Professional football teams have not always displayed their identification on their helmets. The first team to do so was the Los Angeles Rams, who 70 years ago put an emblem on their headgear. Today’s football helmets have come a long way in the past seven decades. Let’s take a look at their form and function.
A 1948 Rams helmet was purchased at auction by SCP Auctions in January 2017 for over $ 9,500.
Mark with art
Los Angeles Rams half-back Fred Gehrke was an artist and designer during the offseason. He took it upon himself to make the Rams’ brown leather helmets a little more exciting. He used chalk to outline the shape of the spiral ram’s horn, horns painted in blue and yellow, and then presented the design to team owner Dan Reeves.
Reeves approved and offered to pay Gehrke $ 1 per helmet. Gehrke spent the summer painting, and the new helmets were well received when the Rams played their first inter-team exhibition game in 1948.
The NFL switched to plastic helmets in 1949, and the Rams continued to use the emblem but changed the colors to red and yellow.
Protection over the years
2010sThe helmets are tested by the NFL and scientists for a significant reduction in impact forces. The top ranked helmet in 2018 for safety was the VICIS Zero1. These cost around $ 950 on the company’s website.
Features of the VICIS Zero 1 helmet:
- Absorbs impact load by locally deforming, like a car bumper. It is the first football helmet to use this technology
- A system of columns absorbs shocks.
- There are three shells available, for heads of different sizes and shapes.
- A waterproof foam liner adapts to the topography of a player’s head.
Several Seattle Seahawks experimenting with the new helmet told GeekWire.com that the helmet was a bit heavier than the others, but the impacts were more comfortable.
Sources: NFL, billsportsmaps.com, Professional Football Hall of Fame, NJ.com, UniWatch, SCP Auctions, Vicis