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Shutdown Corner

NFL responds to Robert Griffin III’s unauthorized uniform modification

Shutdown Corner

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(Robert Hingle/US Presswire)

He's only been in the league for 60 official minutes, but Robert Griffin III has already seized the white-hot spotlight, meaning that everything he does comes under a whole new level of scrutiny. Like, for instance, modifying his undershirt to obscure the logo of new NFL BFF Nike, as you can see in the image above.

RGIII is, of course, an adidas man, and made the awkward Sharpie statement above to show that he's got heart, or that his heart lies with adidas, or that he can craft bizarre goalpost-HEART hieroglyphics, or something like that. Whichever, the NFL didn't take too kindly to the obscuring of the logo; the NFL and Nike are in the first year of a five-year partnership that will plaster the swoosh over everything in the NFL that's not on fire.

[Related: Increased freedom for QBs leads to record NFL point production]

Accordingly, per ESPN, the NFL will have a little chat with Mr. GIII about brand preservation. "It won't happen again," NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy told ESPN.com of the logo blackout. McCarthy said he didn't expect Griffin to be fined, since his handiwork was only on display during pregame warmups, not the game itself.

Griffin had one of the most impressive debuts in recent memory, upsetting the New Orleans Saints in a 320-yard, two-TD performance. If he throws four interceptions this week with a visible Nike logo, expect him to take a pair of scissors to the swoosh, damn the consequences.

Longtime sports fans will, of course, recognize this as fair-play turnabout on Nike, the beneficiary of the most famous logo-block of all. Back in the 1992 Olympics, Michael Jordan, a dedicated Nike employee, would only wear the Reebok-branded sweatsuit on the medal stand when he obscured the logo with a draped American flag. (At the time, Jordan said "Everyone agreed we would not deface the Reebok on the award uniform. The American flag cannot deface anything.")

There's a thought. Considering he plays in Washington, if Griffin decided to follow Jordan's lead and wrap himself in the flag for his own self-interest, he'd fit right in.

-Follow Jay Busbee on Twitter at @jaybusbee.-

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