Friday, August 20, 2010

NFL Logo Rankings: #26 Bills and #25 Bengals

Doubling it up today. As I continue the countdown today, I begin with #26 the Buffalo Bills. The Bills have been using the leaping buffalo since 1974. For that time period, this logo was sleek, energetic and forward thinking. It first debuted on the helmet on white, but they moved to a red helmet to separate themselves from the rest of the division. At the time the Patriots, Jets, Colts, and Dolphins had white helmets, and for good reason. White helmets look sweet, so I understand them changing. Plus when you line up against divisional teams twice a year, it's not a bad thing to want to look different and separate yourself from the opponents. However, the Bills broke out the throwbacks. And good lord are they great. Which brings me to the logo. Like the Lions, seeing just that silhouette of that buffalo on the helmet reminds me how the simplest logos can say a lot. There is no guessing. No flare or fireworks. It says Buffalo. And since this team is associated more with it's city name than it's nickname, why not embrace it? A buffalo for Buffalo. It's perfect. And it's time to move past the mess they've made of their current uniforms and the 4 straight Super Bowl losses. Bring back the lone buffalo!
Keep the white helmet or...
Keep the red. It's a win, win.

Next we have #25 the Bengals.

The Bengals. Great helmet, car wreck uniforms, dumb logo. The "B" just doesn't work. It looks too complicated and clunky. It's actually not a very good "B". I sort of looks like a "B". Kind of. 

This is an easy fix. They have a great Bengal head they use. Just stick with that and leave the cartoon letters alone.

Which, while I'm thinking about it. The AFC North is such a weird conference for logos and uniforms. I just ranked 3 of the 4 teams in the bottom 10, leaving only the Steelers to be ranked. The 3 I have ranked already, Ravens, Browns, Bengals, are all weirdly linked. It's like the Kevin Bacon game:

The AFC North has 2 teams with a ton of history (Steelers, Browns). The Browns have history but their team was moved to Baltimore. Baltimore used to be the Browns but they share the history of the Colts since Johnny U played there (BTW be sure to catch the ESPN 30 for 30 film about the Colts Marching Band. It's excellent). So you have 2 teams that have broken histories, both being new teams one way or the other. The Browns and Bengals used to be owned by the same owner, Paul Brown and the Bengals we're modeled, look wise. The Browns were named after him but Cincy's stadium is named after him. The Browns have never won a Super Bowl, but the Ravens did. Baltimore has 2 SB wins but 2 different teams did it (Colts, Ravens). No wonder the Steelers are usually the best team in this division.

Then the AFC North has  4 different helmets styles: Browns no helmet logo, Steelers with 1 helmet logo, Ravens with the standard 2 helmet logos, and the Bengals have an all over design. 

It's a mess.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

BIG post: NFL Logo #27 Ravens, New NBA Unis

Big post today. I had to work a lot the last couple days and couldn't get to some of the news going on. Continuing the NFL Logo countdown, we have #27 the Ravens. I have never been a big fan of any of their logos. At least the ones they slap on their helmets. For those of you who don't know, the Ravens actually debuted with no raven on the helmet but rather a crest with wings. However, there was a lawsuit over the creation. Well, the guy won but got no money from the suit and the Ravens changed their logo. Personally, I would have just taken pride in the fact that the team was using my logo and just got them to agree to credit me as the designer and some free swag every year. But that guy got a lose-lose. All he has is that Wikipedia entry to show for it. And what a cheap move by the Ravens, but what do you expect from an owner who moved the Browns (note, Cleveland kind of had this coming because he wanted a new stadium and they said no right after they had just gave the Indians a new one. Still a shady move, but hey it's his team. All fans remember that. Owners actually own the team. They are the ones that really win or lose, risking their own bank rolls. It sad, but true.) Anyways, when it comes down to it, a simplification of the logo is all they need. Here is a mock I whipped up:

See, doesn't that look cleaner? They can keep the raven head and use it else wear.  
In other news the NBA has a foursome of new uniforms. The biggest one being the Cavs officially de-LeBroned themselves, ditching the uniforms they changed to when they drafted the King. Those are some new beauties. It's a shame their is not one single player I would want to buy their jersey on that team. Maybe Varejo but he's not the type player that is going to stay there. He'll be a role player on several NBA teams in his career. Let it be known though, these uniform changes have to be approved months in advance. So LeBron was probably still shooting left handed free throws with the Cavs while these were being approved by the league.

Next we have the Timberwolves who kept the same basic design but ditched the green. Whatever. It's not really that big of a change to get all crazy about but personally I liked the green thrown in there. I feel like they went a little bland with the change to gray. Also seems really silly since they just updated their uniforms last year and green has always been in their color scheme (I like that logo better anyways).

Next is the Jazz who have music noted themselves and look great. I was afraid the Jazz were going to color overload but I like it. And to answer that report I linked to: Yes, they did. I love the road jerseys. The white version of the Jazz logo pops on it. Although, I do find it weird each set emphasizes a different color scheme. The whites seem to favor green and the roads highlight blue and yellow. Hey, smoke'em if you got them, right. It might be smart in the long run because then could move to a green alt or yellow alt. They've got some option with all those colors.

And finally we have the Clippers. Just some tweaking with added piping. I do like the new red with the Los Angeles script. But seriously after reading this article on Donald Sterling's latest thoughts, who cares. As Pirates fan, I can honestly say the Nuttings aren't the worst owners in pro sports. Go Bucs!

More NFL Rankings tomorrow!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Ranking NFL Logos: #28 Falcons

You know, sometimes when I first see a changed logo, I get all excited and think it's such an upgrade over the previous version. Then time passes and as I see it more, it's luster wears off. Then I begin to hate said logo. Case in point, the Falcons. When they debuted the new version, I thought they nailed it. It looks more like an "F". It's meaner looking. More colorful.

But then I started to waver, a lot. And it really came to a head when the Falcons did what so many other teams have done, they throw on a throwback uniform. And after seeing that, it was all clear to me. That's what the Falcons should look like. That is a top 5 uniform. The striping is gorgeous. The red on the jerseys pop out at you. The red helmet has the perfect contrast with the black logo. The logos on the shoulders perfectly compliment the logos on the helmet. It has everything. But sadly, they only wear the throwback two times a year.

If you compare the current to the old, it's no contest. I understand why the Falcons moved away from the old set. The old red helmet set looked like the Georgia Bulldogs, even more so when the Bulldogs decided to look like the old Falcons with their black ensemble (UG did that way, way after the Falcons changed). So they had to evolve. But when all the Vick shit hit the fan, that was the perfect time to move away from that and restore a pre-Vick look. Go back to a time before your quarterback was a full blown dog fighter. There is still time for that. Hey at least we get to see the throwbacks twice a year. All year would be better.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Ranking NFL Logo's: #29 Detroit Lions

This is not going to be long entry. The Lions did what a some teams decide to do, change when there was no need. The lions had a perfectly good logo, and chose to first add black with made no sense and in turn transformed their uniforms into the Carolina Panther 2. Then they go and add details to the previous, which was not needed. Shame, shame. They had a perfectly iconic logo. It was so simple it was perfect. I didn't need claws, an eye, and fur patterns to realize that I was looking at a lion. Just one of the many reasons this franchise hasn't won anything. I didn't mind the change in fonts and if they wanted to tweak the number font, that's fine. But, come on. Seriously. They needed to add that crap. Especially, when you are looking at their helmets on the field, you can't see the details. What's wrong with the silver and blue?...nothing.

Seriously, was the old lion not "liony" enough?

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Ranking NFL Logo's: #30 Titans

Warning video has sound.

Hey, hey. I got my new toys. I was playing all day and came up with that video for the logos. As you can see my #30 ranked team is the Titans. I find a few things wrong with the Titans logo. One, the flames. Do we need them? I say no. And why have blue flames. If you are going to go with fire, I would think you would want bright blazing fire. Not simmering flicker flames that you might find on your common gas stove in the kitchen. You are playing football not simmering Hamburger Helper. Next, they kept the Oilers colors. Shame on them. If you are going to take the time to completely move a team and change it's identity, go all the way. Plus, it robbed Houston from bringing back their sweet former look. Finally, this is one of those logos that was kind of cool when it debuted, but now it's past it's prime. And not just the logo but the whole Titans look in general. It's dated. And the solid baby blue uniforms are awful. I'm not a fan of solid color uniforms in general, but that one is real bad.

So now that I have my new toys, here are a couple ideas for a changes. On one I dropped the flames and made it a shield and the other i took the current helmet, flipped it to baby blue, and altered the emblem.

What do you think? Not bad for my first stab at doing this.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

NFL Primary Logo Rankings: #31 Texans

I have never really got into the Texans since they came into the league. To me, I forget that they are a part of the NFL. They really haven't done much since becoming the 32nd franchise in 2002. Although that could change this year. They keep coming up as the team to look out for...for 3 straight years. And still nothing. In their defense, they have the Colts and Peyton Manning in their division. The Jaguars and Titans too. All 3 have been legit Super Bowl contenders or playoff teams every year since the Texans joined the league. I think my biggest disappointment in their look is twofold. One, they chose a name that was already used by an NFL franchise, the Dallas Texans who then became the Kansas City Chiefs. And two, I loved, loved, loved the old Houston Oilers logo and uniforms. The baby blue, one of the best helmets ever, Warren Moon, and the run and shoot offense. Loved it! I wanted them to be the Oilers again. When I was a kid, I fell in love with two team logos: the New England Patriots and the Houston Oilers (I grew up in Pittsburgh Steelers' country but that team just didn't resonate with me. I don't know why, they just didn't.) So I had two teams I was being pulled in by (well, three. I also liked the 49ers but I was a kid and they had Montana and Rice and were winning Super Bowls. I also liked the gold and red and they're were beasts on Super Tecmo Bowl. But that didn't last long.) So after much long debate, one of the worst defeats a team could go through, and the drafting of a player who was my boy after watching him in college, the New England Patriots became my team. And I'm glad I did. I couldn't have stomached when the Oilers left and then giving me the Texans.

In the reincarnation of Houston football. I have three problems with the Texans logo. One, at first glance, what the hell is it? You eventually get it's a bull. Two, it's really hard to try yo give a 2D logo and 3D effect. Slanting and proportions of each side are the way to do it but when you try to do it too much it looks awkward. And three, red, white, and blue colors plus a recycled original. You chose the same color scheme as 4 other teams in the league already.  If you were going to go with those colors, at least match it to your city's flag. Sorry Houston, but it could have been better. But beggars can't be choosers for you. You have to love this team and from what I've seen you do. Good for you...

2010 Uniform: Home, Road, and Alternate

The Texans have been pretty much rolling with the same designs since their inception. Although at the first official unveiling (the video is the first the rally where they announced the team name. Could funny things from it. Bob McNair talked about the will wear Battle Red and the team wore blue, He said he chose something as a proud Texan, to represent all of Texas. I think the Cowboys might be scared by that. Or they just build the holy mecca of football stadiums. And a side note, a Skittle commercial ran before the video and it had a grown up Jake Berman from Little Giants. He called for the Annexation of Puerto Rico play in the movie or "Fumblerooski"), the team showed a white helmet but later changed it to the nave blue. Also some teams just look better in a certain set of uniforms. The Texans look really sharp in their red alternates. One of the better alternate uniforms in the league. It should maybe be their actual home uniform instead of the blue. Although the all red is fugly. Uniform wise, I was hard on them but it's really not that bad of a total look. Could be better though.

Monday, August 9, 2010

NFL Primary Logo Rankings: #32 Browns

The poor city of Cleveland. I hate ranking them last after what they have been through lately ("I'm taking my talents to South Beach"). But, with that said I have to put them last in the logo ranking because well they don't really have one. That is what they use. Their helmet. Really? That's all you got? It's not like they don't have options. They have a their dog face logo. They tried a "B" logo with striping (under the crazy dog logo). Both okay but I can see why they didn't quite stick. Well, I guess I shouldn't say that. The dog face is one they currently sort of use but it's really not that good. Anyways, the Browns have pretty much just used the helmet as their logo for 25 years. The sad part is they could be top 5 if not #1. They used to have a "brownie" elf guy logo that was just fantastic. Does that logo any way say tough, macho, dog pound, intimidating, or any other adjective a football team wants to say. No, but it is sooooooo awesome. This could be the Boston Celtics logo of the NFL. And you know what, the Browns really haven't won anything since they ditched the elf so it's time to bring back that Cleveland Browns magic.

Uniforms for 2010: Home, Road, Throwback

Their also seems to be the possibility for brown on brown, white on white, and they have worn orange pants before but I think the Mangenius wanted to go with the brown pants. I really like the Browns on-field look. They are a top 5. It's original, iconic, and just plain works. Literally the Browns are the only team that openly and passionately use the color brown. More power to them. But no logo means you get ranked last when it comes to a logo ranking list.

Not to rub salt in a wound but remember this? Jerk...

Friday, August 6, 2010

Who Are We? Not the Devil Rays, for sure...

The Tampa Bay Rays. It's been 2 years now since the dropped the "devil" from their names and decided to be known as just the Rays. Since then, they seem a little confused on finding exactly how they want to be identified. I get the play of the name. Florida has sun and the sun makes rays (a play I find a little strange for a team that plays indoors in what most consider the worst baseball stadium in MLB. The get no rays in there). I will give them credit. they are trying to make it work in Tampa. Why Tampa isn't behind them fully, I'll never know. As a Pirates fan, I would kill to get that team in the Black and Gold (Some sports writer wrote an article about that a couple months ago that MLB should fire everyone in the Pirates organization an then move the Rays to Pittsburgh and let that team play as the Pirates in the best ballpark in MLB. It begs for the big stage). Dreaming. Dreaming. And I'm back. Anyways, the rays went from this to their current version. They promptly made a World Series appearance. I'm of the thinking that the green color scheme they had before was a very good look. Also because green is soooo underplayed in MLB. Literally the Oakland A's are the only other team that uses it. So let's breakdown the Rays uniform combos:
1. Home white
2. Road Gray
3. Blue Alternate
4. Baby Blue Alternate

First thing I've noticed is they are totally committed to being the Rays. It's on all 4 of the jerseys. Where they seem confused it what to do with their alternate logos. Are they the sun rays or the "devil" rays? The fish ray logo is a jersey sleeve patch on the home and road uniforms. The sun ray logo is apart of the Rays logo and is in the outfield on their "grass" turf. So which are you, Rays? And they have a nice TB logo, why not use it more? So here are my quick fixes.

1. Choose an alt logo and stick with it. Fish, Sun, or the TB.
2. Come up with a Tampa Bay full logo to use on the road jersey.
3. One of the alternates, I'd say the baby blue, put the one of the alt logos, TB, sun, or ray, on the left chest.
4. Figure out where to better utilize the use of gold. They have it in there. It could be used more effectively.
5. Move the team to Pittsburgh and become the Pirates. No, actually I'd like to see one of their alt logos used on a cap to break up the monotony of the TB hat. It's nice but it's about finding more choices to sell.

The Rays need to get it together because their time is now. They have the star players. They've been to the World Series. They are arguably better than the Yankees and the Red Sox who are bigger payroll teams. The Rays are in the spotlight and they need to shine with their look.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Who Are We? The Blue Jays?

There are some things that don't make sense with baseball uniforms when it comes to colors in team names. The White Sox don't wear white socks. The Red Sox don't wear red socks. But the Blue Jays seemed confused and I can't forgive them for their mistake. I have no problems with them adding black. In fact it's actually more realistic to what a blue jay looks like. But here in lies the problem; the breadown of the uniform combos:
1. Home white 2. Road gray 3. Black Alternate
4. Throwback Alternate

See the dominating tone. It's black. Except for the throwback alternate. But then they go and over do it with the blue. Baby blue is the new black. Seems like evey team is trying to throw it in somewhere. What the big shame is is there was nothing wrong with their previous 2 uniforms( 1992 WS, Clemens era. This logo was kind of stupid). Personally, I hate the overdone beveling on the lettering. They had a classic font. That's what the Blue Jays look like to me. So, here are my quick fixes:

1. Flip the primary colors. More blue less black. Hell, even change black to navy blue.
2. Drop the beveling from the letters.
3. Change the throw back blue to the version they wore in 1992.
4. Bring back the blue and white hat. It could be their niche.
5. Embrace the Canadian leaf again. As the only Canadian team left in MLB, own it.

Overall, I really don't like the new blue jay face with the "J" logo. The old school blue jay with the little red maple leaf, and the stripe style font need to come back. Until the Blue Jays embrace who they are, they are stink-o looking. My feelings on them, they are going to be a while before they can pass the Yanks, Red Sox, and Rays for a World Series. At least come up with a look that will sell gear. As of now, I wouldn't buy any of their new stuff. Which is sad, because I would love to have some their stuff. The Joe Carter walk off home run was one of my favorite baseball memories. I could get behind that. Right now, not so much...

Sunday, August 1, 2010

It's Been A While...MLB Teams Who Can't Find Themselves.

Yes, I know. It has been a while. Let me just say it's not that I'm too busy or don't want to work on this blog. It's actually the opposite. I am very close to getting a new computer with all the Adobe software I can handle. And I really want to get it so I can edit and show my thoughts, just not type them out and let anyone reading guess what I am talking about. My passion is still there, I just got frustrated with my product. I want it to be better, a lot better. So since I'm close to getting what I want, I'm ready to dive back in. So, with no further delay, here is my new project. I have been looking around at what teams are doing, and what they have been wearing. I've been watching baseball and soccer all summer. While watching some baseball, I have a few teams in mind that just don't seem to know what to do with themselves. Their looks are confusing, and just don't make any sense. And as I looked there are teams like this in all the upper echelons of pro sports in America. I'm going to start with the MLB teams since it's their season right now.

The first team I've picked to do this is the Washington Nationals. The Nats, well they are all over the place. First thing, lets breakdown all their current combos (note these are from the MLB galleries so you might have to scroll through to see what I'm talking about):
1. Home whites
2. Road grays
3. Red Alt
4. Blue DC Alt

When you look at all those combos, there are so many mismatches in identities it's scary. The home whites have the classic curly W logo, with a modern looking font on the jerseys. The road grays and red alts look good from the front and almost completely match for what would be a great look. Then you see the backs and they use the modern font for the numbers. All 3 have the the modern, solid colored DC logo sleeve patch. Then lastly the the blue DC alt. Not much to describe for those besides awful. Why they want to throw a Stars and Stripes theme into the logo is quite the conundrum. Especially since they use the regular DC logo on their other jersey sleeves. One a side note, the blue jersey is the only one that actually looked respectable with those MLB American Pride hats they made every team wear including Toronto, but wisely made them in Canada's colors.

The Nationals don't seem to know whether they want a modern look or a classic look. Or if they want to be identified as the team name, city, or city nickname. Here are my quick fixes, without a major overhaul to all.

1. Use the solid DC logo on the home red cap paired with the modern number font.
2. Keep the road grays with the navy hat and use the curly W logo. Drop the modern fonts and use a plain block number scheme.
3. Burn the Stars and Stripes DC crap or just put the regular DC logo instead.
4. Drop Nationals name all together and just rename them the Washington Strasburgs or drop Washington and call them the Strasburg Nationals. Sounds like a city right?
5. Move back to Montreal and re-become the Expos. At least they looked cool.

The Nationals have a lot of potential with their uniforms but they've just thrown too many elements together. If you are going to have the biggest name in baseball on your team, fix it so you sell even more gear.