What’s in a name? For this article, the question is what’s in a logo?
The New York Football Giants have used several logos since they entered the National Football League in 1925. The club got its nickname from the National League baseball Giants, so it was only logical that some form of "NY" configuration would be forthcoming.
1945 - 1955
The first known actual logo occurred in 1945. Pictured is a 1945 Topps football card of Giants great Em Tunnell. The logo on the card is the one first featured for the franchise. It contains a circle with a "Giant Quarterback" football player amongst a cityscape underneath. It is also the only team logo that features the identifying word "Football" to differentiate the team from the baseball Giants which did not relocate from New York City until 1958. This logo was developed by Marie Steinmuller.
Now, there is a logo that a lot of folks think was the first logo used when the franchise entered the NFL in 1925. However, this logo is actually a modern logo to appear old and was invented by the apparel industry:
1956 - 1960
The next logo change happened in 1956 and was used through the 1960 season. This logo utilized the same concept as the original with a "Giant Quarterback", but instead of the skyscrapers underneath this time it is Yankee Stadium; which was the new home for the club. The Giants had left the drafty and antiquated confines of the Polo Grounds for the more modern and popular home of the American League Yankees for the 1956 season and wanted an updated look.
1961 - 1974
Another logo change took place in 1961 and is what most Giants fans remember about the horrible squads that roamed the gridiron in the 1970s. This would become the very first logo that would appear on the sides of the player’s helmets, but white in color. This logo was also developed by Marie Steinmuller.
In an odd twist, the franchise wanted to break from the funk that was the late 1960s through the drought-filled 1970s with what they considered to be a hipster design. The last time the team made a playoff appearance was 1964. The club had turned in two win seasons for the second straight year and something new, innovative and groovy was in order. Fans hated it, players hated it, and the worst play in Giants history occurred while wearing this logo. For 1975, the club was kicked out of Yankee Stadium and their new digs was still under construction in New Jersey. They played their home games at Shea Stadium and showed a lot of promise as the team began 5-2-0. But in game eight, all the Giants had to do was to run out the clock but instead fumbled to which the Eagles ran it back for a game-winning touchdown. The team would end the season 5-9-0 and the logo, nicknamed the "disco helmet", was deemed bad luck.
1976 - 1999
Another change would be made in 1976. The Giants, who now had left New York City for New Jersey, felt that their franchise was more of a regional club and wanted a logo to represent this. So, the "NY" logo in any form was vanquished for a more generic type. With the helmet color still blue, this logo was solid white.
2000 – Present
The NFL wanted to display vintage uniforms and began the practice of wearing them in live games beginning in Week 3 of the 1991 season. Part of the reason was for historical significance, but the other motive was additional revenue with jersey sales. When the Giants wore their throwback unies with the infamous "NY" logo, fans loved it. There were games where the team wore red jerseys, gray pants, and 1960s blue jerseys. What transpired next was the team wore the throwbacks (at the time considered their third jersey) for more games than originally considered. In 2000, the 1961 throwbacks were once again the standard-issue uniform and helmet logo.
2000 – 2009
An alternate logo was invented once the club moved into the new Giants Stadium, which opened in 1976. In order to respect the past, the same "Giant Quarterback" was modernized rising above the stadium. The subtle difference in this logo versus the prior two is that the other quarterbacks depicted a stiff arm plus a helmet without a facemask.
There have been a multitude of logos compiled by various graphic artists over the years. Below are some of the best.