Best NFL Logos and What They Represent
An NFL team’s logo or emblem is its most iconic identifier. All it takes is a glance at an iconic NFL logo like Chicago’s red bull or Miami’s leaping dolphin. You will instantly recognize which team that imagery signifies.
With 32 teams currently playing in the National Football League, NFL logos are far easier to remember and associate than the teams’ names. And with rumors that there are plans to add more teams to the roster in coming years, a relatable and recognizable NFL team logo will be all the more important then.
Now some teams like the Dallas Cowboys and the Oakland Raiders haven’t changed their logos since they joined the NFL. Others like the Washington Redskins and the LA Rams have worked quite the opposite. The ones who haven’t changed their logos, or have tweaked them only slightly, can cash in on the benefit of high recognition. Other teams though have to work hard to establish their logo’s recognition every time they change their logo.
Let us now look at the best sports logos of the teams and find out what these iconic NFL logos represent in 2022.
1- The NFL Logo History and Its Evolution
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Few sports associations or organizations have a logo as iconic as the NFL logo. Also called the NFL shield, the logo has been in use by the organization for a very long time. Designed in-house instead of opting for external logo design services, the current design is a cosmetic derivative of the original design created all those years ago.
Studies conducted on the topic report that an NFL team’s logo sees about 3.7 changes in its life on average. This comes out to about 14 years before a change is required, barring any extenuating circumstances such as in the case of the Washington Commanders (Previously known as the Washington Redskins). And it’s the same stats for the primary NFL shield as well. However, these stats do not include seasonal variants used for different Christmas or Halloween marketing ideas.
The NFL shield logo still looks quite similar to the one used at the NFL’s inauguration in 1920. Moreover, it has seen only minor changes through the years to modernize it. And it was in the 1940s that the logo came into its current form.
The word NFL was moved down, and the star was moved to the top of the shield. Finally, the stripes behind the NFL wording were made pink. Thus, the current logo came into being, which is still going strong eight decades later.
The first significant change in the logo came in 2008. The font was changed to make it sharper. The shield was made a little longer and thinner, and the color shades were darker. The stars on the top were reduced from 25 to 8.
Besides the primary NFL logo, various variants are also designed to commemorate various events. They include the NFL draft logo, the NFL 100 logo celebrating the centennial birthday of the League, and many others.
1.1- The NFL Logo Font
As for the typeface used for the various NFL or NBA logos, there is no standard NFL logo font. Every team uses their proprietary font for their wordmark logo, and therefore, no two symbols look the same.
2- National Football Conference
The National Football Conference or the NFC is one of the two associations of the NFL. Each of these NFL associations consists of sixteen teams. The teams in each association are divided into four divisions. Each division; east, north, south, and west; consist of four teams. It allows the NFC to schedule matches between its teams in shorter groups, allowing for better planning and scheduling.
The current defending champion for the NFC is the Los Angeles Rams. They defeated the San Francisco 49ers for the NFC Championship title in 2022, to take their fifth championship win.
3- NFC – East Division NFL Logos
The NFC- East division is one of the four divisions of the NFL’s National Football Conference. It consists of four teams, with the Dallas Cowboys as its current division champion.
This division has had all four of its teams win at least one Super Bowl. This is a feat unmatched by any other division in the entire National Football League. Moreover, the division is one of the most successful in the NFL as well. The teams have won 21 NFC Championship titles and 13 Super Bowl titles since the 1970s.
This division is a true NFL contender made up of four of the top ten ranked NFL teams.
3.1- Dallas Cowboys NFL logo
The Dallas Cowboys are one of the most successful NFL teams, with eight Super Bowl appearances and five wins. Additionally, they hold the most NFC Championship titles, with eight wins over the years.
Joining the NFL as an expansion team in 1960, they have seen massive success over the years. That resulted in the franchise being valued at $5 billion in 2018. It also holds the record for being named the highest valued NFL team for 12 years straight in 2018.
The Dallas Cowboys wordmark and logomark NFL logo is straightforward.
- At the time of the team’s induction into the NFL, their logo consisted of a solid blue five-pointed star. This logo was used from 1960-1963 when it was changed for the 1964 season.
- The new team NFL logo now featured a blue outline around the solid-blue star. They were separated by a thin white strip of white all around the design. The blue color used was also a few shades darker than the one used before, making the logo more prominent.
3.2- New York Giants NFL logo
The New York Giants are one of the oldest teams in the NFL, who joined in 1925 along with four other teams. They are the only one of those five teams still playing in the NFL. The New York Giants have the third-highest number of NFL Championship titles. They have won eight NFL titles over the years with 19 Championship appearances.
The oldest team in the Northeastern US has a famous rivalry with fellow division team Philadelphia Eagles. It has been called one of the best rivalries of this century, which has been going on since 1933.
The primary NFL logo for the New York Giants has seen many changes over nearly a century of gameplay, and has a design that is commonly associated with many classic MLB logos.
- After WW2, the New York Giants released their first logo in 1945, which featured a quarterback throwing the ball superimposed over the New York skyline.
- This NFL logo representing the team was modified in 1950. The image was blown up in size, the picture was sharpened for better clarity, and the colors were changed. The new logo now featured a blue and white quarterback on a similarly colored New York skyline over a red background. The logo was surrounded by the name of the team, the “New York Football Giants.”
- Today’s NFL team logo is a stylized lowercase NY, which was first used from 1961-1974, then a modified version of it was used for 1975.
- From 1976-1999, it featured the word “Giants” as its logo. That was changed to NY in 2000, using the design from 1961 and the color theme from the 1976 logo.
3.3- Philadelphia Eagles NFL logo
The Philadelphia Eagles have been a part of the NFL since 1933. They were formed to replace the then bankrupt Frankford Yellow Jackets. Over the years, many top-tier pro players have passed through the team ranks. Moreover, many of them have been inducted into the NFL’s Pro Football Hall of Fame.
Their highly-famed rivalry with the New York Giants is called one of the best rivalries in the NFL. And it has been going on for nearly a century. Additionally, their list of rivals includes illustrious teams such as the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Washington Commanders, and the Dallas Cowboys.
- Revealing their first official Philadelphia Eagles logo in 1948 after WW2, their logo featured an American bald eagle flying with a football clutched in its claws. The emblem was highly detailed and was done in a shade of green called the Kelly green. This logo was used from 1948-1995.
- The 1969-1972 era logo featured a more stylized image of the eagle.
- For the 1996 season, the logo was altered quite drastically. It now featured just the head of a bald eagle, colored in white and accented by silver and black. The image was designed to look less realistic and was drawn in the style of cartoons.
The last change made the logo better suited for the modern design aesthetic while still keeping to the roots of the initial logo. In case you’re intrigued by these animal-based logos, your’re not alone, because one of our favorites is the spidey logo.
3.4- Washington Commanders NFL logo
The Washington Commanders is one of the oldest teams in the NFL, formed in 1932. Initially called the Washington Redskins, the professional football team has played over a thousand games. It is also one of the five NFL teams to record more than 600 wins throughout their career.
They were the first NFL franchise to hire a marching band and devise an anthem. Their adoption of a native American caricature for their logo has drawn a lot of criticism, just like the symbol for the Chicago Blackhawks, once one of the more popular NHL logos. This shows the volatile nature of changing design aesthetics that can affect a logo design’s perception.
- Their first logo was revealed in 1935, which featured a Native American man. This version was used from 1935-1959, with the only change within that time in 1952. That is when the caricature of the native American man was given additional details.
- From 1960-1964, the logo featured the same symbol but done in the team colo