Jeans Company Accuses Browns of Copying Commercial for Schedule Release

Aug 3, 2023; Canton, Ohio, USA; A Cleveland Browns helmet on the field at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium.
Aug 3, 2023; Canton, Ohio, USA; A Cleveland Browns helmet on the field at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium. / Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
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The list of teams that could botch an NFL schedule release is not long, but the Cleveland Browns are certainly among them.

On Wednesday, along with the rest of the league, the Browns rolled out their schedule for 2024. Beyond the usual parade of dates—the Dallas Cowboys on Sept. 8, the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sept. 15, and so on and so forth—Cleveland posted the kind of cutesy release video that has become commonplace throughout pro football.

The only problem? The Browns' cutesy video looked a lot like a very similar cutesy video—more specifically, a 2023 ad for the Chicago-based jeans company Mugsy.

On social media, Cael Schwartz of Mugsy accused Cleveland of cribbing from his company's commercial—including the use of bowling legend Pete Weber and several similar camera angles and Weber mannerisms.

"We will not sue, however we ask that the NFL buys 1 million pairs of jeans," Schwartz wrote Thursday.

Again: How many other teams do you know that could turn a schedule release into an apparent copyright fracas?


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Patrick Andres

PATRICK ANDRES

Patrick Andres has been a Staff Writer on the Breaking & Trending News Team at Sports Illustrated since 2022. Before SI, his work appeared in The Blade, Athlon Sports, Fear the Sword, and Diamond Digest. Patrick has covered everything from zero-attendance Big Ten basketball to a seven-overtime college football game. He is a graduate of Northwestern University.