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Nike Backlash Among NFL Players


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The biggest problem with Griffin is that he's gone out of his way to show he's with adidas. Adidas should understand what thde contract reads like as well and should understand that he's obligated to wear Nike warmups. Realistically, the easy fix is to have Nike deliver tshirts without the swoosh or adidas can tell their clients what they are required to wear due to the league contracts.

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The biggest problem with Griffin is that he's gone out of his way to show he's with adidas. Adidas should understand what thde contract reads like as well and should understand that he's obligated to wear Nike warmups. Realistically, the easy fix is to have Nike deliver tshirts without the swoosh or adidas can tell their clients what they are required to wear due to the league contracts.

Is he though? Was that the deal?

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Support the league first, then your self second. It is like the family dynamic, you work to provide for your family and place your self on the back burner as long as they are taken care of.

Really? We're talking the league who embarrassed itself with the replacement refs and you're talking about supporting the league? The league can't even take care of itself! Screw their mandate. They can't even protect the players and the game and they (you) want to protect the league and a Nike logo? Completely hypocritical if you ask me.

It is like a war, you support your soldiers no matter what, even if you do not support the campaign. Another example is to look at the people who are providing you a job. Sometimes you may get frustrated, but at the end of the day you support you company. As far as the replacement refs, sure the NFL messed up by not working out a deal sooner, but a political party could say they were going to work on the budget and just because you don't see changes, does that mean you are not going to follow your party anymore? Things happen behind the scenes in companies, politics and the NFL that we don't see, but generally we still support them. I am a loyalist and I believe that loyalty to your company is the number one priority because at the end of the day it is all about who is providing me with well-being in terms of a job, income and overall happiness.

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As far as the replacement refs, sure the NFL messed up by not working out a deal sooner, but a political party could say they were going to work on the budget and just because you don't see changes, does that mean you are not going to follow your party anymore?

Well, if a political party is making all sorts of promises they won't keep and failing to appeal to your personal principles, why on Earth would you continue to follow that party?

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The biggest problem with Griffin is that he's gone out of his way to show he's with adidas. Adidas should understand what thde contract reads like as well and should understand that he's obligated to wear Nike warmups. Realistically, the easy fix is to have Nike deliver tshirts without the swoosh or adidas can tell their clients what they are required to wear due to the league contracts.

Is he though? Was that the deal?

NFL Rulebook, Section 4:

All visible items worn on game day by players must be issued by the club or the League, or, if from outside sources, must have approval in advance by the League office.

I presume to mean that is Nike, New Era, and apparel with no logos.

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The biggest problem with Griffin is that he's gone out of his way to show he's with adidas. Adidas should understand what thde contract reads like as well and should understand that he's obligated to wear Nike warmups. Realistically, the easy fix is to have Nike deliver tshirts without the swoosh or adidas can tell their clients what they are required to wear due to the league contracts.

Is he though? Was that the deal?

NFL Rulebook, Section 4:

All visible items worn on game day by players must be issued by the club or the League, or, if from outside sources, must have approval in advance by the League office.

I presume to mean that is Nike, New Era, and apparel with no logos.

Yes but it's still vague wording. It doesn't explicitly state that it can't be modified, nor does it say what is considered "visible". For example - there's various pre-game warmups, some of which are captured on TV, others of which nobody really sees since there's no crowd and the TV cameras aren't set up yet. Technically it's "game day", but is it visible"? One could argue that it only means game uniforms and sideline apparel. Of course you could also argue that it includes post-game press conferences and such since that's also technically "game day", but it's still too vague of a wording to be sure. I'm sure the actual contract is more specific.

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The biggest problem with Griffin is that he's gone out of his way to show he's with adidas. Adidas should understand what thde contract reads like as well and should understand that he's obligated to wear Nike warmups. Realistically, the easy fix is to have Nike deliver tshirts without the swoosh or adidas can tell their clients what they are required to wear due to the league contracts.

Is he though? Was that the deal?

NFL Rulebook, Section 4:

All visible items worn on game day by players must be issued by the club or the League, or, if from outside sources, must have approval in advance by the League office.

I presume to mean that is Nike, New Era, and apparel with no logos.

Yes but it's still vague wording. It doesn't explicitly state that it can't be modified, nor does it say what is considered "visible". For example - there's various pre-game warmups, some of which are captured on TV, others of which nobody really sees since there's no crowd and the TV cameras aren't set up yet. Technically it's "game day", but is it visible"? One could argue that it only means game uniforms and sideline apparel. Of course you could also argue that it includes post-game press conferences and such since that's also technically "game day", but it's still too vague of a wording to be sure. I'm sure the actual contract is more specific.

The Rule Book provides a bit more detail, though "previously approved by League" appears in nearly every paragraph. I was remiss in not providing the link earlier: http://static.nfl.com/static/content/public/image/rulebook/pdfs/2012%20-%20Rule%20Book.pdf

Game day seems to be from the minute the gates are open until after the post-game press conferences (90 minutes, I believe).

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The only thing I have to add is, it was insanely idiotic for Adidas to throw lots of money at RGIII and then cheap out and not pay the NFL to have him feature their shoes on the field. Especially with the advent of team-color shoes, Adidas would have been able to come up with a particularly garish set of red and yellow cleats that would have made people notice.

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figure this one out...all adidas t-shirts with LeBron can not have the adidas mark on them. Why does he get a special exemption?

Probably a deal with LeBron/Nike. LeBron says that they can't use his likeness under certain conditions and this must be one of them

Athletes in other sports have opted out of their players' union's licensing agreement, requiring companies to work out deals with them personally. Players such as Barry Bonds and Lavar Arrington didn't appear in video games because EA didn't want to pay them extra to use their likenesses. Maybe LeBron opted out and worked out a deal with Adidas.

Then again, I am looking online right now and see several images of James jerseys and t-shirts with the Adidas logo on them. Can anyone confirm this?

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Here's the relevant passage. Rule 5, Section 4, Article 6:

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LOGOS AND COMMERCIAL IDENTIFICATION

_Article 6 Throughout the period on game-day that a player is visible to the stadium and television audience (including in pregame warm-ups, in the bench area, and during postgame interviews in the locker room or on the field), players are prohibited from wearing, displaying, or orally promoting equipment, apparel, or other items that carry commercial names or logos/identifications of companies, unless such commercial identification has been approved in advance by the League office. The size of any approved logo or other commercial identification involved in an agreement between a manufacturer and the League will be modest and unobtrusive, and there is no assurance that it will be visible to the television audience.

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_Seems pretty clear to me.

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_That's adidas' Swoosh. Like it or not, you can't really blame them for using it. For people who aren't super familiar with sportswear, that's how you distinguish an adidas piece from someone else's.

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_But adidas not only uses the three stripes as a logo, but as the primary design element, especially on the NBA warmups, where its the only design. Saying three stripes is adidas swoosh isn't a fair comparison

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_This. This is why I used the word "motif," and not logo. Wake me when Nike makes a uniform where the dominant design element is a giant swoosh running down each sleeve and each pant leg. Clearly, the NBA prevented adidas from touching their primary kits; if left to their devices, adidas would revamp the on-court unis to match the All-Star unis - with an unsubtle three stripe pattern shoe-horned in wherever possible.

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_For the life of me, I don't know why soccer teams stand for it - many of their identities are tied to a color scheme and a crest, with the rest looking like a big ad for the kit manufacturer's template du jour and that year's corporate sponsor. And worse, when they're wearing their clash kit, they even cede their identifying color scheme (e.g., Chelsea in black is identifiable by their crest - and precious little else). Obviously, there's a cultural difference here, and soccer teams are fine with it. But I'll never understand why a club (or national team) would want to relinquish so much of their brand identity and individuality. A few teams here and there have an iconic striping or checker patten, but that's about it.

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_figure this one out...all adidas t-shirts with LeBron can not have the adidas mark on them. Why does he get a special exemption?

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_Probably a deal with LeBron/Nike. LeBron says that they can't use his likeness under certain conditions and this must be one of them

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_Athletes in other sports have opted out of their players' union's licensing agreement, requiring companies to work out deals with them personally. Players such as Barry Bonds and Lavar Arrington didn't appear in video games because EA didn't want to pay them extra to use their likenesses. Maybe LeBron opted out and worked out a deal with Adidas.

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_Then again, I am looking online right now and see several images of James jerseys and t-shirts with the Adidas logo on them. Can anyone confirm this?

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_I think most of what you are finding are name and number t-shirts which are replica's of the jerseys which is allowed and a few originals tees with the trefoil, but just straight graphic tees do not get the performance adidas mark.

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_For the life of me, I don't know why soccer teams stand for it - many of their identities are tied to a color scheme and a crest, with the rest looking like a big ad for the kit manufacturer's template du jour and that year's corporate sponsor. And worse, when they're wearing their clash kit, they even cede their identifying color scheme (e.g., Chelsea in black is identifiable by their crest - and precious little else). Obviously, there's a cultural difference here, and soccer teams are fine with it. But I'll never understand why a club (or national team) would want to relinquish so much of their brand identity and individuality. A few teams here and there have an iconic striping or checker patten, but that's about it.

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_This has been going on for decades but the clubs still have their home ‘primary’ kit. Holland wear Orange, Liverpool wear all Red, Real Madrid all White. The change shirts serve only to contrast with this so it would make no sense for it to not to vary in colour to a degree. If Chelsea didn’t have their black kit and only their home of blue and away of white, what would they wear at QPR who wear blue and white hoops? They're are identifiable because they're Chelsea.

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_Supporter's just have a different mentality when it comes to their sides uniforms. Clubs are not bound by league wide supplier contracts so different manufacturers come and go for each club and bring different templates, materials, shades etc. Therefore there’s going to be variations from season to season, big or small when manufactures change. Most fans like this, the prospect of your clubs new kit being unveiled causes much discussion. If you don't like this years kits, you know you won't be stuck with it for eternity. It's much different to American sports fans who complain about the stripes being altered slightly because of a new template.

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_For the life of me, I don't know why soccer teams stand for it - many of their identities are tied to a color scheme and a crest, with the rest looking like a big ad for the kit manufacturer's template du jour and that year's corporate sponsor. And worse, when they're wearing their clash kit, they even cede their identifying color scheme (e.g., Chelsea in black is identifiable by their crest - and precious little else). Obviously, there's a cultural difference here, and soccer teams are fine with it. But I'll never understand why a club (or national team) would want to relinquish so much of their brand identity and individuality. A few teams here and there have an iconic striping or checker patten, but that's about it.

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_This has been going on for decades but the clubs still have their home ?primary? kit. Holland wear Orange, Liverpool wear all Red, Real Madrid all White. The change shirts serve only to contrast with this so it would make no sense for it to not to vary in colour to a degree. If Chelsea didn?t have their black kit and only their home of blue and away of white, what would they wear at QPR who wear blue and white hoops? They're are identifiable because they're Chelsea.

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_Supporter's just have a different mentality when it comes to their sides uniforms. Clubs are not bound by league wide supplier contracts so different manufacturers come and go for each club and bring different templates, materials, shades etc. Therefore there?s going to be variations from season to season, big or small when manufactures change. Most fans like this, the prospect of your clubs new kit being unveiled causes much discussion. If you don't like this years kits, you know you won't be stuck with it for eternity. It's much different to American sports fans who complain about the stripes being altered slightly because of a new template.

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_(btw: that was me you quoted above, not andrew)

_I agree, of course, with everything you've said. But it doesn't change the fact that clubs have chosen to water down their identity by chasing the merchandising dollars of turning over new kits every season.

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_Plenty of teams in "North American-centric sports" (baseball, football, basketball) have stuck with a specific color scheme for decades. The Raiders own Silver and Black as much as Chelsea owns Blue. But, the North American teams get to further distinguish their identity by their choice of number font, the striping and piping, etc. The reason why American fans complain about stripes being changed is because their team has been successful in building a brand around those stripes. Even Oregon - with their wild experiments with color, template, etc., use distinctive design elements in their kits are uniquely *Oregon* (as opposed to uniquely Nike) - a unique font, or a use of "carbon fiber" texture, or individualized wing graphic, etc. Folks complain that Maryland football's kit is a big advertisement for Under Armour, but they too have plenty of distinctive design elements are uniquely *Maryland* - the "Maryflage" pattern, the incorporation of the state flag and heraldry, the terrapin shell pattern, etc.

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_Supporters of soccer/football clubs can only identify with a crest and a color. Every other identifier/branding opportunity: uni template, font choice, striping and piping, sublimated designs, etc., is usurped by the kit manufacturer to promote their own template. The kit manufacturers freely recycle those designs for other teams - further muddying each team's identity - and they sell blank versions of the kits for average joes to wear. I can't buy a "blank" Oregon jersey with no name/logo/# but with all of the trimmings, but I'm pretty sure I can buy a blank blue soccer kit that is essentially the Chelsea kit minus a crest and another corporation's logo - and that's a problem.

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_For the life of me, I don't know why soccer teams stand for it - many of their identities are tied to a color scheme and a crest, with the rest looking like a big ad for the kit manufacturer's template du jour and that year's corporate sponsor. And worse, when they're wearing their clash kit, they even cede their identifying color scheme (e.g., Chelsea in black is identifiable by their crest - and precious little else). Obviously, there's a cultural difference here, and soccer teams are fine with it. But I'll never understand why a club (or national team) would want to relinquish so much of their brand identity and individuality. A few teams here and there have an iconic striping or checker patten, but that's about it.

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_This has been going on for decades but the clubs still have their home ‘primary’ kit. Holland wear Orange, Liverpool wear all Red, Real Madrid all White. The change shirts serve only to contrast with this so it would make no sense for it to not to vary in colour to a degree. If Chelsea didn’t have their black kit and only their home of blue and away of white, what would they wear at QPR who wear blue and white hoops? They're are identifiable because they're Chelsea.

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_Supporter's just have a different mentality when it comes to their sides uniforms. Clubs are not bound by league wide supplier contracts so different manufacturers come and go for each club and bring different templates, materials, shades etc. Therefore there’s going to be variations from season to season, big or small when manufactures change. Most fans like this, the prospect of your clubs new kit being unveiled causes much discussion. If you don't like this years kits, you know you won't be stuck with it for eternity. It's much different to American sports fans who complain about the stripes being altered slightly because of a new template.

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_That's not a quote from me, by the way, so I'd appreciate if that could be edited. I see what you guys are saying. Obviously the marks are used in different ways, but as far as value goes, the three stripes is to adidas what the swoosh is to Nike. I didn't mean to compare them from an application standpoint.

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_That's not a quote from me, by the way, so I'd appreciate if that could be edited. I see what you guys are saying. Obviously the marks are used in different ways, but as far as value goes, the three stripes is to adidas what the swoosh is to Nike. I didn't mean to compare them from an application standpoint.

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_Apologies, I have edited that.

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_Again it's just one of the many differences between the sporting cultures. Soccer fans tend to identify the club less around the actual shirt design and more of the idea of the 'shirt' and what the club represents which is rather fluid and organic, there is not much talk of ?identities? per se. At European football grounds you won't see many people in replica shirts for many reasons, one being the corporatized nature of kits. In America the 'brand' of the team is important and when you have a 'brand? you do need consistency. It?s the norm for people to don their Raiders jerseys; the one?s bought in the 80?s look pretty much the same as those bought today, which might not be a bad thing.

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_On topic, I can?t see much harm in other manufactures offering an all one colour option for shoes and the league and Nike passing it. Everyone knows that Griffin has an agreement with adidas, making him put tape around the 3 stripes just brings more attention to this.

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_Again it's just one of the many differences between the sporting cultures. Soccer fans tend to identify the club less around the actual shirt design and more of the idea of the 'shirt' and what the club represents which is rather fluid and organic, there is not much talk of ?identities? per se. At European football grounds you won't see many people in replica shirts for many reasons, one being the corporatized nature of kits. In America the 'brand' of the team is important and when you have a 'brand? you do need consistency. It?s the norm for people to don their Raiders jerseys; the one?s bought in the 80?s look pretty much the same as those bought today, which might not be a bad thing.

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_Interesting. So if, say, Man U worked with their kit manufacturer (Nike?) to design a new kit with Man U-specific design elements (e.g., a customized font, unique striping, etc), and signed a long-term endorsement contract with Audi - would their supporters complain if they didn't roll out a new kit for another decade? Or, would they become attached to Man U's unique look and allow Man U to build equity in that specific, (semi) permanent identity? In other words: are supporters responding to the way their teams are marketing to them, or are is there something unique about soccer culture that prevents teams from establishing identities beyond the colors and the crests?

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