NFL Hero Travis Kelce Gets 'Overly Direct' for DirecTV

Sports-themed sequel to ads with Brian Cox

"What do you call a guy in face paint who can't get the game? A clown."

Travis Kelce gets delightfully disdainful in funny work breaking today from DirecTV.

The Kansas City Chiefs tight end takes over for thespian Brian Cox, who appeared as the brand's "Overly Direct Spokesperson" a few months ago. Now, Travis plays an "Overly Direct Sportsperson." His teammate, defensive tackle Chris Jones, crashes the party—and we do mean CRASHES!—in the :55 below.

DirecTV | Overly Direct Sportsperson

Cox seemed grouchy and aggressive. Kelce, ever dismissive of those who don't watch NFL games his way (on DirectTV), engages in some wanton destruction. Both performances address media fragmentation, portraying the satellite and streaming service as the ultimate stress-free aggregator of premium content.

Jake Syzmanski (Jury Duty) directed the spots in brisk, sitcom style, and TikTok creator Reece Feldman (aka @GuywithaMovieCamera) will contribute to the initiative.

"Our previous campaign featuring Brian Cox was all about showing people how they're compromising on their TV," Mark Winters, creative director at TBWA\Chiat\Day, which developed the initiative, tells Muse. "The challenge was, how do we adapt the work into a campaign that does the same thing—but for all the ways people compromise on football? We decided we would take our 'Overly Direct Spokesperson' and turn him into an 'Overly Direct Sportsperson.' Now we just had to figure out who that should be."

Casting Kelce made sense "because he knows a thing or two about sports leadership," Winters says. "But secondly, he allowed us to take the 'directness' that Brian had, which was a little more acerbic and withering, and re-examine it through a whole new sporty personality."

Initially, however, the team worried a bit about the two-time Super Bowl champ taking over the lead after Cox's memorable turn.

"Travis is a good 8 inches taller than Brian Cox. Nevertheless, those are big shoes to fill for someone who isn't a professional actor," says agency creative director Ryan Buckley. "We were actually blown away by Travis' charisma on camera. We got a sense of it after seeing his SNL performance—but you never know. Everybody was laughing on set after the second shot of the day. That’s when we knew we had a fun campaign on our hands." (Now, maybe Taylor Swift will be the guy's friend.)

As for the future of the "Overly Direct" concept, "We’re playing it close to the chest for now," says Winters. "We're very happy with this construct. 'Directness' is such an interesting-yet-simple approach that uniquely belongs to DirecTV. And the ability to bring more and more people into the ‘Overly Direct’ role makes it endlessly flexible."


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