For this week’s Monday Matchup, opendorse studied the off-field production of this week’s top Monday Night Football marketing stars – Odell Beckham Jr. and DeMarco Murray.
Odell Beckham Jr.
One catch can change your life. At least that’s the case for Odell Beckham Jr. of the New York Giants. Selected 12th overall in the 2014 draft, OBJ was a highly touted prospect out of LSU. Although he was a high draft pick, Beckham Jr. remained relatively unknown to the casual fan until November 23rd, 2014. On that night against the Dallas Cowboys, Beckham Jr. hauled in one of the greatest catches in football history. The LSU product fought off pass interference, fully extended his right arm, and caught a pass from Eli Manning using only three fingers. Video of the catch went viral and the Giants rookie instantly became a star. OBJ went on to break over 25 NFL records and was voted Offensive Rookie of the Year.
Beckham Jr. has taken the marketing world by storm. In just the past year, OBJ has signed over ten endorsement deals. Following the one-handed highlight, Nike sent OBJ a personalized pair of gloves with the image of his reception imprinted on them. According to Front Row Analytics, Nike received over $2 million in media exposure from OBJ’s grab within the first two days.
Following his dominant rookie campaign, Beckham Jr. became the youngest player ever to grace the cover of Madden, edging Rob Gronkowski. OBJ also tried his hand at investing this summer by purchasing a stake in the sports drink, ROAR. As an investor and endorser, he is aiming to take the ROAR brand to the next level with help from his personal drink, OBJXIII. The drink, of course, has the image of his famous catch portrayed on the can. Beckham Jr. has also shown his skills in front of the camera, taking part in TV spots for Nike, Foot Locker, and Lenovo. In September, OBJ won the title of “Heir to the Hair” after being selected to as the new face of Head and Shoulders, in place of the recently retired Troy Polamalu.
— Odell Beckham Jr (@OBJ_3) August 29, 2015
The sky is the limit for OBJ and his future endorsement earnings. The Giants receiver possesses many traits that marketers look for in an influencer: a likable personality, on-field success, and a signature moment that is easily recognized by fans everywhere. The early success and stardom in his career has placed Odell Beckham Jr. among the NFL’s most marketable athletes.
Raised in Las Vegas, Murray attended the traditional high school football power, Bishop Gorman High School. DeMarco came out of high school ranked as the second-best running back in the country, only behind current Saints running back, CJ Spiller. After receiving offers from the county’s top programs, Murray committed to Oklahoma. In his first game as a Sooner, Murray ran for five touchdowns on 87 yards. Following a productive college career, Murray was drafted in the third round by the Dallas Cowboys and started the season as their third-string running back. Murray got his chance in the sixth game of the season with starter, Felix Jones, out due to injury. Murray made the most of the opportunity, setting a Cowboys record by rushing for over 250 yards. DeMarco took over the starting spot and never looked back. In 2014, the former Sooner led the NFL in rushing and broke the Cowboys franchise record for 100+ yard rushing games in a season. During the off-season, Murray signed a five-year, $42M contract with the Philadelphia Eagles.
This offseason, Murray was traded from a large market in Dallas to another in Philadelphia. Performance pending, the move should open up even more opportunities for the five-year vet. Murray has built an endorsement portfolio that mirrors his dominant performance on the field. Murray has partnered with Unilever and will appear in advertisements for their brands, Dove, Axe, and Degree this fall. Bose, adidas, and Eastbay have also teamed with Murray to pair their products with the running back’s intense training routine. Premium watch brand, Hublot, welcomed Murray to the family last fall. Shortly after their partnership began, Murray, with the help of Hublot, invited three children who lost their home in a fire to a Hublot event and presented them with signed Cowboys gear and free Hublot watches. Murray also represents Pepsi, Ford, Verizon and Silver Leaf Resorts.
Success has not initially followed Murray to Philly, but introducing the running back to a new market may provide Murray with many new opportunities to add to his endorsement catalog.