In this article we discuss how to choose which type of NFL jersey to buy. Let’s say, for example, you know you want a Patrick Mahomes jersey. Well, there is a Mahomes Nike Legend jersey, a Mahomes Nike Limited jersey, a Mahomes Nike Elite jersey, and on and on. Point is, there are a lot of options to choose from when trying to decide on the best NFL jersey to buy.
- Article Summary in 20 words – this is my favorite NFL jersey type. To me it is the best value and also has an awesome fit (affiliate link takes you to NFLShop.com).
There are actually 5 different types of NFL jerseys to choose from (4 made by Nike, 1 made by NFL Pro Line). The amount of options can confuse some people and complicate the process.
The purpose of this guide is to explain what your five jersey choices are, and how they vary in fit, cost, and design. Please understand that we could type 10,000 words about these differences, but we don’t want to over-complicate the process, so we won’t.
Instead, we will give you the basic facts of each jersey and then link to our more in-depth resources for each jersey, in case you wish to read more.
To choose the best NFL jersey to buy, you need to follow a three step process that helps you decide what jersey best fits your needs. Those three steps are:
- Step 1: Understanding the Price Ranges
- Step 2: Understanding the Design Differences
- Step 3: Understanding the Fit Differences
The 5 jersey types vary on price and fit, but also on design. For example, some of the jersey types have stitched graphics, while others have screen-printed graphics. The design differences obviously will impact the cost of the jersey.
Let’s go through this process step by step so you can decide what is the best NFL jersey to buy. Before we start, posted below is a simple graphic to give you a general idea how these jersey types differ.
**Please note that pricing is subject to change, and varies depending where you buy your jersey. This graphic is just to give you a general idea of how these jerseys differed based on our personal experiences trying the jerseys. The fit description is based on our opinion from trying each jersey. We will link to specific pricing later.
Choosing the Best NFL Jersey to Buy
Step 1: Understanding the Price Ranges
There is a range of price points for NFL jerseys, which helps you as a fan find one that works best for your budget. Obviously, in general, the better the design, the more the jersey will cost.
As we discussed earlier, Nike makes 4 different types of NFL jerseys, and NFL Pro Line also makes a jersey. So you have 5 total jersey types to choose from.
The Nike Elite jerseys are the authentic jerseys, and the closest you can get as a fan to wearing what the players wear on the field. The next step down from Elite jerseys, are the Nike Limited jerseys.
The Nike Limited jerseys are not true authentic jerseys, but they do have some premium design features (like stitched graphics). The Nike Limited Vapor Untouchable jerseys are my favorite type of NFL jersey.
The NFL Pro Line jerseys, the Nike Legend jerseys, and the Nike Game jerseys will be the more affordable tier of NFL jerseys. We will discuss design in the next section, but in general, expect the most affordable tier to have screen-printed graphics.
Below we linked to NFLShop.com so that you can check the current price of these jerseys (affiliate links take you to NFLShop.com). NFLShop.com is the official online shop for the NFL, and allows you to buy with confidence knowing you are not getting scammed.
- Pro Line – Click here to check current price at NFLShop.com
- Nike Legend – Click here to check current price at NFLShop.com
- Nike Game – Click here to check current price at NFLShop.com
- Nike Limited – Click here to check current price at NFLShop.com
- Nike Elite – Click here to check current price at NFLShop.com
Step 2: Understanding the Design Differences
As we said at the top, we could write 10,000 words on the differences in these jerseys, but we don’t want to over-complicate this guide. Below are general design descriptions for these jerseys.
The Pro Line/Nike Legend/Nike Game jerseys, although each will be unique in its own way, are a more basic tier of replica jersey. These jerseys won’t have the premium features, but will be more affordable.
The Nike Limited jerseys are a step up and feature some premium design features. And the Nike Elite jerseys are the true authentic jerseys, and the closest you can get as a fan to wearing what the players wear on the field.
- Pro Line – This jersey is a replica jersey not made by Nike. It has screen-printed graphics and is a nice, affordable option for those on a budget. Even though it has printed graphics, I personally was quite pleased with the overall design and look of the Pro Line jerseys. To read more, visit our Pro Line Jersey Review. Photos:
- Nike Legend – The Nike Legend jerseys are a unique take on a fan jersey. It fits more like a t-shirt, but it is polyester, so it feels like a jersey. I was actually a bit shocked how much I liked the Nike Legend jerseys. We discuss fit in the next section, but I really like the way these fit. Screen-printed graphics. To read more visit our Nike Legend Review. Photos:
- Nike Game – The Nike Game jerseys are a very popular option. Although they have screen-printed graphics, they fit more like a true jersey than the Nike Legends we covered above. If you are looking for a standard replica jersey, this is probably your best option. To read more, visit our Nike Game Review. Photos:
- Nike Limited – The Nike Limited Jerseys are a step up from the basic tier of replica jerseys. These jerseys have some premium features, like stitched graphics. The Nike Limited Vapor jerseys are my choice for best NFL jersey to buy. To read more, visit our Nike Limited Jersey Review. Photos:
- Nike Elite – The Nike Elite jersey are the top tier of jerseys. These are the authentic NFL jerseys. This is the closest you can get to wearing what the players wear. Expect all the premium design features, including authentic paneling and stitched graphics. The actual design of the Elite jerseys can vary (regular and Vapor). Photos below of both. To read more, visit our Nike Elite Jersey Review. To read more about the two types, visit our article Elite vs Vapor.
Step 3: Understanding the Fit Differences
In step 1 and step 2, you decide what price range and design features make the most sense for you. But before you order your jersey, you still need to know what to expect as far as sizing.
NFL jerseys DO NOT have a consistent fit across all jersey types. For example, here is a size medium Nike Legend jersey sitting on top of a size medium Pro Line jersey:
As you can see, there is a significant difference in those two jerseys, despite both being size mediums. In the sections below we will discuss briefly how you can expect each jersey type to fit, and link out to other resources for further reading.
- Pro Line – The Pro Line jerseys are the baggiest jerseys available. If you prefer a tighter fit, you will need to size this jersey down. Here is a look at a size medium (6’3″ 200 pounds):
- Nike Legend – The Nike Legend jersey fits true to size. It fits much like a regular t-shirt. My recommendation is to order your normal sizing for the Nike Legend. Here is a look at a size medium (6’3″ 200 pounds):
- Nike Game – The Nike Game jerseys have what I like to call a relaxed fit that runs true to size. Yes, this is another way to say these jerseys run a little bit big, but I personally did not size down. Expect a relaxed fit. Read more here: Nike Game Jersey Sizing. Here is a look at a size medium (6’3″ 200 pounds):
- Nike Limited – As I said earlier, the Nike Limited jerseys are my choice for best NFL jersey to buy. I really like the way this jersey fits. It has a standard true-to-size fit that isn’t too tight or too loose. I recommend normal sizing. Read more here: Nike Limited Jersey Sizing. Here is a look at a size medium (6’3″ 200 pounds):
- Nike Elite – Remember, these are the authentic jerseys. They have an athletic, slim fit which mimics the jerseys the players wear. The Elite jerseys use numerical sizing. Also, as we discussed earlier, there are two types of Elite jerseys (regular and Vapor). Read more here: Nike Elite Jersey Sizing. Here is a look at a size 40 for both types of Nike Elite jerseys (6’3″ 200 pounds):
Where to Buy NFL Jerseys
The affiliate links posted below take you to NFLShop.com, which is the official online shop of the NFL. You can buy from them with confidence knowing you aren’t getting scammed:
- Pro Line – Click here to buy the Pro Line Jersey at NFLShop.com
- Nike Legend – Click here to buy the Nike Legend jersey at NFLShop.com
- Nike Game – Click here to buy the Nike Game Jersey at NFLShop.com
- Nike Limited – Click here to buy the Nike Limited Jersey at NFLShop.com
- Nike Elite – Click here to buy the Nike Elite Jersey at NFLShop.com