With still two weeks in the regular season and the playoffs to go, Washington Redskins rookie quarterback Robert Griffin III’s No. 10 jersey already has sold more than any other player’s in a single season since the NFL started keeping track six years ago, according to ESPN.
It has been an impressive season so far for Griffin, the No. 2 overall pick in the NFL Draft who has made the Redskins relevant again. They are in first place in the NFC East and can make the playoffs if they win their last two games. Griffin has been dynamic in leading the team.
And clearly his performance is resonating with fans. The jerseys sales numbers are calculated from on league’s official Internet store, NFLshop.com, league spokeswoman Joanna Hunter told ESPN.com.
While the league would not give numbers, it did indicate that Griffin moved into the top spot by overtaking Brett Favre, who previously held the record for most jerseys sold in a year twice — with the New York Jets and in 2008 and Minnesota Vikings in 2009.
In other jersey sales news, Peyton Manning of the Denver Broncos rose to the fourth-highest in sales, bypassing the Dallas Cowboys’ Tony Romo from 2007.
What makes Griffin’s accomplishment even more impressive is that the NFL’s fiscal year runs from April 1 to March 31, meaning that he has the league’s highest-selling jersey with 3½ months to spare.
The NFL changed its official apparel manufacturer this year from Reebok to Nike, which signed a five-year deal. That could be a factor in the sales for Griffin’s jersey.
Get this: For December, Redskins merchandise sales on Fanatics.com — one of the nation’s largest online retailers — is up 252 percent compared to the same dates last year, which is the highest percentage increase among NFL teams this month.
Remarkably, Fanatics spokesman Meier Raivich said that an impressive 87 percent of Redskins merchandise the company has sold since the start of the season has been purchased outside the Washington, D.C., Maryland or Virginia areas, meaning Griffin is an national sensation, not just in the Nation’s Capital.
Everything related to Griffin is selling, including the line of socks that adidas started producing for the quarterback after signing him to an endorsement deal. Adidas spokesman Michael Ehrlich says the company has sold out of the socks, which sell at the premium price point of $20 per pair.