The Nike Football League is official and I feel the need to make a few comments.
In general, I don't care about what happened in Brooklyn yesterday but I do care greatly about football, my Bears and uniform design. Since the only real redesign to speak of from yesterday was the Seahawks, that's what I'll be covering.
First, let's talk about the Nike aspects that affect football:
Flywire Collar: Call it whatever you want - Flywire, Nikelace, Colombian Necktie, etc. - but I'm torn on this uni element. I feel like collars creeping up on people is an issue that bugs football players, it bugged me as a kid and I see a lot of players holding the collar back. Hell, Jay Cutler violently pulls on his collar, but perhaps that's to adjust his pads.
Listen, if it makes jerseys more comfortable, I think it might be worth it. But on some of the jerseys, it ruins the flow of the collar design. If you can't make the collar uniform all the way around, don't bother with this 'technology'.
New Jerseys: The main issue here is that the jerseys have different materials and when players begin to sweat, these different materials react differently and begin to appear as though they're two different colors, AKA the Sweatbox.
Basically, I don't really care. Listen, it's hard playing at your maximum output when you're starting to overheat. If this helps, I'm okay with it. What's the difference between this and pit stains on Gayle Sayers back in the '60s?
New Pants: This is a bit of a twofer.
First, the new pants feature a belt loop that includes padding at the hip that players might otherwise not wear. Now, this design infringes a bit on the pants stripes on many teams but if this prevents one player from missing one half of football on your team, the pads are well worth the small infringement on the pants' design.
There’s a lot of reasons to hate Nike, but I don't think this is one of those reasons. This sort-of mandatory hip padding could be a great thing since most players would rather go without any hip padding due to a comfort issue.
Next is the same issue with the Jerseys: Different materials in different places. Pretty much the same as above, the issues seem negligible and the benefits are noticeable.
Now lets get to The Bears:
When I first saw the new Bears unis, I was mad. I was mad because the numbers on the new Nike jerseys are now on the shoulders rather than the sleeves. But now that I've had some time to mull it over I now think that it was a bit of an inevitability. Otherwise the sleeve stripes would've really suffered. It's not perfect, but it's understandable.
But I have a dream that one day sons of stripes and sons of TV numbers will be able to fit together at the table of uni-hood (specifically on the sleeve). All sleeve elements are created equal. I have a dream.
Other than that, the uniforms are pretty innocuous. They'll look primarily the same from a distance and that makes me happy. The 'GSH' is slightly bigger, but as long as it's there but not overwhelming, I could care less.
Finally, let's get to the Seahawks new designs:
I'm more surprised than any of you might be when I say this: I kinda like them.
Now, there's a bit too much going on on the jerseys (I don't need the triangle surrounding the swoosh, the asymmetrical 'Seahawks' and these green things around the collar need to go away) but there's some good stuff to work with.
And while I think the number font is stupid, that pants design is brilliant. I mean genius. It's a classic stripe with a unique take and local flavor (Haida art inspiration).
I think my biggest qualm with the helmet is that the helmet isn't gray. And if the helmet is gray I think they should only use the gray pants.
With some minor modifications, these uniforms might be some of my favorite modern uniforms in any sport.
A lot of the reaction is quite negative but I think these unis have potential. They're not great as of yet, but perhaps they will be, just like the great Titans' unis.
Well, those are my thoughts and I'm glad the NFL still looks like the NFL and I'm glad there's still room for me and my concepts to improve the NFL's image.