By Barry Janoff
September 3, 2014: Peyton Manning and Richard Sherman were on opposite sides of the line during Super Bowl XLVIII, but the two men are now among the bevy of NFL players who have lined up on Madison Avenue to help usher in the 2014 season.
Manning, in his second season as quarterback for the Denver Broncos and first as a spokesperson for Nationwide Insurance, hits the air with his initial TV spot for the firm during NBC's Thursday Night Football on Sept. 4.
Sherman, who stars at cornerback for the defending Super Bowl champion Seattle Seahawks, brings along his mom, Beverly, as the faces of the new "Mama’s Boy" effort from Campbell's Soup, anchored by a TV spot that supports five new flavors from the brand. Sherman's spot, which broke online, hits TV this weekend.
Among the other players who will star in new NFL creative are Aaron Rodgers (State Farm), Johnny Manziel (Snickers), Russell Wilson (Duracell, Braun, Alaska Airlines), Eli Manning (alongside brother Peyton for DirecTV), Cam Newton (Gatorade, Under Armour, Drakkar), Marshawn Lynch (Skittles), Terrance Knighton (Bridgestone), Nick Foles (Courtyards By Marriott), Patrick Willis (Duracell); Drew Brees, J.J. Watt and Larry Fitzgerald (NFL Mobile from Verizon); Sherman, Colin Kaepernick, LeShean McCoy, Dez Bryant, Eddie Lacy and Von Miller (EA Sports Madden NFL 15); Victor Cruz and Jimmy Graham (ESPN This is SportsCenter); Fitzpartick, Caepernick, Brees and Andrew Luck (Visa); and Brees, Lynch, McCoy, Graham and Demaryius Thomas (Microsoft Xbox).
In its first season as an official NFL partner, Nationwide said it would be "leveraging one of its most powerful branding assets," its advertising theme, "Nationwide is on your side" and newly signed spokesman Manning to get its message to consumers and football fans.
The initial spot, "Jingle," which is part of a larger campaign to run throughout the season, shows Manning as he incorporates the song into various aspects of his daily routine, including driving, making lunch, during practice and in the locker room.
The campaign also supports the insurer's new logo, which was unveiled this week. Lead agency is Ogilvy & Mather, New York.
“Everywhere we go, people sing the ‘Nationwide is on your side’ jingle," Matt Jauchius, CMO for Nationwide, said in a statement. "As we developed this ad, we wanted to convey the familiarity of the jingle in a manner that attracts attention in a light-hearted way."
Manning, who takes in about $18 million a year from endorsements, tops among NFL players, also stars in new campaigns from Gatorade and Papa John's.
Campbell’s Chunky soup, the official soup sponsor of the NFL, brings in Sherman and, for the first time since 2007, a real mom to star alongside her “Mama’s Boy.” In the campaign, Beverly Sherman is the leader of a group of a Seattle Legion of Superfans "who do everything in their power to make sure their favorite gridiron hero gets his Chunky soup." (See the TV spot here.)
“Richard Sherman is one of the elite players in the NFL, he has a wonderful relationship with his mother and his fan base is extremely energetic,” Neeli Straiges, senior brand manager for Campbell’s Chunky soup, said in a statement. “We are excited for Richard and Beverly to be the next faces of this iconic campaign and to be part of the Mama’s Boy history.”
New flavors include Pub-Style Chicken Pot Pie, Sausage & Pepper Rigatoni, Beer-n-Cheese with Beef & Bacon, Jazzy Jambalaya and Mushroom Swiss Burger.
The Campbell's Chunky effort, from lead agency Y&R New York, was "inspired by a superhero thematic" and will include an animated spot featuring cartoon versions of the cast as imagined by renowned illustrator J.J. Sedelmaier."
All of which is, for some, simply a preview for Super Bowl XLIX, to air on Feb. 1, 2015, for which NBC is already getting some $4 million for 30-second spots.
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