Nike Detroit Lions Uniforms: Threat or Menace?

>> 1.30.2012

The Detroit Lions' Nike Pro Bowl Vapor Jet gloves

Nike premiered their Vapor Jet NFL gloves at the 2012 Pro Bowl. These are the first taste of the new 2012 uniforms that Nike will be supplying all teams, and . . . yikes. Those hoping Nike just translates the current classy, unmistakably Lions uniforms—like me—must immediately begin flop-sweating. From the official @usnikefootball Twitter account:

nike_football_twitter“Just the beginning.” Sends a chill down my spine. “If you were feelin the new Cleats and Gloves tonight,” Nike says, “download the Nike BOOM app fast for the next exclusive reveal.” Love that they had Suh model the BOOM app, but I’m mortified by what they’re going to do to the Lions image.

I know a lot of you out there don’t get my whole uniform fascination, but it’s important. We’re fans of the Detroit Lions, a franchise with eighty-three years of tradition. Everyone loves the Lions throwbacks—but you know what? Our “throwbacks” are as old as anyone’s and they’re still recognizable as Lions uniforms.

As legendary and venerable as the Packers franchise is, when they go to their primordial closet they don these eye-bleeding monstrosities:

green_bay_packers_throwback_uniforms My eyes! The goggles . . . they do nothing!

Not only are those duds hideous, they're totally urecognizable as belonging to the Green Bay Packers.

Except for one weirdo year the Lions hired Indiana University's coach and he forced red uniforms on the team, the Detroit Lions uniforms have been unmistakably the Detroit Lions uniforms for the better part of a century. The formula is simple: Honolulu blue plus silver.

Sure, maybe you add or remove some stripes, some trim, some black or gray or white, but the basic formula never changes. The result is both classic and iconic, modern and timeless. The current home unis are great, and the away whites are some of the best-looking uniforms on the planet. I mean, come on, here’s my authentic Matthew Stafford home jersey:


It’s gorgeous. It doesn’t need mesh patterns or interlocking filigreed zigzags or faux carbon fiber textures or Serengeti-themed artwork inlaid in mesh on the back. It doesn’t need 67 seams holding together 23 patches of various size, shape, and contrasting color. It doesn’t need to be a canvas for some Nike design team’s furious ideation brainstorm.

It just needs to be Honolulu Blue and silver.

Tell that to Nike on Twitter at @usnikefootball.


Anonymous,  January 31, 2012 at 1:21 AM  

Good luck with your lawn. I hope those damn kids stay off it!

lionthetiger,  January 31, 2012 at 9:28 AM  

They may take our lives, but they'll never take... OUR JERSEYS!!!! or something like that.

Flamekeeper_Ty,  January 31, 2012 at 10:32 AM  

YES! Exactly like that. Dutch Clark wore Honolulu Blue and Silver, so does Matthew Stafford. Don't mess with it.

SmittyDMR,  January 31, 2012 at 10:42 AM  

The one thing I would like to see brought back are the Honolulu Blue pants in the away uniform. Nike doesn't disappoint so who knows what they may come up with.

Anthony,  January 31, 2012 at 10:42 AM  

Sadly Ty, this is a battle we are going to lose because the NFL got greedy and went with the highest bidder.

So help me, if they do those Pro Combat jerseys I'm going to lose my mind.

P.S. What's the over/under on how long before the Lions pants have tails on them?

Anonymous,  February 1, 2012 at 8:39 AM  

I'm with you, I love the lions uniforms, current and past. I have to disagree on your take with packers throwbacks. They are very different than the current uni's, but they are cool as hell. I honestly don't think I've met a throwback I didn't like though - even the broncos brown and yellow stripes, and the eagles blue and yellows.

Gn02,  February 6, 2012 at 1:33 AM  

Get rid of the black in the unis

Anthonymaceri,  March 31, 2012 at 3:29 PM  

I agree with that one. The away Lion uniforms need to change. They need a Honalulu pant, preferably without a strip, solid blue pant, or a solid stripe. Personally, I like the early 80's era home Lions uniforms with the silver letters and stripes on the sleeves. Those were sick!!

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