NFL Drops Roman Numerals For Super Bowl 50

The NFL is waving farewell to tradition for one year and dropping the roman numerals for Super Bowl 50. The reason: ‘Super Bowl L’ just didn’t look right, ESPN reports.

“We started talking about Super Bowl 50 back at Super Bowl 40, when we completed the XL logo,” Jaime Weston, the NFL’s vice president of brand and creative, tells BusinessWeek. “Every logo before it only had Xs, Vs, and Is.” After mocking up 74 iterations, Weston and her team decided the L looked “unbalanced.”

The 2016 Super Bowl will go down in San Francisco and feature standard Arabic numerals for the first time since 1971. The Vince Lombardi championship trophy will shine in its usual silver splendor, with a golden “50” in the background, paying homage to its host, the Golden State.

Weston adds, “It was the best logo not only for the league but for our business partners, broadcast partners, licensees for products.”

The change is only temporary as the NFL will switch back to Roman numerals for Super Bowl 51, or Super Bowl LI, in 2017.