The NFL has rejected a paid Super Bowl commercial from firearm manufacturer Daniel Defense, even though the spot appears not to violate the league’s policy on weapons advertising because the commercial in question makes no mention of firearms. The commercial would have aired during Super Bowl XLVIII in February.
According to Guns & Ammo magazine, the commercial was designed with the advertising policies of many television markets in mind, and does not portray the use of weapons or feature any of the company’s products. Rather, it focuses on family protection. Its only visual representation of weaponry is a brief silhouette of the company’s DDM4 rifle as the commercial fades out.
From Guns & Ammo:
The NFL’s Advertising Policy addresses several Prohibited Advertising Categories, including guidelines for ads featuring alcohol, video games, movies, prescription drugs, and, of course, firearms.
The firearms portion of the NFL’s Prohibited Advertising Categories states:
“5. Firearms, ammunition or other weapons are prohibited; however, stores that sell firearms and ammunitions (e.g., outdoor stores and camping stores) will be permitted, provided they sell other products and the ads do not mention firearms, ammunition or other weapons.”
According to these guidelines, Daniel Defense’s Super Bowl commercial does not violate NFL policy for two reasons:
Daniel Defense has a brick-and-mortar store, where they sell products other than firearms such as apparel.
The commercial itself does not mention firearms, ammunition or weaponry.
Since the silhouette of the rifle seemed to be the sticking point, Daniel Defense told the league it would replace the image of the weapon with one of the American flag, or with a quote from the 2nd Amendment.
No dice — the NFL flatly rejected that offer, too.
But the league did allow this ad, bought by Mayors Against Illegal Guns, to air in targeted markets during the Super Bowl last year: