Who has the best helmets? I’m not talking about who your favorite team is. I’m talking NFL logos. Who has the best design? This is a question of art, color and general aesthetics. Some franchises have recently rebranded, trying to make a slicker more modern icon. While others embrace their history and stay classic. We all have our personal biases and I’m not trying to hide mine. I’d like to think I can be impartial but that is probably just a fantasy.
Enough talk! These are the cream of the crop, the bottom of the barrel and the hideous monsters we call NFL logos.
– Pittsburgh. Don’t ever change it. It’s perfect. Not a big fan of the team or their fans but the look is fierce.
– Dallas. Simple, elegant and understated. All words associated with the people of Texas.
– Green Bay. Respect. It takes balls to keep those awful colors. There is no NFL without that yellow helmet.
– Philadelphia. It’s still America. Got to give the eagle his props.
– Atlanta. Slightly abstract, great color palette, vaguely Mayan. I’m down.
– Chicago. Don’t let my buddies hear me say this. The Bears logo is solid.
– Oakland. The Black, the silver. The pirate look. This is everything. Makes me wish I grew up in the Bay Area/Los Angeles.
– New Orleans. Nowhere in sports does a team logo truly reflect the culture of the town as it does here. This is a perfect marriage.
– Detroit. Makes me smile just looking at it.
– San Fransisco. This seal is all over my memory of early NFL. That bright red mixed the metallic color just screams football.
– Minnesota. I don’t normally dig purple but that viking is such a powerful cartoon. You gotta love it.
– Los Angeles. The Ram image works in football and in the zodiac calendar. That’s a winner.
– Miami. It’s just kind of silly. Those colors paired with a very non-threatening creature. Not the best. I prefer the retro one where the dolphin is wearing a helmet.
– Arizona. I think the St. Louis Cardinals wore it better.
– Baltimore. I’m not scared of this bird. That’s the mascot they chose and it’s a little weird looking.
– New England. What’s wrong with that guy’s head? Does he have a tumor? And please don’t tell me that’s just his hat. Because if that is the case then take off the hat.
– Indianapolis. I’m all for streamline but there is almost nothing here. Just a horseshoe over the door for good luck.
– Buffalo. Colors work, but the streak dominates and the silhouette of the animal is somewhat shapeless.
– New York Giants. Is this even a logo? I call this a typeface (or font for those using the wrong word). Either way, they need help.
– Carolina. Expansion team madness. Too angular, not much to connect with.
– Cleveland. I enjoy old school but there is little to get pumped about. Maybe the Browns need to hire a Danish design firm to give them a facelift.
– Seattle. Not my favorite hues. Plus it is another strange looking bird. Boo.
– Washington. The logo and whole team name is offensive. I pray owner, Dan Snyder, will change it but he has said multiple times that he will not. That sucks and so does he. Change it already. I will trash Snyder every chance I get until he renames his team after something that isn’t a racial slur.
– Kansas City. Not as bad as Washington but now I think anything based on Native Americans is in bad taste. My apology to all the KC faithful at Arrowhead Stadium.
– Jacksonville. I really want to like this. It’s contemporary, it’s matte black and gold but it just doesn’t come together. The problem is that the logo has these strange blue accents that ruin everything.
– Cincinnati. Tiger stripes on the letter B? That’s all you got? Was this their first idea or what?
– Denver. A horse with orange hair. How could that not work? It doesn’t.
– Houston. Another superhero-esque effort. They added too much motion into the graphic. And the star over the eye just makes me think of Dallas.
– Tennessee. This looks like a bad rub-on tattoo from a vending machine at the roller rink.
– New York Jets. Where is the jet?
– San Diego. I like the bolts but what is the theme? Electricity? All I see is a reminder to pay my power bill.
– Tampa Bay. A Raiders rip off.
– Washington. Yes, they are listed twice because they deserve all the negative press they can get. Their jerseys have an ugly word printed all over them. I feel for the fan base who wants to support the squad without promoting outdated language.
The end. Leave me a quick comment telling me your top Good, Bad and of course Ugly. Can’t wait to hear your answers.
Eye of the beholder.