NFL players can no longer wear the insanely popular “Beats by Dre” headphones during the games because of a long-term agreement the NFL signed with Bose in March.
According to the terms of this deal, only the Bose logo can appear on headsets that the coaches wear. The agreement also permits Bose to request the NFL to prevent its coaches and players from wearing headphones from any other company.
The NFL has stated to the press that it has “longstanding policies” that prevent “branded exposure” either at interviews or on the field unless it has authorized such exposure. Drafted early in the nineties, these are NFL polices and not policies created by any of the sponsors of the league. The league has confirmed that Bose has nothing to do with the enforcement of NFL policies.
NFL players, therefore, cannot wear their Beats headphones either during the matches or at NFL events that get media coverage. They have to refrain from wearing their Beats headphones for ninety minutes after the conclusion of a match. They are also not allowed to wear Beats headphones at workout sessions or training camps, at which they may have to face an interview.
Richard Sherman, a top Beats fan, may have enjoyed the freedom to wear his Beats headphones while getting off a plane just before the Super Bowl XLVIII. But he will no longer be able to do so in a similar situation when this season comes to an end.
Nobody knows how much the NFL is paying Bose to be its exclusive headset provider. Most players have ignored the ban or put a piece of tape of the “B” logo.