Bill Svoboda 1956
(Authentic Reproduction)



Helmet Hut Exonerated of Slanting Facts
Responding to charges that they intentionally tried to deceive the public, Helmet Hut management submitted an actual 1956 photograph (see above) in their defense. Helmet Hut claims that this photo proves that the unusual slanted facemask configuration featured on their Giants -- Bill Svoboda "Helmet Hut Authentic Reproduction" helmet was correct in every respect. As suggested by their stone silence, authorities were dumbfounded by this last minute evidence and they immediately challenged the authenticity of the photograph. They later issued a statement saying they may have rushed to judgment regarding their original allegations and have subsequently dismissed a similar complaint regarding an Otis Taylor -- Kansas City Chiefs helmet reproduction.  
Helmet Hut went on to say that after considering all other alternatives available in 1956, Svoboda's non conventionally positioned dual Riddell "BT-5" stubby facemasks made perfect sense for that season. Riddell's clear Lucite facemask, introduced in 1952, offered more protection than a conventionally positioned "BT-5" single bar but it was quickly outlawed by the league because it had a tendency to shatter during play. The more protective 1950s steel cage style facemask produced by Schutt Mfg. was quite heavy and reduced the player's field of vision. Riddell's famous "BD-9" two bar facemask was not introduced until the 1957 season. Svoboda actually switched to the "BD-9" when it became available and he wore it during the Giant's legendary 1958 NFL Championship overtime loss to the Baltimore Colts (he was actually involved in the coin toss for the overtime period). Simply stated, Bill Svoboda's unusual slanted 1956 facemask style offered the hard hitting linebacker, lightweight, increased protection with minimal loss of vision.
And a final note to authorities -- you can always count on Helmet Hut to provide the correct angle to all facemask stories!

1958 NFL Championship