The Bills showed off their new threads on Friday night, showing off a new look that they hope will come off with a new trend – winning.
The uniform comes complete with familiar royal blue return as well as the white helmet. The trademark charging buffalo also is present in the uniform as well.
The charging blue buffalo with the red speed stripe, which has been the club’s most identifiable mark since its inception in 1973, appears on every article of the Bills new uniforms except the socks.
It will also continue to appear on each side of Buffalo’s helmet, but it will also make its first ever appearance on the back of the jersey above the player’s name and on each hip of the pants.
“We listened to our fans,” Bills CEO Russ Brandon stated. “We have done a lot of research on this is a long process to go through. We just wanted to get back to our storied tradition while we still highlight our brand.”
“One of the things we heard consistently was there was really no identifying mark on our jersey,” said Bills Senior Vice President of Marketing and Broadcasting Marc Honan. “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 are only one of three teams in the league to incorporate their team logo above the nameplate on the back of the jersey joining the Cardinals and Vikings.
A second element in the uniform that is new is the presence on the jersey of the team name just below the V-neck of the jersey on the front where ‘BILLS’ is stitched.
“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,” said Honan.
The white numbers on the blue jersey and the blue numbers on the white jersey have always been outlined in red and that continues with the current edition, but there is also a thin navy blue outline outside the red outline. The purpose is to make the jersey numbers stand out more prominently on television.
With Reebok as a design partner in the process, there were also some high tech components to the 2011 jerseys. The player jerseys are made of stretch mesh, a Reebok fabric that provides players with superior breathability and better range of motion.
“Those jerseys actually cool players down a lot more,” said Bills equipment manager Dave Hojnowski. “That’s the evolution. The material stretches a little more. It’s a little more breathable and they’re trying to pull more of that moisture away from the body.”
“The players have been excited about the new uniforms,” said Brandon. “We’ve had to go through some TV testing at the league level and the players that have seen them from a look and performance standpoint and have been very excited about it. I think the players are going to be fired up and we now know that our fans are very fired up.”