Coors Light tiptoes around rules regarding beer endorsements with Patrick Mahomes ad

Generic boutique beer, 2 February 2006. AFR Picture by JIM RICE
Getty Images

Sometimes, advertising agencies have to get a little creative with their creative.

Coors Light has found a clever way to navigate NFL do-as-we-say-not-as-we-do rules for players regarding beer endorsements by hiring Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes to market a Coors Light. Literally.

Because the rules prohibit active payers from directly endorsing beer, the Mahomes spot pitches a branded flashlight. (They’re actually selling the Coors Light flashlight, with proceeds going to the 15 and the Mahomies Foundation.)

Before 2019, active players couldn’t be used in any ads for beer brands. As explained by, a restriction of the rules allowed players to appear in certain types of ads, but they can appear only in their uniforms — with images generated by the Associated Press.

We sent an email to the league yesterday seeking further clarification on whether Coors Light is stepping on any sort of line with this wink-nod effort to use Mahomes in a non-beer beer commercial. We received no response.

The league’s discretion could be influenced in part by the fact that Molson Coors will re-enter the Super Bowl ad game after more than 30 years on the sidelines. Anheuser-Busch recently decided to surrender its exclusive right to advertise alcohol during the Super Bowl, opening the door for the maker of Coors Lite and Miller Lite and other Budweiser competitors.

The issue of alcohol advertising oozes with hypocrisy. The NFL has an official beer sponsor, an official wine sponsor, and official spirits sponsor. But the NFL officially prevents its players from making as much money as they can via similar arrangements.

Who cares if Mahomes or any other player does a commercial in which he holds a can of beer? This random church-lady vibe seems bizarre, given that the NFL has decided in recent years to put its hand out for free money from the purveyor of almost every legalized vice, from beer to wine to booze to gambling to (inevitably) marijuana.

15 responses to “Coors Light tiptoes around rules regarding beer endorsements with Patrick Mahomes ad

  1. The league (owners) made $230 from Anheuser Busch last year but has a problem with players endorsing them? Goodell is the worst.

  2. The league (owners) made $230 million from Anheuser Busch last year but has a problem with players endorsing them? Goodell is the worst. My guess is that the league doesn’t want the players endorsing non-anheuser busch products.

  3. Sincerely… (crushes can) L.C. Greenwood

    Sincerely… (fails at attempt to crush can) Bert Jones.


  4. The NFL’s hypocrisy is mindblowing! This is like how the personal conduct policy applies to the players but not the owners!

  5. Because the ad runs on You Tube and social media I probably would have never seen it. However, the link in this article goes to a site that carries the video. It was excellent and I laughed out loud.
    If there is an official NFL sponsor of a category of product, then I understand the NFL not allowing active players to endorse other companies that make the product, IF the player is in uniform or the team name is used in the commercial. But if there is an official beer of the NFL, then players and coaches should be allowed to endorse other brands so long as they are out of uniform and the team name is not mentioned!

  6. Never understood why the league can make a fortune off of alcohol-related advertising, but the players can’t.

  7. The issue of alcohol advertising oozes with hypocrisy.. this statement simply shows his ignorance on the issue, or his desire to ignore the topic. This isn’t a moral should you drink issue. I venture to say this is the same thing when the league signed Nike. Player could not wear non nike gear. Makes sense. If these kind of rules weren’t in place the field on Sunday would look like NASCAR. So let’s be clear this has nothing to do with if you should or should not drink, it is about how you spend you money when you do drink. Also remember NFL revenue also goes to the players too. So for some of you to act like the greedy owners , don’t forget the greedy players directly benefit from the owners greed too.

  8. Owners can buy race horses, endorse sketchy politicians, and do whatever they like. But players can’t make money endorsing beer. A totally legal beverage that almost every adult in the country drinks.

  9. It looks like a heavy duty Maglite.
    The Coors version actually costs less than a Maglite.

  10. They are allowed to do drugs and still play in the league. I do not understand why not. Just wait until the XFL and USFL start letting there players do it. Then this will change.

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