After weeks of speculation and great anticipation, Nike revealed its 2012 line of NFL jerseys today in Brooklyn, NY. The line officially goes on sale during the weekend of the NFL Draft, which takes place April 26-28, 2012.
Among those duds that saw the least amount of change, the Pittsburgh Steelers new uniforms include only subtle tweaks.
First, and foremost, the owners had final say on any official aesthetic changes, and proposed updates to jersey designs (which few teams requested) had to be NFL approved and fall within standard league guidelines.
Additionally, most fans were wise enough to already be anticipating a practical mirror-image product, holding true to the striking look that has served the franchise well for many years. For teams so steeped in tradition, odds of change were already minimal, despite the wildest dreams of creative graphic designers.
While the Seattle Seahawks jerseys showcased the most radical transformation, per changes requested by the team itself, the bulk of updates for other squads included the list of improvements boasted by the new line, labeled "The Nike Elite 51."
Functional changes are supposed to make the jersey stronger (up to 50%) and lighter, revolving around lighter fabrics, a more contoured fit and four-way stretch materials, and a list of other technological advancements that can be seen here, and which are outlined below (from Nike website):
- LIGHTER - The Nike jersey and pant, wet or dry are lighter than previous versions
- ZONED MESH VENTILATION – Provides cooling zones for optimal thermoregulation
- ZONED STRENGTH - High tenacity, stretch material, for lightweight lockdown strength.
- CUT FOR MOBILITY – Four-way stretch, hydrophobic materials enable range of motion wet or dry.
- STRETCH TWILL NUMBERS – Four-way stretch even on numbering system
- CUSTOMIZABLE BASELAYER PADDING – Nike Pro Hyperstrong baselayer with integrated lightweight, Deflex padding offering customizable flexible protection.
- DEFLEX PADDING - Lightweight, flexible impact protection integrated into top “hit zone” areas
- ALUMINUM D-RING BELT - Aircraft-grade aluminum D-ring belt reduces weight.
Let's take a closer look at the Pittsburgh Steelers new garments.