Nike unveiled its new line of NFL gear on April 3. On April 27, the Nike NFL jerseys became available for purchase.
According to Allen Brettman of the Oregonian, sales were 100 percent higher than last year during the first week of availability. For the second week, sales were 150 percent higher than last year.
The key words are “last year.” Last year, the NFL had locked out the players. So even if the apparel contract hadn’t switch from Reebok to Nike in 2012, an increase surely would have been realized during the same time period.
None of this means that the Nike jerseys won’t eventually be more popular than their Reebok counterparts. But it’s a bit misleading to suggest that flipping the switch from Reebok to Nike automatically has increased demand based on the reality that, last year at this time, demand undoubtedly was lower than it otherwise would have been.
In the end, though, fans buy jerseys not because of who makes them, but because of their colors and logos and numbers and names.