The NFL Goes Pink?

Everything turns pink in the month of October, and for good reason. Companies of all types step up to the plate to raise awareness for a wonderful cause. Breast cancer affects millions, one in eight women will develop it in their lifetime. Since so many are affected by this awful disease, it is no surprise that so many businesses take the initiative to raise money and awareness.


The NFL, although known for making everything from their uniforms to penalty flags pink, has been under fire recently for their misleading campaign. It has been said that no money actually goes to breast cancer research, not even a single dollar. The proceeds from the campaign are donated to the American Cancer Society (ACS), who then use the funds to build awareness and provide screenings for women over the age of 40. A representative from the ACS, Tara Peters, spoke to a writer at VICE Sports and said, “The money that we receive from NFL has nothing to do with our research program.” VICE also found out that all of the NFL donations go to an “ACS CHANGE program,” which awards grants to community health facilities located within 100 miles of an NFL city with the purpose of educating women about breast health.

Being educated and getting your screenings is no doubt important for being proactive with your health but it is not the same as diagnostic mammography. As research provides these new facts it is easy to see why the NFL would be receiving criticism for dishing out their medical advice by saying that “Annual Screening Saves Lives.”

The past few months have not been the best for the NFL or its image. They are usually applauded for the participation and donations towards breast cancer “research.” But following suit of the recent scandals, the generosity of the NFL is misleading and fans are left unhappy once again. The organization has had a major hit to their image, brand, and reputation. The scandals regarding abuse towards women and children have already received a lot of attention, and now with this misleading campaign information being fed to customers, the image takes another hit. An organization’s brand is supposed to display the vision and values and what is believed to be moral or ethical. While the employees of the NFL are trying to take initiatives to show they don’t support domestic abuse or child abuse, such as the new policy regarding domestic violence and punishments, those things are erased when a new scandal occurs. They are donating to a good cause, however it is not as much as they say and doesn’t go towards what is being advertised. The organization may be trying to make up for the scandal and decisions made in the past, but it seems as though they can’t keep up. What does this say about the brand of the NFL and the people who work for it? A brand is supposed to show what is believed to be ethical and the vision and values of the organization. So what is the vision of the NFL and what do they think is morally right?

By: Kelli Hall, Stephanie Jordan, Morgan McCleaf, Shawn Rause, and Danielle Walters

Photo Credit: The Business of Sports