NFL uses John Harbaugh to promote women's fashion line

The NFL leaned heavily on the Baltimore Ravens when crafting its newest commercial that promotes its new women’s apparel line. The 30-second spot, which premieres tomorrow during the Ravens game against the Denver Broncos on NBC, features coach John Harbaugh and player Ray Rice’s jersey.

Harbaugh’s speech to the Ravens in 2009 serves as the commercial’s dramatic voice-over. Rice’s jersey is also modeled.

"When we listened to those words we thought it was a speech that could transcend to our fans," said Jaime Weston, the NFL’s vice president of advertising and creative. “It didn't hurt that they are Super Bowl-winning champions. Nothing was better than the Ray Rice jersey at the end with the model doing his pose. It perfectly summed up the spot."

The commercial is the latest attempt by the NFL to court women, who account for 45 percent of its fan base, according to Weston. It features fashion bloggers like Lindsey Calla, who publishes the Saucy Glossie blog, as well as the wives of NFL players Jason Witten and Ray Farmer.

"[Our women’s apparel] is authentic to the NFL," Weston said. "We have such a emotional brand. That really reflects in our women’s apparel and offerings. It's got to be authentic…It is important for women to know that there was something to wear other than their husband's jersey."

The NFL tapped another Baltimore connection as part of its partnership with Meesh & Mia Inc., a fashion line for women who are sports fans.

Stacy Keibler, a former Ravens cheerleader turned professional wrestler and actress, is the face for the company’s newest collection of clothes, which will be unveiled this month in New York.

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