Out with old: new look unveiled for 20th season as Titans
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) The Tennessee Titans are heading into their 20th season with that nickname sporting a new look that wound up more of an update featuring some subtle changes.
And the Titans themselves love the redesign.
”This is that fierce, tough, Titan look that we all wanted,” linebacker Brian Orakpo said decked out in the all-white road uniform. ”I was kind of skeptical at first with the whole new uniform change and things like that because you got so accustomed to the old ones. But these, we’re going to love them. I know the rest of the guys are going to love them too.”
The Titans unveiled the first major redesign of their uniforms in two decades Wednesday night with quite a party of a fashion show. An estimated 20,000 fans packed shoulder to shoulder over two city blocks blocked off on Nashville’s famous honky tonk row for the event being capped with a concert by popular country pop duo Florida Georgia Line and fireworks.
”Man, it was electric,” All-Pro safety Kevin Byard said. ”I didn’t realize how many people were out there until I actually got on stage and it was stretching out so far back on Broadway man it was excellent man just to see so many fans excited to see this jersey even though the leak and things like that it’s definitely great.”
Quarterback Marcus Mariota, Byard, Orakpo, tight end Delanie Walker and Pro Bowlers in left tackle Taylor Lewan and defensive lineman Jurrell Casey showed off the variety of options on a stage across the river from Nissan Stadium.
Controlling owner Amy Adams Strunk gave some tips at the NFL owners meetings, noting all her friends in Tennessee and Texas have been trying to get her to spill what the uniforms will look like. She had promised a ”significant” change to what was first introduced in April 1999 as part of the franchise’s switch from the Tennessee Oilers and the old Houston logo and uniforms.
The Titans’ uniforms went through very minor tweaks in 2012, with Nike unveiling some new technology, but essentially the look remained the same.
The biggest switch comes with the helmet as the Titans are going from white with two navy blue stripes to navy blue with one stripe in two-toned silver for a sword. The fireball remains on the sides.
For the jersey, the Titans will wear navy at home, white on the road and light blue as the color rush option. The change comes on the shoulders with a two-toned silver mimicking the sword in the team logo along with a new light blue insert under each arm. There’s also a two-tone silver stripe on the outside of the pants.
The numbers feature a point in honor of the state’s northeast corner, with red stars from the Tennessee flag inside the back neckline.
Tennessee has been teasing the new uniforms for weeks after the franchise was routed by New England in the divisional round of the playoffs before firing coach Mike Mularkey and then hiring new coach Mike Vrabel .
Eddie George, who helped introduce the original uniforms in 1999, was on hand with Frank Wycheck, Blaine Bishop and Craig Hentrich. George said he was a bit jealous of the upgrade and noted that the Titans went to their lone Super Bowl in Atlanta the last time the team unveiled new uniforms.
”So hopefully the signs are all heading toward having a great year for the Titans and ending in Atlanta with us crossing over the 1-yard line for a win, a Super Bowl win,” George said. ”So I’m hoping it all leads to that great outcome.”
The big show and turnout should only help Nashville’s bid to host the NFL draft in either 2019 or 2020, a decision being made at the spring NFL owners’ meetings.
”I think Nashville needs to host the NFL draft,” Adams Strunk told fans.
For more NFL coverage: http://www.pro32.ap.org and http://www.twitter.com/AP-NFL.
Follow Teresa M. Walker at www.twitter.com/teresamwalker