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Originally published April 3, 2012 at 8:45 PM | Page modified April 4, 2012 at 4:20 PM

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Seahawks' uniforms overhauled as NFL gets Nike-fied

Every team in the league got new duds, but no one else got an overhaul quite like Seattle's — from the uniform's design to the two-toned helmet to the renovated logo.

Seattle Times staff reporter

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That's not a tire tread running down the middle of the Seahawks' new helmet.

Those are "feathers" — inspired by the thunderbird often featured in Pacific Northwest native designs and totems. There are 12 pairs of feathers running down each leg of the team's new uniform pants and on each side of the collar, a nod to the Seahawks' 12th Man.

That's just one part of the franchise's most significant uniform overhaul in a decade. And it was the centerpiece of Nike's introduction of the new line of NFL uniforms, which were unveiled in New York on Tuesday.

Every team in the league got new duds, but no one else got an overhaul quite like Seattle's — from the uniform's design to the two-toned helmet to the renovated logo with a gray stripe behind the bird's head.

Mock if you must. Compare them to the Nike football flagship that Oregon's college program has become, or invoke the Arena League or comic-book superheroes for that matter. But no one is going to mistake the Seahawks' new uniforms for anything out of grandma's attic.

This is some next-generation stuff for the next generation of players. Unprompted, the Packers' Jermichael Finley took to Twitter and declared Seattle's uniforms the best in the league, and that was before safety Kam Chancellor went all "Project Runway" and modeled them.

So here are the basics: Nike has replaced Reebok as the NFL's official supplier, and no, that doesn't mean the company gets carte blanche to remake the league. It supplies what the customer wants, and in this case, the customer is the NFL.

The overhaul of the Seahawks' uniform was extensive and went so far as to include a third, alternate jersey, which is gray.

Actually, it's "wolf gray" according to a Tweet from team owner Paul Allen, and as the alternate jersey, the team can use it up to twice per year.

Neon green is incorporated, too, from the piping down the side of the pants, to the shoulders and collar.

Seattle's last uniform overhaul was 2002, when the Seahawks underwent a makeover before moving into their new outdoor stadium. The team shifted to a darker shade of blue, and its logo went from having blue and green stripes behind the bird's head to having two different shades of blue. The most dramatic change was the helmets going from silver to blue.

The helmets changed this time, too, going to a truer shade of navy blue. The bigger difference is the texture, with a shiny finish on the triangle on top and a flat, matte finish on either side.

The Seahawks' logo is bigger now, too, though that wasn't necessary. These new uniforms are so different no one will mistake them for any other team.

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