Every year the NFL Players Association (NFLPA) reveals their Rising 50 list, which “identifies players poised to break out and rank among next season’s top-sellers of all officially licensed merchandise.”
These players are the future stars as predicted by the marketing and licensing arm of the NFLPA, NFL Players Inc.
Tops on their list is Arizona Cardinals do-it-all running back, David Johnson, with three more running backs making up the top 4. Devonta Freeman of the Atlanta Falcons is second, the Miami Dolphins’ Jay Ajayi is third, with Chicago Bears’ tailback Jordan Howard at number four.
I find it interesting that running backs feature so prominently in their Rising 50, when the national narrative is all about how teams are devaluing the position. From a marketing standpoint, these players are just as important as ever.
Jordan Howard isn’t the only Bear on the list, checking in at number 25 is rookie quarterback, Mitchell Trubisky. I’m sure there’ll be plenty of fans that run out for their #10 Trubisky jersey, then if he ends up playing and looking decent, we’ll see another uptick in sales.
I’m a little surprised last year’s number one draft pick, Leonard Floyd, wasn’t on the list. I’m expecting a good year from his new and improved bulked up frame.
Do you guys see Howard and Trubisky as the most marketable 2017 Bears?