A New Look

The Patriots enter 2020 with a new look.

For just the third time in franchise history the Patriots jersey’s have seen a major change. Here is a look back at the most notable Patriots uniform changes.

The Patriots uniforms did not change much over the first three-plus decades of the franchise.  In all, the team consistently used red uniforms with white numbers and letters and white uniforms with red numbers and letters with opposite colored pants.  After 1972, a blue outline appeared around the numbers and lettering.

The one aspect of the jersey that did change over time was the placement of the stripes.  The first 1960 pre-season jerseys had no stripes at all.  Later in the inaugural season, stripes were introduced on the shoulder – blue and red for the white jerseys, white and blue for the red jerseys.  This style continued until 1969 when the stripes moved to the sleeve cuffs.  By 1973, the stripes moved over the bicep where they stayed until 1984, the team’s 25th anniversary season.  That year saw the team go back to the stripes on the shoulders, where they would remain until 1993.

A new owner in 1992 and a new head coach and quarterback in 1993 seemed like the perfect time to change up the team’s uniforms for the first time ever.  Owner James Orthwein and his marketing team reportedly gave NFL Properties only a few months to develop the new logo and uniform color scheme.

Harkening back somewhat to the 1979 design that was booed out of the stadium, the designers quickly developed what we now refer to as the “Flying Elvis” just in time for the 1993 season.  Orthwein also noted that the colonists’ opponents wore red during the Revolution, so it made sense to change out the primary jersey to blue. The new uniforms, royal blue with red numbers outlined in white and silver pants and helmets, were also introduced.  Silver, it was noted, was the hot color for sports uniforms at the time.

While Flying Elvis has remained the team’s logo since 1993, the uniforms would undergo significant changes. After the 1993 season, the seemingly hard-to-read red numbers on the royal blue jerseys were changed to white numbers outlined in red.  The blue jerseys also had white numbers outlined in red on the shoulders and the new logo on the sleeves.

A year after Robert Kraft bought the team in 1994, the uniforms underwent a slight overhaul for 1995.  The colors remained the same, but the names and numbers were italicized while the body of the jersey was given a pinstripe pattern.  The new jerseys also switched the position of the number and the logo on the arms, moving the number to the sleeves while the logo moved to the shoulders.

In 2000, the Patriots ditched the royal blue for the navy jerseys with the silver pants of the modern era. The look served the Patriots for 20 seasons and has become synonymous with two dynasties. At home, the navy tops featured silver stripes on the sleeves, as well as a Flying Elvis. On the road, white jerseys and navy pants were king, with blue stripes and numbers outlined in red.

The Patriots had only worn a blue-on-blue combination twice, in back-to-back homes games during the 2002 season. After losing both games by a combined 25 points, the team did not wear blue tops with blue pants until the 2016 Color Rush game, when the team debuted their navy Color Rush jerseys with navy pants.

The 2020 blue home uniforms are mostly identical to the “Color Rush” uniforms that debuted in 2016, with small tweaks made to the fonts on both the numbers and nameplates and red, white, and blue color-blocked socks making their debut. The navy-on-navy combination is then complete with bold red and white stripes on the pants and the sleeves, where the Patriots’ “Flying Elvis” logo is featured prominently.

While the home uniform is largely the same as the “Color Rush” design, the Patriots will have an entirely new look for away trips. The white road jerseys have gotten a fresh upgrade to match their blue siblings.

The blue pants will remain the same for both uniforms, but the away jersey is now complementary to the home with strong red and blue stripes on the shoulders and blue numbers outlined in silver and red.