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Now that I've seen all of the regular sets (I think) for this inaugural season with Adidas, I'll share my own opinions (which aren't very weighted in CFL history at all, but rather just a casual observer across the river from Ontario).

 

In general, while I'm glad that Adidas didn't use any of its new ShockWeb templates and limited its branding to the nape of the jersey and traditional spot on the pants, I'm disappointed in how templated most of these uniforms are. The side panels, yoke, and awkward sleeve color-blocking suggest this was more of a paint-by-numbers approach than Adidas taking the time to create some unique and timeless looks for what is now its flagship (Canadian) football league. Sure, they didn't template everything with 3-stripes or weird prints (a la college basketball) or oversized logos (a la college football), but I was expecting a stronger initial effort. Even if the CFL isn't a highly-watched league, it is a historic league, and with the new league logo seeming to suggest that the CFL wants to appeal to a Web 3.0 generation, you would think that Adidas might try to appeal to that generation with strong visual identities (for better or worse). I guess only the BC Lions were on board with that vision.

 

Now, team-by-team:

 

BC Lions: I admire what they were trying to do, as far as a complete redesign in line with the aforementioned Web 3.0 outreach of this new CFL, but I don't think it was executed well. The tramp-stamp is bad; the LIONS chest wordmark is lifeless; the gradient for the home numbers is the only extension of the Michigan Panthers helmet logo and stripe but can only be noticed in close-up photos; and I think, so far, the lack of any gunmetal grey is a missed opportunity, as that was a unique color in football uniforms that I thought worked great as an alternate. Hopefully they'll refresh that Signature Series uniform with the new visual identity because I'd like to see it return. As for the yoke, the sleeve stripe bisecting it seems like a unique design element that works in giving the jerseys some much-needed personality, but the way the yoke gets blocked out in the back thanks to the player name looks bad. I'm also not feeling black only being used on the away jersey with the wordmark and player name--it clashes. Also, what connection does this franchise have with the Michigan Panthers? Or did they just think this concept looks good?

 

Edmonton Esks: With a Washington Redskins-esque name and Green Bay Packers-esque uniform, this has always struck me as an oddly American-looking franchise. I'm glad that they tried to distinguish themselves from the Packers by losing the collar, although the new sleeve stripes look so awkward all alone there. In general, I prefer numbers without outlines, especially for a league trying to rebrand itself for the Web 3.0 generation, so I wish Edmonton would have stripped down that way in addition to the sleeve stripes, with the chest wordmark receiving a similar treatment. Now that they've distanced themselves from the Packers, it seems time for Edmonton to choose a new nickname as well, to avoid any ongoing Redskins situation. They could keep the alliteration with a new nickname and keep the logo, but I think I'd prefer a new identity and more interesting logo myself.

 

Calgary Stampeders: What a mess. 3 entirely different helmets, 3 entirely different jerseys, and 3 pants with a wordmark down the leg. Red, white, and black is one of the easiest color schemes to make look good, which makes Calgary's visual identity all the more disappointing. The black jersey is probably the least bad of the bunch, while honestly the red jersey's black side panels and sleeve insert have a visual slimming effect that make that jersey look more like women's eveningwear than a football uniform.

 

Saskatchewan Roughriders: I love that Saskatchewan uses their spelling test of a province name as a chest wordmark, all the more so considering that they're a member of the Roughriders motorcycle club that half the CFL seems to ride in. I actually appreciate that they cut down on the black trim, but I'd like to see the background of their logo used as an inspiration for some sleeve stripes--or at least a sleeve cap fill.

 

Winnipeg Blue Bombers: Blue and gold is one of the other color schemes that is easiest to make look good, so I'm glad that Winnipeg (mostly) succeeded. I can understand them using an outline for their numbers to go along with the retro look and to match the outline of their primary logo. The only blemish in this set is really the yoke on the away jersey. The player name also looks huge, and I'm not sure whether that's part of this Adidas template or something they could have avoided, but I'm not really liking it.

 

Hamilton Tiger-Cats: I'd like the number outline to have been removed along with the collar, but that's just my preference. As a note on CFL helmets in general, I've liked that the CFL seems to be a professional league where you can have 2 helmets, white helmets, and helmets with no stripe. Just something that comes off as quirky and Canadian to me rather than unprofessional, which some commenters get the impression of instead.

 

Toronto Argonauts: The legible chest wordmark is a huge improvement. Overall, a sharp use of the double blue, although I wish Toronto had taken the opportunity to refresh one of their beloved retro logos.

 

Ottawa REDBLACKS: Ottawa found a way to make a wordmark pants "stripe" even worse: use a hashtag. While I appreciate the flip in colors for the numbers, I'm bummed that Ottawa went with this templated fill for the side panels and lower half of the sleeves + sleeve insert. They're supposed to be the new, radical team, but now their jerseys look like Saskatchewan's and, even worse, the other red, black, and white team in the CFL. I actually liked the fact that the old jerseys were all black with red just used as piping for the side panels: it was a very minimalist, aggressive look that fit the ridiculous REDBLACKS identity while also seeming ahead of its time with the CFL's appeal to the Web 3.0 generation. I do have to say that I at least like that Ottawa seems to have gone with a two-tone sleeves stripe on their away jerseys, rather than using a single color to fill both the lower half of the sleeve stripe and the sleeve insert like they did with the home jersey.

 

Montreal Alouettes: This seems to be a love-it-or-hate-it uniform, huh? I've made it known that I'm in the latter camp. Too many outlines; an absurdly large chest wordmark blocked in by the rest of the jersey design; mismatching striping across the jerseys and pants; and a bad '90s-esque logo that would be in need of a refresh at a high school, let alone a CFL franchise. Montreal has a great color scheme, a unique nickname, and an interesting visual identity history both within its franchise and with Montreal in general, so why not do better?

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rnation.jpg

 

Doug: We at the REDBLACKS want pants with attitude. They're edgy, they're "in your face." You've heard the expression, "let's get busy"? Well, these pants get "biz-zay!" Consistently and thoroughly.

Gord: So they're proactive, eh?

Doug: Oh, God, yes. We're talking about a totally outrageous paradigm, dontcha know?

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1 hour ago, Cosmic said:

rnation.jpg

 

Doug: We at the REDBLACKS want pants with attitude. They're edgy, they're "in your face." You've heard the expression, "let's get busy"? Well, these pants get "biz-zay!" Consistently and thoroughly.

Gord: So they're proactive, eh?

Doug: Oh, God, yes. We're talking about a totally outrageous paradigm, dontcha know?

 

These pants are enough to make the whole league look like a joke...

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Are they the first sports team to have a # on their uniforms much less the pants outside of advertisements?

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While not a hashtag; the Philly Wings (now the New England Black Wolves) of the NLL had a special jersey with the players twitter handles on them:

 

 

lacrosse-twitter-jerseys1.jpeg

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Pardon the rambling...

 

BC: They went from having one of the best sets in the league to arguably the worst. The road jersey has far too little black given how prominent it is on the home. The tramp stamp sucks. The orange helmet blows, but the black one is kinda cool. The giggling lion needs an update, though. DOWNGRADE

 

Edmonton: No longer having 735 000 different striping patterns on the homes is a good change. The green collar looks out of place on the road. The black still looks out of place. Any idea if the green helmets are gone? UPGRADE

 

Calgary: The single-outlined, non-italicized numbers in the new font are nice, as are the red numbers on the road. The side panels, black helmets, and slabs of colour on the sleeves all suck. SLIGHT UPGRADE

 

Saskatchewan: Yay for less black, boo for the crappy template. Let's get some actual stripes in here! SLIGHT UPGRADE

 

Winnipeg: Beautiful. I can take or leave the road yoke. UPGRADE

 

Hamilton: Yoga pants suck. Missed a chance to add a helmet stripe. Chest wordmark is too big. SLIGHT DOWNGRADE

 

Toronto: I've maintained that the Argos needed to do two things to perfect their look: add a helmet stripe and add a Cambridge Blue outline to the numbers. We got one of those. The new wordmark is a plus. SLIGHT UPGRADE

 

OTTAWA: The white, non-italicized numbers are a huge improvement. The template sucks and the hashtag swallows #sorrynotsorry SLIGHT UPGRADE

 

Montréal: Chest wordmark is still too big, silver remains unnecessary as ever, and that logo belongs in the ECHL. LATERAL MOVE

 

-----------------------

 

Overall: Six upgrades, two downgrades, and a lateral move. Several teams (Edmonton, Calgary, Saskatchewan, Ottawa) took steps to getting their looks where they should be, but didn't go far enough. Still, the league is gonna look better this season than it did last season.

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Montreal: Honestly, I like their uniforms.  They're unique and undoubtedly one of a kind, not just in the CFL, but probably all of football.  I have no problem with them sticking to what they have.  That being said, I'm really surprised they didn't change their look just to sell new gear since they didn't change last time around.

 

Toronto and Hamilton were smart to realize they have good looks and didn't need to make any major changes.  I like the addition of the blue outline on the numbers for the Argos, but dislike the loss of the pant stripes for the Ti-Cats.

 

Ottawa:  It's not a bad uniform, but it's the same template as Calgary and Saskatchewan.  It's a slight downgrade just for that reason.  The RNation hashtag is ridiculous, though.  I suppose it's a way to try to get the twitter generation to get excited about the team.  I know that in some places, the CFL crowd is old and getting older, and needs to get younger.  Not sure that is the way to do it, though.

 

Winnipeg:  Good and bad  The good, is in their home uniform.  Their road uniform is ruined by the shoulder yoke.  Nonetheless, still an upgrade over last year's.

 

Saskatchewan:  It's a cookie cutter uniform, but it beats last season's by a mile.  

 

Calgary: Basically last year's fitted into the new template.  They should drop the black road helmet.  Doesn't look right at all when the rest of the jersey is predominately red.  

 

Edmonton:  The road jersey is an absolutely huge upgrade over the old.  I don't get the need for a shoulder yoke on a white jersey for any team.  The home is a lateral move.  

 

BC:  The jerseys themselves are pretty nice.  It's the best of both worlds I suppose, keeping the jersey predominately orange, while adding more black to go with the black helmet, which I'm fine with since they've wore a black helmet in the past.  Of course, the helmet design itself is stupid.  Hopefully, they come to their senses sooner, rather then later, and stick their actual logo on the helmet.  Oh yeah, the tramp stamp didn't work for the Green Riders and it certainly doesn't work for Lions.  Overall, the bad negates the good, so it's kinda of a meh.

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On 5/16/2016 at 9:26 PM, dont care said:

Are they the first sports team to have a # on their uniforms much less the pants outside of advertisements?

We've seen it on minor league one-offs and small name soccer teams, but nothing with as much TV exposure as the CFL (which, granted, isn't that much).

Bristol-City-16-17-Home-Kit%2B%25283%252

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Saw a new Tiger-Cats jersey in the wild today. It's not as bad as it looks in the pictures. Almost lateral.

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Watching Winnipeg on the field in Royal Blue... Wow, did they ever look good. As for the Alouettes new uni.... oh wait, they didn't change anything.

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35 minutes ago, Chewbacca said:

Watching Winnipeg on the field in Royal Blue... Wow, did they ever look good. As for the Alouettes new uni.... oh wait, they didn't change anything.

At least they kept the blue pants.

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2 hours ago, snowmobile said:

looks like BC is wearing their orange and white helmets with the dark jerseys tonight against Saskatchewan

 

Not to put too fine a point on it, but BC looks like crap.  SK is an improvement on their previous set...slightly.

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This is some next level bad right here.

Screen Shot 2016-06-12 at 12.19.52 AM.png

Screen Shot 2016-06-12 at 12.21.51 AM.png

Screen Shot 2016-06-12 at 12.22.52 AM.png

Screen Shot 2016-06-12 at 12.23.53 AM.png

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1 hour ago, nash61 said:

This is some next level bad right here.

Screen Shot 2016-06-12 at 12.19.52 AM.png

Screen Shot 2016-06-12 at 12.21.51 AM.png

Screen Shot 2016-06-12 at 12.22.52 AM.png

Screen Shot 2016-06-12 at 12.23.53 AM.png

I do not like that orange helmet at all with the whitened out logo, especially on a uniform that doesn't have white. As for the Lions uniform, if the nameplate didn't cut into the jersey, and if the numbers had white trim, their uniform would actually be decent. I also don't care for the pants. They need striping of some kind. As for Saskatchewan, for Christ's sake, why have they not gone to their throwbacks full time? Geez, I totally agree, these uniforms are brutal.

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Eh the only thing I really don't like about Saskatchewan is the side panel. Remove that and you have a pretty good uniform. The green is alittle to bright and obnoxious but hasn't it always been that shade?

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Wasn't BC's orange helmet previously shown with a white mask?

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