Matt Stevens is a super talented designer and illustrator that I know about from his AirMax1-a-day project. I loved this concept so much that I ended up funding his Kickstarter project which got me one of his printed books.
Over this past weekend, he gave himself another fun project by retro rebranding the Carolina Panthers. This isn't new for Matt. He actually did something like this before with Dunkin Donuts.
The mock up of the retro helmet is a great execution, but honestly that combination of a black helmet with a grey face mask and bold white 'C' is badass.
I'm going to go ahead and say that's the best football shaped branding I have ever seen. It's clear, clever and subtle. There are no gradients, metallics or bright colors, just great simple design.
NFL should really take note with these retro designs. Especially if they do plan on expanding the league to be more teams. Nike has done a great job with uniforms, but the league branding of teams as a whole is over designed.