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Buffalo Bills jersey numbers

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Are the Bills getting new numbers on their jerseys?  Their practice shirts now have the Jim Kelly-era Champion-style numerals, notable for the diagonal 2.

 

I hope this isn't just a "training camp" thing.

 

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This style above is superior to the numbers they've used since the Bledsoe-era Bills disaster uniforms.

 

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If they stick with the number style above I wouldn't be surprised, but I would be a little bummed after seeing these practice shirts!

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Have no idea, but it would be awesome if they switched backed to the Champion-era numbers. I hope it's real.

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The 5 is not the Champion 5.  The Champion 5 doesn't have the 45-degree angle in the middle-left part.

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7 minutes ago, BringBackTheVet said:

The 5 is not the Champion 5.  The Champion 5 doesn't have the 45-degree angle in the middle-left part.

That detail is fine with me.  The rest of the numerals (and the 5 for that matter) are an improvement over the over-serifed serpentine block numerals of the current era Bills.Insert image from URL

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5 minutes ago, Buffalo said:

That detail is fine with me.  The rest of the numerals (and the 5 for that matter) are an improvement over the over-serifed serpentine block numerals of the current era Bills.Insert image from URL

 

You sure you know what "serpentine" font is?

 

Serpentine-Font.jpg

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Buffalo doing this would be on par with the Colts going back to their Unitas-digits 👍👍👍

 

qAeRmrM.png

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The Bills have been using High School USA Sans for their Training Camp uniforms since 2014:

20140721_jla_ah8_017.jpg.0.jpg

vfughtpdbkqcwbuutbrr.jpg

 

If the Bills actually were to go back to Champion numbers, though, it'd work well.

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Those don’t even look like Nike shirts so nothing official, most likely the brought a bunch of blue t shirts to a local t shirt place and ordered them to be screen printed with what ever block font they had

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Champion numbers look bad with as many outlines as the bills have, and would contrast with the old-school look they're trying to have.  The Champion numbers debuted what - early 80s with the Bengals?  Just guessing there, but definitey not the 60s or early 70s like how the Bills are trying to look.

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To confirm: Bills, Bengals and Jets were the only teams to use Champion numbers, ya?

 

3 Greatest Quarterbacks in Cincinnati Bengals History

353716.jpeg

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Posted (edited)
10 hours ago, BringBackTheVet said:

Champion numbers look bad with as many outlines as the bills have, and would contrast with the old-school look they're trying to have.  The Champion numbers debuted what - early 80s with the Bengals?  Just guessing there, but definitey not the 60s or early 70s like how the Bills are trying to look.

Champion started making NFL jerseys in 1988.

 

6 hours ago, Cujo said:

To confirm: Bills, Bengals and Jets were the only teams to use Champion numbers, ya?

Falcons, Colts, and Saints did as well:

football-atlanta-falcons-deion-sanders-i

hi-res-ddc74b50b2387cfcd19cc6c28b7b403c_

5897b7997d798.image.jpg?resize=1200,840

Edited by packerfan21396
Fact checked by BBTV

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12 minutes ago, packerfan21396 said:

Champion started making NFL jerseys in 1989.

 

Falcons, Colts, and Saints did as well:

football-atlanta-falcons-deion-sanders-i

hi-res-ddc74b50b2387cfcd19cc6c28b7b403c_

5897b7997d798.image.jpg?resize=1200,840

Falcons is close but look at #78, it’s a different number font

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11 minutes ago, dont care said:

Falcons is close but look at #78, it’s a different number font

The Falcons had Champion jerseys from 1990-91, but it's possible that #78 had a different brand jersey than the the other guys in the picture.  #78 also has thicker red borders than everyone else; compare his 8 with #80 and #82.  This is super common before the NFL had a league-wide uniform supplier.

 

Another picture:

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Elway '86. 👀

24605-list.jpg

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15 minutes ago, Cujo said:

Elway '86. 👀

The 1986 Denver Broncos:

s-l1600.jpg

Elway must be wearing a Champion jersey or local shop printed jersey, while the team should be wearing Russell.

 

Again, when the team supplied the uniforms instead of the league, you have a few guys wearing slightly different jerseys.

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2 hours ago, packerfan21396 said:

Champion started making NFL jerseys in 1989.

 

This is being sold as a 1987 game worn jersey:  Interesting that it has the Champion number font but not the standard rounded letter font.
iXRK9QX3ARfHPuZceBXo7hqZSin0SxksPjnhmzOtBruce-Mesner-1987-Game-Used-Buffalo-Bill

 

 

This is from 1988 per https://www.buffalobills.com/news/important-dates-in-bills-history-nov-20-1988-fandemonium-bills-win-afc--18110584

 

gefbybgnonxnuwoewupb.jpg

 

This is allegedly 1987.  I say "allegedly" because maybe they're using a stock photo:https://billswire.usatoday.com/2017/01/23/flashback-to-1987-bills-season-brings-hope-30-years-later/

gettyimages-282118.jpg?w=779&h=467&crop=

 

 

 

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2 hours ago, BringBackTheVet said:

This is being sold as a 1987 game worn jersey:  Interesting that it has the Champion number font but not the standard rounded letter font.

 

This is from 1988 per https://www.buffalobills.com/news/important-dates-in-bills-history-nov-20-1988-fandemonium-bills-win-afc--18110584

 

This is allegedly 1987.  I say "allegedly" because maybe they're using a stock photo:https://billswire.usatoday.com/2017/01/23/flashback-to-1987-bills-season-brings-hope-30-years-later/

via the Bills' website:

nh3kairwl3mwdvuhethb.jpg

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It's possible Champion started making jerseys for the Bills in 1987 as #73 appears to have a Champion jersey, but it wasn't until 1989 that the entire team was outfitted in Champion.  The Gridiron Uniform Database has the Champion logo appearing in 1988 on the Bills, and I must've missed it when I was going year to year.  My assumption would be the same as GUD's in that the partnership with Champion started in 1988.  Dating on auctions is not always accurate, as Mesner is seen in the 1987 photo wearing a Sand-Knit jersey like the rest of the team.  Another example, this Sand-Knit jersey is dated 1986-89 even though Harmon's seen here wearing Champion in 1989.

 

Also, a reverse image search gets to the Getty Images page giving the alleged 1987 Coach Levy picture a caption dating it 1992.

 

I apologize for being off by a year.

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2 hours ago, packerfan21396 said:

nh3kairwl3mwdvuhethb.jpg

It's possible Champion started making jerseys for the Bills in 1987 as #73 appears to have a Champion jersey,

 

Kelly appears to also have Champion digits -- his tv numbers check out.

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1981 Jets. A little wider, and jersey is unbranded. Unlikely that it’s Champion, but maybe Champion bought someone’s jersey business and inherited the font?
 

nyse.jpg

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1 hour ago, BringBackTheVet said:

1981 Jets. A little wider, and jersey is unbranded. Unlikely that it’s Champion, but maybe Champion bought someone’s jersey business and inherited the font?

The deep dive into Champion NFL jersey history gets difficult before 1988.  The only indication of manufacturer becomes the jock tag of a game worn jersey because there's no logo on the shoulder.  However, I believer that those are in fact Champion, and I would go so far as to say that in the case of the Jets, they've had Champion jerseys since 1974.

 

The Jets changed their uniform from this in 1973:

flushing-ny-new-york-jets-quarterback-jo

to this in 1974:

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which looks to be our font.

 

When I tried to find some game worn jerseys, I found this one supposedly from that year:

669.H8H_0726_med.jpeg

and the tag says:

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Champion.

 

So congrats, BBTV, we were both wrong, Champion NFL jerseys can be traced back to 1974, possibly earlier with a different font, but I haven't dug hard enough to know.

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