The National Football League and gaming organization FaZe Clan have partnered to celebrate the first virtual NFL Draft and Draft-a-Thon fund-raiser with a capsule collection.
The capsule, which is composed of a T-shirt for $40 and a hoodie for $80, features NFL and FaZe Clan branding and logos for all NFL teams, as well as designs inspired by football arcade games from the late Nineties and early Aughts. The collection launches on April 23, the first day of the NFL Draft, on the NFL Shop and FaZe Clan web sites.
FaZe Clan chief executive officer Lee Trink said the capsule represents the first time the NFL has collaborated with a team outside of its organization. The professional football league’s relationship with FaZe Clan dates to the beginning of the 2019 season, when the league tapped the gaming organization to host a kickoff party that was attended by rapper and FaZe Clan member Lil Yachty and NBA All-Star Ben Simmons. Attendees also received jerseys on which they could press FaZe Clan logos.
“The NFL and sports teams look to us to tap into our culture and show how FaZe Clan members interact with these sports,” said Trink, who also pointed to collaborations with Manchester City in 2019 and the Los Angeles Kings this month.
In addition to launching the collection for the NFL Draft, FaZe Clan members who are quarantined will host a watch party and capture content for the first round of the NFL Draft during the Draft-a-Thon. The NFL is raising funds during the Draft-a-Thon to support the American Red Cross, Salvation Army, Meals on Wheels American and Feeding America, United Way and CDC Foundation’s All of Us: Combat Coronavirus Campaign.
“The NFL will be throwing to the guys to have some reaction shots,” Trink revealed about the watch party. “We’re going to be involved with some of the draft picks. Not bringing video games into it, but bringing our gamers in to interact with the NFL.”
He added, “We’re built for digital connectivity. The backbone of the whole community is being connected digitally. There’s impact on the business operationally, but we’re uniquely equipped to adapt to the challenges at a time like this. It’s not as challenging for us to take a few steps back from the scale of production. We’re providing our fans with some sense of continued normalcy. I think that actually provides some important relief for a lot of fans.”
Also this month, FaZe Clan entered an exclusive distribution partnership with e-commerce platform Ntwrk. The platform also led FaZe Clan’s $40 million Series A funding round that included participants such as entertainers like Pitbull, Offset of Migos and actor Chris O’Donnell, Epic Records ceo and chair Sylvia Rhone, professional skateboarder Nyjah Huston, and NBA athletes Meyers Leonard, Josh Hart and Jamal Murray.