The Buffalo Bills will feature a look that's both new and familiar whenever the 2011 NFL season kicks off.
The team unveiled new uniforms in an elaborate ceremony Friday night at Ralph Wilson Stadium, retaining the charging buffalo logo but going back to white helmets and royal blue uniform tops.
|The Bills will wear white helmets next season, and the royal blue uniform tops also will return. (Kevin Hoffman/US Presswire)|
"We listened to our fans," Bills CEO Russ Brandon told the team's official website. "We have done a lot of research (and) this is a long process to go through. We just wanted to get back to our storied tradition while we still highlight our brand."
The Bills' new uniforms have several fresh updates, including the placement of the iconic charging buffalo on every article except the socks.
"One of the things we heard consistently was there was really no identifying mark on our jersey," said Marc Honan, the Bills' senior vice president of marketing and broadcasting. "We feel that the charging buffalo is perhaps one of the strongest marks in the league, and why not incorporate it into the look, and we think it looks great on the jersey."
The Bills have added their team logo above the nameplate on the back of the jersey. The Arizona Cardinals and Minnesota Vikings are the only other two NFL teams to feature that design, according to the Bills' website.
The team name "Bills" also now appears below the V-neck of the jersey on the front.
"In the last five years, we've seen a real trend in the league with teams moving towards including whether it's a logo or a word mark as part of their jersey makeup," Honan said.
The jerseys, designed by Reebok, are 20 to 30 percent lighter in weight, depending on the player's size.
The most instantly recognizable change is the helmet, which will be white for the first time since 1983. The color has been enhanced with a "metallic flake" to gives the helmet a sparkling quality.
"We wanted something that just wasn't a flat white," Bills director of merchandise Tim Kehoe told the team's website. "For more of a modern type of a look, we wanted to go with this metallic flake, which will add a little bit of reflective nature to the quality of the helmet."