Rob Gronkowski Will Try to Kick a Field Goal Live During Super Bowl for FanDuel
Can Rob Gronkowski kick a 25-yard field goal on Super Bowl Sunday? The question never came up during Gronk's 11-year career and five Big Game appearances. Probably because he played tight end. They catch passes. Then run a bit. Kicking is someone else's problem.
Now, that's all changed, thanks to FanDuel and Wieden+Kennedy, which tapped Gronk for a "Kick of Destiny" during the third quarter on Feb. 12.
He'll aim for the uprights in a live third-quarter spot, making the attempt at an undisclosed location near Glendale, Arizona's State Farm Stadium, site of Super Bowl LVII. If Gronk succeeds, folks placing Super Bowl bets of $5 or more via FanDuel between now and kickoff could win part of a $10 million pot. If not, well, dude still gets paid. (No fool, Gronk!)
Spots like the one above will run drive interest in the run-up to the game. You'll note that Gronk name-checked his former New England Patriots teammate Adam Vinatieri, the greatest placekicker ev-ah. Might Adam also appear in the campaign? Spoiler: We'd take that bet!
For its first Super Bowl foray, FanDuel seeks to build a brand story over several weeks by mixing live action with commercials.
"We are looking to leverage all of FanDuel's media during the NFL playoffs to create a narrative that culminates with the Super Bowl," W+K New York GCD Gerard Caputo tells Muse. "While this is a Super Bowl assignment, it's also about the full journey that builds to that big moment."
He continues: "We see lots of big commercials every year with celebrities and borrowed interest, which are very entertaining, but we want to engage more than just entertain. In addition, we wanted FanDuel to feel truly part of the game and put something on the line as the leader in the category and a growing sports entertainment brand."
Makes sense. But why Gronkowski? Sure, he's beloved. But some of us feel Gronked into pulp by the man's seemingly endless ad appearances.
Naturally, Caputo disagrees, arguing that Rob's ubiquity provides "a ton of recognition with core football fans that are important to FanDuel. He has appeal on a broader spectrum."
"It's not just a situation where a celebrity shows up for a couple of days, you film them, and get a social post right before the Super Bowl," Caputo adds. "This person needs to perform live with an audience of over 100 million people watching. They have to be up for this and get it. He has the right energy and attitude we need to pull this off."
So, it's Gronk as we've never seen him, a fresh role for a familiar pitchman that leverages his athletic abilities rather than just doubling down on his goofy-bro persona. (Though we still get some of that. It's still Gronk, after all.)
A second ad breaks Jan. 16, with a third installment launching at month's end. Support includes digital, social and OOH elements.
In a related development, FanDuel archrival DraftKings will make its third Super Bowl appearance, running a commercial with Kevin Hart. He won't be asked to kick a field goal. More's the pity.
PROJECT NAME: "Kick of Destiny"
AGENCY: W+K NEW YORK
CHIEF CREATIVE OFFICER: Scott Dungate
PRESIDENT: Jiah Choi
GROUP CREATIVE DIRECTOR: Gerard Caputo
SR COPYWRITER: Barry Katz
SR ART DIRECTOR: Alex Kaplan
ART DIRECTOR: Hannah Campbell
HEAD OF INTEGRATED PRODUCTION: Nick Setounski
EXECUTIVE PRODUCER: Sam Kilbreth
SR PRODUCERS: Bianca Cochran, Tania Pirozzi, Rodrigo Nino
SR ART PRODUCER: Diana Pam
PRINT PRODUCER: Wayne Treptow
GROUP ACCOUNT DIRECTOR: Ryan Johnson
ACCOUNT DIRECTOR: Perry Kayla Fox
ACCOUNT SUPERVISOR: Nico Rodriguez
ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE: Will Parker
SR PROJECT MANAGER: Alex Doomany
GROUP STRATEGY DIRECTOR: Stéphane Missier
STRATEGY DIRECTOR: David Ceng
COMMUNICATIONS PLANNING DIRECTOR: Zack Green
SR COMMS STRATEGIST: Javaad Beg
SR BUSINESS AFFAIRS MANAGER: Paul FitzGerald
BUSINESS AFFAIRS MANAGER: Ivian Nunez
TRAFFIC SUPERVISOR: Sonia Bisono
TRAFFIC MANAGER: Jacqueline Crane
HEAD OF STUDIO: Chris Whalley
STUDIO MANAGER: Jill Kearton
SR STUDIO ARTIST: Nate D'Alessandro
DESIGN LEAD: James Hughes
JR DESIGNER: Tyler Smith
PRODUCTION COMPANY: Arts & Sciences
DIRECTOR: Mike Warzin
MANAGING PARTNER: Marc Marrie
MANAGING DIRECTOR: Mal Ward
EXECUTIVE PRODUCER: Christa Skotland
HEAD OF PRODUCTION: Milena Milicevic
LINE PRODUCER: Joey Zadwarny
DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY: Autumn Durald
PRODUCTION DESIGNER: Eric Archer
FIRST ASSISTANT DIRECTOR: Jason Lombardo
EDITORIAL COMPANY: ARCADE NY
EDITOR: Dave Anderson
ASSISTANT EDITOR: Sam Barden
PRODUCER: Ellen Lavery
EP/PARTNER: Sila Soyer
VFX COMPANY: PARLIAMENT
COLORIST COMPANY: COMPANY 3
COLORIST: Tom Poole
COLOR PRODUCER: Shannen Troup
DESIGN & ANIMATION: LOS YORK
SOUND DESIGN, RECORD, AND MIX: BRIAN GOODHEART
ORIGINAL MUSIC: WALKER
MANAGING DIRECTOR: Sara Matarazzo
SENIOR EXECUTIVE PRODUCER: Stephanie Pigott
SENIOR PRODUCER: Danielle Soury
PHOTOGRAPHER: Emily Shur
PHOTOGRAPHER'S AGENT: Giant Artists
RETOUCHING: 150PROOF & Co.
HEAD OF RETOUCHING: Chris McClelland
RETOUCHER: Kevin Walker