Nike Kicks Off Football Season with “Prepare for Combat” Campaign
September 10, 2009
BEAVERTON, Ore. (September 10, 2009) - Nike (NYSE: NKE) today introduced a comprehensive campaign featuring NFL All-Pro players Adrian Peterson, Brian Urlacher, Justin Tuck and Steven Jackson. The campaign, entitled “Prepare for Combat,” features out-of-home marketing, print, online and broadcast content of some of the game’s top players while highlighting Nike’s innovative padding system called Nike Pro Combat.
Nike Pro Combat is a lightweight, breathable padded protective base layer ergonomically designed to provide sport-specific protection to athletes without restricting flexibility. Introduced in competition at the end of the ’08-’09 college football season by a number of teams competing in Bowl games, Nike Pro Combat is currently available at retail.
Nike Pro Combat is the feature product in “Alter Ego”, a television commercial featuring Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson. The spot, directed by David Fincher, will begin airing during Thursday night’s nationally televised (NBC) NFL season opening clash matching the Tennessee Titans against the host Pittsburgh Steelers. The ad will run through several weeks on major networks and cable channels including ESPN, ABC, Fox, NBC, NFL Network, MTV and BET.
Peterson’s dynamic talents and powerful on-field persona are portrayed in “Alter Ego”, but it’s the image of last season’s NFL’s rushing leader sitting on front of his locker at game’s end that provide the title for the ad. A 3-D overlay treatment of the distinctive Nike Pro Combat deflex pattern on Peterson’s skin is symbolic of an implied transformational experience for athletes who wear the product, and creates a visually compelling closing to the ad.
“This is an exciting time in the sports calendar, the kick-off of the football season,” said Ken Dice, Nike’s Vice President, North America Marketing. “The campaign captures the energy, power and speed of football. We put a spotlight on our new Nike Pro Combat protective gear which can help athletes on all levels become a more dominating force on the field."
In advance of the television commercial, which was produced in cooperation with Portland, Ore.-based advertising agency Wieden+Kennedy, Nike launched print ads featuring Peterson, Urlacher, Tuck, and Jackson. The print ads feature each athlete individually posed wearing the Nike Pro Combat Deflex Short along with the tag line “Victory Won’t Come Find You. You Must Seize It.” Nike will also unveil several billboards featuring Peterson, Urlacher and Tuck in Los Angeles, Minneapolis, New York and Chicago.
To coincide with the launch of its “Prepare For Combat” campaign, Nike will also launch COUNTDOWN2COMBAT on www.nikefootball.com. COUNTDOWN2COMBAT is a digital feature that provides high school football players with fresh content daily such as tips and motivational videos, Nike gear spotlights, wake-up calls from Nike football athletes; as well as free music downloads. COUNTDOWN2COMBAT was produced in cooperation with R/GA.
To pump up athletes before the game, Nike partnered with Island Def Jam, Universal Motown, and Interscope Records to remix some of today’s biggest hip-hop tracks with Nike’s elite NFL players to create Game Day Remixes. Every Thursday, the songs will be available for limited download on www.nikefootball.com and for purchase on iTunes. Songs include “Always Strapped (Nike Sport Remix)” featuring Birdman, Lil Wayne and Adrian Peterson, and “Ain’t I (Nike Sport Remix)” featuring Yung LA, T.I., Yung Dro and Detroit Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson.
About Nike NIKE, Inc. based near Beaverton, Oregon, is the world's leading designer, marketer and distributor of authentic athletic footwear, apparel, equipment and accessories for a wide variety of sports and fitness activities. Wholly owned Nike subsidiaries include Cole Haan Holdings Incorporated, which designs, markets and distributes luxury shoes, handbags, accessories and coats; Converse Inc., which designs, markets and distributes athletic footwear, apparel and accessories; Hurley International LLC, which designs, markets and distributes action sports and youth lifestyle footwear, apparel and accessories; and Umbro Ltd., a leading United Kingdom-based global football (soccer) brand. For more information, visit www.nikebiz.com.