The most recognizable apparel company in American sports made its partnership with the most popular professional league in American sports official on Tuesday.
Roger Goodell, various NFL players and an assortment of Nike bigwigs all made the trek out to Brooklyn today for the rolling out Nike’s Elite 51 NFL uniforms – brand new garb for all 32 teams that looks good and may even improve performance. This of course is all a part of the NFL’s much-hyped five-year deal with Nike, one which will inevitably end with the infamous swoosh logo stamped onto just about everything associated with football.
What exactly do these new uniforms bring to the table? Well, according to Sports Illustrated:
The NFL's Elite 51 uniform builds upon new uniform technology in place within the collegiate ranks, giving athletes a base layer uniform that is 22 percent cooler, eight percent lighter and five percent drier than the NFL's previous threads as well as a top layer that also offers lighter weight, all with stronger materials and more flexibility -- two aspects the players fawned over on Tuesday.
Beyond the football field, this is just Nike’s latest foray into previously (somewhat) uncharted waters. Prior to this, the company had relationships with individual teams – but this sort of exclusive right to be the supplier to every team is new for the apparel behemoth.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Nike paid $1.1 billion for the right to be the NFL’s exclusive provider over the next five years. And while that’s obviously a hefty total, it already appears to be paying off. The same article noted that Adidas (Reebok had the rights previously) losing the licensing to Nike “will result in an estimated revenue loss for Reebok of $200 million to $250 million a year and contribute to the unit's sales decline this year.”
Seeing as the NFL has never been more popular, it seems like both the league and its new partners are in for a very profitable next few years.
You can check out photos of the new uniforms here.
(Note: Tune in on Tuesday to the Bottom Line Sports Show as they talk all things NFL, and have one lucky NFL Draft prospect on to discuss what the future holds.)