So, unless you were under a rock yesterday, you might have heard that the New York Jets got new uniforms. They even had stuff going in Times Square during the press conference. The unis look… a-like this.
Reactions have been… let’s say mixed, to be generous. But hey, we’ve had a day to digest it, and as the resident Jets fan in the writers’ room (oof, me), and a reader of Paul Lukas’s Uni Watch (because I’m a massive nerd), I get to be the one to give my opinions on it. I guess let’s work top down? First off, logo changes.
I’m not against the reasoning of “make it more football-shaped” even if it looks a little weird (could it have been rounder at the co-vertices?) and I’m definitely for “update the football if the middle.” But it kinda looks a little cluttered, with the full “New York” and with the football actually blocking some of the lettering in Jets. And if you’re making the outside football-shaped, do you need the inner football? Or vice-versa? So points for good thinking, not all of them for the execution. (And apparently according to the Play Like a Jet Podcast, Nike wanted to give them a totally new logo and ownership refused.)
Oh, and also they changed the J to a lower-case in the font, and yes, there is a difference, and I am not a fan. To the helmets:
I’m okay with green helmets, though this doesn’t show that they’re a chrome-ish finish? Is that a thing? But yeah, they’re shiny. And same thing, the football interferes with the wordmark. And they kept the wordmark as a logo, so it is still there as an option, though then it would be pretty bare, just the lettering. What I’m less okay with is the black facemasks, when white would be far better (or green if they go green Color Rush).
Now to the unis. Everyone else has complained about “New York” being above the numbers, and that it looks collegiate at best. My best friend asked me who my favorite CFL team was and I knew it was a Jets joke. That’s not exactly a good thing.
So I’m gonna complain about the number font. Now, I am glad that there’s a custom number font, because I don’t think the standard block numbers would work too well on these jerseys. However, what I don’t like about the number font is that the letter font, called Nitro & Turbo, has a steep italicization. And the numbers don’t have that at all. And the 8s (and by extension, 9s and 3s) look kinda too round, especially compared to the 1s. They could have found a kind of median between their Nitro font and these numbers. This is the extent of my graphic design skills because I can’t actually write or make it nice, which I blame on being left-handed.
I’m okay with the shoulder and leg patterns, especially if they’re wearing white/green or green/white. If they go all-white or all-green there could potentially be problems. The green jersey (“Gotham Green”) I’m also okay with, though with the shine on the helmets they’ll never quite match, but the shade’s okay, it’s a little lighter. And white (“Spotlight White”) is white, you gotta have a white jersey. Now onto the fun part.
Why. The fuck. Does everyone and their mother. Think. They need. A Black. Alternate.
Sorry, Stealth Black. Because that makes it better. And because it’s, and I quote the video, “inspired by the grit and toughness of New York.” Now, a couple people defended it by saying that black was a number outline color in those ’90s unis, and it is, and you can see that these unis are inspired by those, minus the jet tail on the helmet of course. (The current typeface with the fin looks pretty nice to me, thanks to the magic of someone using Photoshop. But digressing.)
I’m okay with black as an outline color, and it’s been brought up that black was an outline color, so it’s okay to bring it up to full color status. Bullshit, there’s no reason the Jets need an all-black alt. Oh, they’re gonna have a “black-out” game? Why isn’t it a green-out game? It’s not like your team’s nickname literally has the color green in it or anything. I would have thought if you’re really going to go with the “grit and toughness of New York” you could do a gray to evoke skyscrapers, or the concrete jungle. Call it Skyline Gray or something.
That would be better, because not everybody has a gray alternate. Yet. Plus, gray and green have a good look (like the Oakland A’s road grays, or just their general look). And then you don’t look like the Eagles with your sudden black alts.
So that does it. There are some decent things, but in general it’s at best a step to the side. Oh, and they should have white socks as an option with the green pants, forgot that. Unless you’re going for the monochrome look, and if you’re wearing white tops with the green pants clearly you’re not. So, get the white socks for those too.