Ravens safety Eric Weddle has a long, wondrous beard. He lives in a neighborhood where his house is among the only ones illuminated on Christmas. Which meant that for Halloween this year, there was only one costume that made sense.
“I was gonna dress up as Santa,” he said Wednesday. That dark beard of his, he said, “was going to be white. Dye it white. … I thought it'd be funny to do, because we're funny, and we're the only ones that have lights up in our neighborhood at Christmastime. But it was all fun and games.”
But this is a game week, of course. And an important one, at that, with the AFC North-leading Pittsburgh Steelers coming to town Sunday. Trick-or-treaters in his neighborhood start going door to door around 5 p.m.; he doesn’t normally get back home until 7.
But if he can’t get back in time to greet kids with candy in his best Kris Kringle get-up, he has a backup plan.
“I have a monkey suit that I wore two years ago that I could always run out there [in] and go get some candy,” he said. Tail and everything? “Oh, yeah.”
The days of trick-or-treating have long since come and gone for Weddle and his Ravens teammates, who cannot subsist on a diet of Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, try as they might. But before they became talented enough to wear the jersey they’re now recognized in every fall weekend, they put on silly costumes. Here are a few of their favorites.
Right tackle Orlando Brown Jr.: “It’s a tie between the toga and the Superman costumes.”
The rookie starter made a bed sheet into a toga for a high school party, and it turned out really well, but he vividly remembers his second-grade look. It was, he said, “the most expensive Superman costume.” The “S” on the chest had a battery-operated light, and he could play catchphrases with the push of a button. The shoulders “sparkled.” He even had a pair of Air Force 1 sneakers in Superman yellow.
The only problem: the sleeves on the suit he wore stopped at his elbows.
“I was like the black Superman, bro,” Brown said. “It was pretty cool.”
Tight end Mark Andrews: The rookie had a bloody good time in about fourth or fifth grade. That’s when Andrews wore what he remembered as “this little skeleton outfit.” OK, scary enough.
This costume, though, came with a handheld pump. With it, he could trigger a wave of blood-red liquid “to make it look like it was flowing through” his exposed bones. That was the high point of his Halloween career.
“I had to stop doing [trick-or-treating] when I was in high school,” he said. “I definitely loved it when I was younger.”
Defensive tackle Michael Pierce: During Pierce’s rookie year, former Ravens defensive back Lardarius Webb threw a Halloween party.
Pierce, a powerful man with a broad chest, went as Bob Parr, aka Mr. Incredible, the protagonist of "The Incredibles,” another powerful man with a broad chest.
“People loved it, man,” he said. “I didn't stay for the best-dressed [contest], but they had some people in makeup and all the other stuff. But I think that was a pretty cool costume.”
Center Matt Skura: Sometimes a costume is a little too good. When Skura was about 8 or 9, he got a werewolf mask. It wasn’t cheap, either.
“It was pretty nice,” he recalled, “except it was really hot out.” Hot enough that if the mask stayed on for long enough, it felt as the materials were starting to melt on his face.