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Posted at 01:46 PM ET, 01/30/2012

Carolina Panthers unveil ‘more aggressive’ logo as Nike takes over NFL rights

By the looks of their new logo, the Carolina Panthers are hungry for more improvement in 2012. (AP - AP)
The 2011 Carolina Panthers bore little resemblance to their 2010 predecessors, who finished an NFL-worst 2-14.

With record-breaking rookie quarterback Cam Newton leading the way, the team improved to 6-10 and shed its status as the NFC’s least imposing opponent.

Now the Panthers want to look the part. On Monday, the franchise unveiled a new version of its logo, designed to instill fear in the hearts of its NFC South rivals.

The first alteration to the team’s Panther logo in 18 years features “a more aggressive, contemporary look,” according to the team.

“We have one of the finest and most recognizable logos in the NFL and wanted to make it as modern as possible without losing the dramatic essence of the mark,” Panthers President Danny Morrison said.

And here we thought Carolina’s new logo would just be Cam Newton’s face. (The old logo, seen here). (Gary I Rothstein - AP)
Note the lack of outline around the head, slightly darker shade of “panther blue” and the slightly-less unhinged jaw. (If you didn’t notice the alterations without looking at the new and old logos side by side, you’re not the only one.)

Not quite the overhaul that other pro sports teams experienced this year, but with Newton bringing new hope to the Carolinas, a new look made sense.

It’s unknown what changes this could mean for Carolina’s jerseys, but there could be numerous tweaks — both minor and major — to uniforms across the league with Nike taking over Reebok’s role as the NFL’s official uniform provider next season.

For now, Nike is starting with foot and handwear. The unveiled 32 new glove and shoe designs specific to each team during Sunday’s Pro Bowl. (Check out photos of both here.)

Which team logos and uniforms need an upgrade? And what would you like to see your team sporting on Sundays when the swoosh takeover is complete?

By  |  01:46 PM ET, 01/30/2012

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