The Jacksonville Jaguars logo was first unveiled in 1993 when a shocked Wayne Weaver held up the Jaguars’ proposed silver helmet. On the helmet was a gold leaping Jaguar that caught the attention of Ford, then-owners of the Jaguar automobile, who felt the proposed logo bore too much resemblance to the vehicle logo.
Two versions of this logo existed – a full-bodied jaguar and the half-body of a leaping jaguar. Eventually, the franchise struck an agreement with Ford, allowing the Jaguar to be the new team’s official vehicle and the Jaguars would redesign their uniforms.
The Jaguars have had two primary logos in their team’s history, with the first being the head of a snarling jaguar. It was gold and contained black spots, like your normal jaguar, but its tongue was teal – which Weaver claimed was his wife’s touch of “feeding the Panthers to our Jaguars.”
The Panthers of course, were the Jaguars’ expansion brethren, whom they would play in the 1995 Hall of Fame Game in just seventeen months later, nearly played one another in the Super Bowl, as each team made their respective conference championship game in just their second season – the two most successful teams to reach such a game until the MLB’s Arizona Diamondbacks won the World Series in just their fourth season in 2001, and of course, the Vegas Golden Knights bested this by appearing in the NHL Stanley Cup Final in 2017, their first season in the NHL.
The Jaguars updated their primary logo in 2013 and while the upgraded logo was lauded, the infamous helmets it was slapped onto the sides of became a laughingstock. This logo depicted an upgraded version of the 1995-2012 logo, featuring a more realistic and aggressive jaguar over the cartoon version that debuted in 1995.
The Jags have had a multitude of these. The first logos came in the form of the snarling jaguar swiping, leaving three teal claw marks, which lasted until 2012. An identical logo depicted the team’s wordmark above the swiping jaguar lasted until 1998. A third showed a crawling Jaguar that appeared on the team’s jersey sleeve which lasted until 2012, and the fourth was the same logo, except the wordmark rested above the Jaguar as well, lasting until 1998. A fifth secondary logo featured the team’s primary logo along with the team’s wordmark. This also lasted until 1998.
Three new logos came about in 1999. One showed the team’s primary logo in front of a black shield. A second depicted the crawling jaguar in front of a teal shield with the team’s wordmark above it. This logo lasted until 2008. The third combined elements from the first and second logos – kind of cool, in a way, but also only lasted until 2008.
One more came about in 2009 featuring the team’s primary logo along with a new wordmark. This logo lasted until 2012.
In 2013, three new secondary logos were adopted. One featured a black shield with JAGS written in gold over the new helmet logo. The second was the same thing, except a gold field flanked the shield. A third was a mirror image of the first.
The Jaguars have had three of these. The first was an Inaugural Season patch. The second came in 2004, celebrating the team’s tenth season, and the third appeared in 2019, celebrating twenty-five seasons. And if the Jags came about in your lifetime let me ask you a question – do you feel old yet?
I’m starting to, and I was four when they became a franchise.
So, what do I think about the team’s logos. Honestly, I loved that 1995-2012 one, but I like the 2013-present logo too. While I’m a Browns fan these days, when the Jaguars were founded they were my AFC team between the years 1995 and 1998, when the Browns were in their final season in Cleveland (for the foreseeable future) and suspended operations for three seasons. One reason I loved Jacksonville was because of their uniforms.
Of course, the new logo was tarnished when the team adopted their 2013 to 2017 threads, but when they adopted the 2018 look it definitely looks as if it’s in place and one can even call it an upgrade over the previous.
For me, Jacksonville’s done well.