Watch Frito-Lay's celebration of NFL kickoff with a spoof on a Christmas classic
Frito-Lay is looking to capitalize on the anticipation surrounding the return of the National Football League amid the pandemic with a campaign celebrating the excitement around kickoff eve.
As the country yearns for the return of live sports following months of lockdowns that prevented many leagues from playing, Frito-Lay is looking to embrace that excitement, says Marissa Solis, senior VP, core brands, partnerships and media, Frito-Lay. “It’s going to be a cultural moment: I don’t think we will ever have a kickoff like this again,” she says.
The snack brand is bringing together some of the NFL’s biggest stars to show how they prepare the night before kickoff. The spot, “Twas the Night Before Kickoff” spoofs the poem “Twas the Night Before Christmas” and is narrated by former running back Marshawn Lynch who is dressed in a nightgown and cap.
“As we thought about what the return of football means to America right now, it symbolizes a return to normalcy. And as we thought about our purpose to bring everyday joys, smiles and comfort, we wanted to capture the magical moment of the first game back,” Solis says, likening kickoff to the magic of the holidays.
Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski are seen in Tampa Bay Buccaneers pajamas (both players joined the team from New England Patriots this year). The spot also features Dallas Cowboys’ Ezekiel Elliott and Dak Prescott, former quarterback Tony Romo and Katie Sowers, assistant coach for the San Francisco 49ers and the first female to coach in the Super Bowl.
“We wanted to make sure it was a diverse group and there was also a female factor,” Solis says.
The 60-second spot will debut on Sept. 10 during NBC’s broadcast of the game between the Kansas City Chiefs and Houston Texans, and will run throughout the season. It was created by Frito-Lay’s internal agency and directed by Peter Berg, who also directed the football-centric drama “Friday Night Lights.”
The Pepsi-owned company is also looking to bring the in-stadium experience to fans who won’t be able to watch their favorite teams from the stands this season, with new technology-enabled Tostitos that will play teams’ chants. The limited-edition bags include chip-activated motion sensors and are available in 10 team designs—Baltimore Ravens, Dallas Cowboys, Green Bay Packers, Kansas City Chiefs, Los Angeles Rams, Minnesota Vikings, New England Patriots, New Orleans Saints, Seattle Seahawks and Tampa Bay Buccaneers—with coordinating sounds. Fans can win the bags by tweeting @Tostitos using #HomegateHeroEntry.
Given the uncertainty surrounding COVID-19, of course anything is possible as it relates to the start of the season. Even if things don’t go as planned, Solis says the company wanted to be sure it was ready for when things do come back. Solis declined to comment on Frito-Lay airing ads in the Super Bowl.