According to reports from ESPN and Fox News, the NFL pressured Colts fan Roy Fox, who had bought the trademarks to the “Harbowl” and “Harbaugh bowl” last season in anticipation for the two brothers going at it in the Super Bowl.
Once the league became aware of this, they sent a letter to Fox asking him to give up the trademark. Fox told ESPN that he would be willing to do this in return for season tickets to the Colts, to payback the original trademark costs, and a signed picture of Roger Goodell. The NFL denied all three requests.
The NFL then told Fox if he keeps the trademarks, he will be sued by the league and forced to pay all legal fees. Fox then just “willingly” gave up the trademarks because of the threats.
With all due respect to the NFL, this is a horrible act. The braintrusts who run the league didn't have the smarts to think of the trademark originally and now they're threatening an innocent Colts fan who thought ahead of time. Keep in mind this is the same league that argued with their players for months on how to split a billion dollars worth of revenue. The league couldn't just pay the man's simple request? It's criminal to think that these are the type of people who are running one of the sports leagues in history.
There is no evidence that Roger Goodell had any part in these threats. However, this instance is one of many black eyes that has defaced NFL during his reign as commissioner. The NFL has never seen the amount of lawsuits that it has faced while under Goodell. Goodell should show some leadership for a change and give Fox what he requested in the first place. The NFL executives who made these threats should be ashamed and fired from their positions. And if it is discovered that Roger Goodell played a part in this, he should resign from his post and issue a public apology to Mr. Fox and fans of the NFL for a lack of leadership.