeezes their knuckle. Then you get old and fat, so now you have fat fingers and there’s all kinds of reasons not to wear your ring anymore.”

Jostens master jeweler Miran Armutlu has described how each ring begins life as a 3D computer model, then an actual ring is made for the team’s owner to see. If the owner wants changes, a new computer model is made and a new ring is cast.

Once the team approves the design, a model is made for each of the 53 players with their names and jersey numbers on the side.

You get a ring, and you get a ring

Typically, the NFL pays for about 150 rings. First on the list: players, coaches, front office executives. Then it’s up to each team to decide who else gets one. Trainers? Cheerleaders? Sometimes.

In 2020, the Chiefs gave custom rings to people who work full time behind the scenes to “help the Kansas City Chiefs perform at a championship level,” the team said that September.

“That includes the folks selling tickets, facility management, the sponsorship team, digital content creators, the marketing team, community outreach, human resources and so many more staffers who help make Chiefs Kingdom what it is,” the team announced.

The lucky ones included year-round part-time employees, cheerleaders and members of the Kansas City Police Department who work the games.

Jostens made the first Super Bowl ring, designed by legendary Green Bay Packers coach Vince Lombardi, whose team won the first championship by beating the Chiefs. It was a bicycle compared to today’s Porsche-like rings, with a single diamond surrounded by white gold.

Today, every Super Bowl ring contains diamonds, sapphires and rubies.

The Chiefs’ ring for Super Bowl LIV in 2020 features nine baguette diamonds, two marquise cut diamonds, 244 round diamonds, four baguette rubies and 32 custom-cut rubies totaling 10.85 carats of gem weight.

The value of Super Bowl rings is difficult to pin down because teams don’t typically share that information. But they are generally appraised between $30,000 and $50,000 depending on the jewels and design features.

One Florida jeweler told NBC that the ring Brady helped design for the Buccaneers could go for as much as $100,000 at auction.

Armutlu told CBS News a few years ago that players think about the ring before they even play the game.

“When a team wins they’re in heaven, they think they’re invincible,” he said. “They get the trophy but the trophy is given back. They get the bonus money, it’s gone. The thing that’s left to commemorate is the ring.”

©2023 The Kansas City Star. Visit Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon