Today, Nike unveiled their much anticipated line of uniforms for all thirty-two NFL teams. All-Pro Cornerback Champ Bailey was in New York this morning representing the Broncos by modeling the new uniform. By all accounts it was a laser filled, smoke machine fueled extravaganza that culminated in, for better or worse, essentially the same Denver Broncos uniform we're used to with some small modifications.
For the casual fan the changes will hardly be noticed. For uniform-obsessed people like myself, the changes are indeed interesting. Follow me after the jump to find out how the Nike uniform differs from the Reebok one we've enjoyed over the last ten years.
Here is Nike’s description of the new technology utilized in the uniforms:
The Denver Broncos have chosen to take full innovation in the Nike Elite 51 football uniform. The Broncos design aesthetic will stay true to years past while updating the color-blocking in the neckline in order to accommodate the Flywire technology to reduce weight and provide a lockdown fit over the pads. Designed and engineered from the inside out, the new uniform focuses on creating a system where the baselayer, padding, jersey and pant work in concert. A few of the new innovations include increasing sleeve articulation for better range of motion and integrating new four-way stretch fabrication to provide a streamlined shrink-wrap fit.
Contrary to internet reports that the striping on the helmet would be different, it was not. The orange stripe that comes to a point in the front of the helmet still does so and by all indications, the helmet is exactly the same as we've known it.
The largest change in the jersey comes on the collar. Nike accentuated the blue accents already on the jersey blue swatches that flank the neck - kind of a fang-type design (or a polo shirt collar as Oxmouth pointed out in the comments below). Also from the pictures released at the unveiling, it appears that the orange color has slightly been altered. It doesn't have that shiny look to it and it's not as red(ish) as it has been in years past. The matte orange that in the pictures looks great and I think it's a jersey that Bronco fans can be proud of for years to come.
Other features of the jersey according to Nike's fact sheet :
High tenacity, stretch material, for light weight lockdown strength
STRETCH TWILL NUMBERS
4-way stretch even on numbering system
Eliminates layers, reduces weight, and provides lockdown fit
By all outward appearances, the pants the same. Nike's changes are centered around the construction and material used in the pants rather than the pants themselves. Why the D-Ring on the belt is a selling point, I can't be sure.
CUT FOR MOBILITY
4-way stretch, hydrophobic materials help increase range of motion, wet or dry
Lightweight, flexible impact protection incorporated directly into the pant
ALUMINUM D-RING BELT
Aircraft-grade aluminum D-ring belt reduces weight
ZONED MESH VENTILATION
Cooling zones for optimal thermoregulation
The uniforms won't be available for public purchase until April 15th.