Indianapolis News and Headlines


Local tattoo artist paints 9/11-themed cleats for Colts punter Pat McAfee

Local tattoo artist paints McAfee's 9/11 cleats
Posted at 12:33 PM, Sep 12, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-12 22:10:49-04

INDIANAPOLIS -- A local tattoo artist created the art seen on national TV via the feet of Colts punter Pat McAfee.

Nick McNulty was contacted Friday afternoon by a family friend about painting cleats for McAfee, in remembrance of 9/11.

McNulty worked all night on them, from 8:30 p.m. to 5:30 a.m. He thought McAfee would just take a picture and post them, not knowing if he'd actually wear them during the game. 

McAfee wore them during Sunday's game against the Detroit Lions.

"It's an incredible feeling," McNulty said. "I have a lot of friends and family who are in the military, police or firefighters in the community or Indianapolis. It's inspiring for me to able to make something like this."

McNulty has been a full-time tattoo artist at Ink Therapy in Plainfield since 2008.

The shoes were well-received by the other players, McNulty said.

"Everybody was talking about it before and after the game," McNulty said.

He's also painted shoes for wide receiver T.Y. Hilton and running back Frank Gore.


TY Hiltons shoes for today's game I made for him! @colts #colts #indianapoliscolts

A photo posted by Nick McNulty (@nickmcnultyta2) on

McNulty has also tattooed NFL players before. He worked with former Ben Davis and IU player Tandon Doss. Then when Doss was drafted by the Baltimore Ravens, he tattooed a few players from that team, like linebacker Terrell Suggs and wide receiver LaQuan Williams.


Suggs took care of us @inktherapy

A photo posted by Nick McNulty (@nickmcnultyta2) on

With McAfee's shoes, McAfee and a family friend gave McNulty ideas for what should be on them, but he was able to paint them as he saw fit.

According to, the fine for having a personal message on a player's uniform would be $6,076.

MORE | Will Colts' Pat McAfee get fined for 9/11 cleats?

"It would make me sad if he would be fined," McNulty said. "There's still people who care, who remember the tragedy. 9/11 didn't happen that long ago. I hope the NFL would understand and stand by that."

But McNulty would get it if the NFL decides to make McAfee pay.

"I also understand rules are rules, and the NFL is a business," he said. "They have the final say."

See more of McNulty's work from his Instagram page:


Made a yin-yang pokemon tattoo today! #pokemon #pokemongo #tattoo #inktherapy #inktherapyindiana @inktherapyindiana

A photo posted by Nick McNulty (@nickmcnultyta2) on


Eagle and American flag I made for a local police officer! #inktherapy #inktherapyindiana #daysofthedead

A photo posted by Nick McNulty (@nickmcnultyta2) on


Lion and cub. @inktherapyindiana @daysofthedeadtattooexpo @kingpintattoosupply

A photo posted by Nick McNulty (@nickmcnultyta2) on


Tiger eyes I just tattooed. #inktherapytattoo @inktherapyindiana

A photo posted by Nick McNulty (@nickmcnultyta2) on