Does Dale Earnhardt Jr. want to be NASCAR’s version of Peyton Manning?
Nationwide Insurance has kept former NFL great Peyton Manning busy during retirement with a series of humorous commercials that include the infamous “Nationwide is on your side” jingle.
During his opening remarks at Tuesday’s retirement announcement, Dale Earnhardt Jr. took time to recognize his family’s long-standing relationship with the company.
“Steve Rasmussen, Terrance Williams and Jim McCoy, all the folks at Nationwide, our partnership goes back a very long time,” Earnhardt said. “Maybe you guys heard it, but the Earnhardt family has been with Nationwide for more than 30 years.”
But then Earnhardt snuck in a suggestion that many people may not have caught immediately: once he retires from Cup after this season, he’d like to continue doing commercials for the company in a similar way that Manning has during his retirement.
“But what I’m proud of more is we’ve accomplished a lot in the last 10 years,” Earnhardt said. “I hope you guys are as proud as I am, and by the way, Jim, I know you’re here in the room. I’m just going to say what everyone else here in the room is thinking, your brilliant use of the retired Peyton Manning is to be commended, if not replicated.”
You could almost hear the wheels turning in Earnhardt’s head with some ideas for funny commercials.
Here’s some of Manning’s more memorable post-retirement commercials for Nationwide: