The Rock In Battle With NFL Over XFL’s Houston Logo

Videos by OutKick

It appears Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is getting a firm lesson in just how picky the NFL can be, and it’s all about helmet design.

As you may know, Johnson and his partners bought the XFL, formerly owned by wrestling mastermind Vince McMahon, and are getting teams prepared for a 2022 kickoff. But one those teams has a logo that too closely resembles an NFL logo of yesteryear. At least, it does according to the NFL.

The design in debate belongs to the new Houston Roughnecks, whose capital “H” in front of an Oiler-looking thingy is being called too close to the old Houston Oilers’ Oiler-looking thingy. You can see a more-professional explanation in the video below from trademark lawyer Josh Gerben.

Now, the Oilers no longer exist, as they moved to Nashville and became the Tennessee Titans in 1997. But apparently, the NFL kept the Oilers’ trademark. Otherwise, it wouldn’t have a case.

Why the NFL is making a case now, however, is anyone’s guess. It’s just the NFL being the NFL. Think anyone really cares if the Roughnecks’ logo looks similar to the Oilers’ logo? Aren’t there great issues with which the NFL should be concerning itself? Mostly, how much longer do we have to buy up all that Roughnecks merchandise?

Written by Sam Amico

Sam Amico spent 15 years covering the NBA for Sports Illustrated, FOX Sports and, along with a few other spots, and currently runs his own basketball website on the side,


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  1. The NFL is right to pursue this. This XFL derrick logo is so derivative. Roughneck is a oil rig worker, a.k.a an “Oiler.” The only thing they didn’t do was steal the color scheme from the Oilers. For that, they poached the Texans’. XFL needs to come up with an original concept and not try to soak up the goodwill that the Houston Oilers and Texans have with Houstonians.

  2. DEwayne killed the XFL when he came out and told half the country not to bother watching. Turns out the half that actually liked sports was the half he insulted.

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