The longstanding history of Chargers football began with Lance Alworth and John Hadl lighting up the American Football League in Powder blue jerseys and white helmets.
In the late 1970’s and early 80’s, Hall of Famers Dan Fouts and Kellen Winslow ushered in a new era in royal blue duds accented by blue helmets with a gold lightning bolt. The early 1990’s saw Junior Seau and Stan Humphries lead the Chargers to three playoff appearances in four years, including the 1994 AFC Championship while donning the white lightning bolts and a more consistent navy color scheme.
LaDainian Tomlinson and company have now brought a new attitude and legacy, and the team has made some minor changes to the logo and the uniform to give the new generation of Chargers stars their own look.
“All of those guys had their identity, their kind of uniform that made it unique for their teams,” Tomlinson said. “Well, I think it is time for us to have our identity, with our jerseys. This is our era. We’ve got great guys on this team and this is going to be the San Diego Chargers for years to come. So I think it is only right to have our own new jerseys and create our own era and our own identity.”
The navy, gold and white that Chargers fans have grown accustomed to are still present. The changes begin with a redesigned lightning bolt, which serves as the team’s primary logo. The interior of the bolt is gold and outlined with layers of first powder blue and a navy exterior. The all caps “CHARGERS” script is also receiving a makeover to a sleeker, futuristic look.
The redesigned bolt will be featured on a new metallic-white helmet. The three redesigned jerseys will follow the same color scheme as those in the past. The Chargers will continue to wear navy jerseys with white pants for most home games and white jerseys with navy pants on the road. The redesigned Powder blue jerseys with white pants will be worn on special occasions at home.
“We really love it,” said Jim Steeg, the Chargers’ chief operating officer. “The players that have seen it love it. And we think once people see the team in action, they’ll love it too.”
The main alteration to the jersey is that the new lightning bolt now stretches around the shoulder as opposed to over the top of it, a feature that Tomlinson is quite fond of.
“It kind of makes you look like you're bigger than what you are,” Tomlinson said. “I know people always say, 'Well you look small.' Now I may look a little bigger. I think that’s going to help me hopefully score more touchdowns."
The team will officially unveil their new look at a private “fashion show” next Wednesday. It’s the team’s first significant uniform alteration since 1988. In addition to LT, a handful of current players have seen the new look and are impressed.
“It’s unique,” quarterback Philip Rivers said. “I think they give a uniqueness to this team…to our personality. It has all the same great colors, but it has been tweaked to fit this team. It’s really an honor that they’ve chosen our team to be the first to wear this new uniform.”
The fashion show is scheduled at 4 p.m. Wednesday at the U.S. Grant hotel.
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