NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE


AMERICAN FOOTBALL CONFERENCE - EAST DIVISION

BUFFALO BILLS MIAMI DOLPHINS NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS
NEW YORK JETS

COMMENTS

Please see the general comments on the NFL overview page.


HISTORICAL HELMETS

BUFFALO BILLS

1960 - 1961 1962 - 1964 1974 - 1975
1976 - c.1981 c.1982 - 1983 1984 - 1986
1994 special 1987 - 2001 1965 - 1973; 2005 -
2002 -


MIAMI DOLPHINS

1970 preseason 1966; 1969 - 1973 1966 - 1968
1973 - 1979 1980 - 1996 1997 - present

A number of relatively minor changes were made to the Dolphins' helmet logo during the late 1960s and early 1970s; I have attempted to represent only the more substantial of these changes here. Note the two main versions of the logo that were used during this period: one with the dolphin's head inside the circle, and the other with it outside. There were at least some games when both of these logos were in use at the same time by different players. The size of the logo and its colors were also inconsistent during this period, the "aqua" color varying from a bluish hue to a greenish one. The logo was modernized for the 1997 season.

Here is some additional information about the two logo variations used during the Dolphins' early years, provided by site visitor Bob G.: "The team went back and forth between the "in the sun" and "out of the sun" logos between 1966 and 1969; sometimes I believe, within a season. Starting in 1970 they seemed to have settled with the "in the sun" logo, until from the final regular season game of 1973 (vs. Detroit) thru the playoffs, about half of the team (mostly lineman) started wearing the "out of the sun" version. Pictures which show both logos on the field at the same time come from this period. Please also note that this "out of the sun" logo is much smaller than the one worn in the '60s. In 1974, the Dolphins went back exclusively to the "out of the sun" logo. (One exception was running back Norm Bulaich, who played with the team around '75-'76, wore the "in the sun" logo, which drove me crazy). Sometime around 1990, perhaps due to a change in manufacturer, the dolphin in the logo (but not the sun) became slightly larger. The "in the sun" logo was brought back for "throwback" games in 1994 against the Jets and Vikings."

And here are additional comments on this matter from site visitor "Gazzoo": "The "in the sun" logo was worn in the Dolphins initial season of 1966, but only for the first three games. They then switched to the "out of sun" version for the remainder of 1966 and all of 1967 and 1968.

"Starting in 1969, the Dolphins again went to the "in the sun" version, except for the 1970 preseason, when they went logo-less. This continued until the final regular season game of 1973 against Detroit, when about half the team (mostly linemen) started wearing the "out of sun" logo. This continued for the 1973 playoffs, including Super Bowl VIII. Any pictures you come across with both logos on the field at the same time come from this four game stretch (Lions, Bengals, Raiders, Vikings). Also note that this "out of sun" logo was much smaller than the one worn in the 1960s.

"In 1974, the Dolphins went exclusively to this smaller "out of sun" logo. Sometime around 1990, perhaps due to a change in decal manufacturer, the dolphin in the logo (but not the sun) became slightly larger. The "in the sun" logo was brought back for the 1994 throwback games; but the 2003 Thanksgiving Day throwback, supposedly based on the 1973 uniforms, actually used the early 1990's version of the logo.

*1 I have received photographs showing the Dolphins using helmets without any decals on the sides during at least the preseason games in 1970 against the Bengals and Colts.


NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS

1960 preseason 1960 1961 - 1964
1965 - 1981;
1994 special
1982 - 1989;
November 28, 2002
1990 - 1992
1993 1994 - present
*see note 1 below

This team was known as the Boston Patriots from 1960 to 1970.

*1 For the 2000 season, the Patriots switched from using royal blue in the logo to navy blue; I have not attempted to depict the change here, since it would be barely noticeable.


NEW YORK JETS including New York Titans

1960 - 1962 1963 1964
*see note 1 below
1965 - 1971 1972 - 1977 1978 - 1989
*see note 2 below
1990 - 1997 1993 (one game) 1994 special
*see note 3 below
1998 - present
*see note 4 below

*1 The Jets were originally called the New York Titans; this is the helmet the Titans used from 1960 to 1962.

*2 The placement of the logo on the helmet was changed for the 1972 season from a much more inclined position to a more horizontal orientation; the logo was no different, however, from the one used from 1965 to 1971.

*3 This special helmet was worn for one game (vs Cincinnati in week 12) to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Jets' victory in Super Bowl III.

*4 Although it is very similar to the 1964-1977 logos, the logo on the current helmet is more "rounded" on the ends, as opposed to the "football"-shape of the earlier logos.