The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has turned down an application from Miami Dolphins defensive back Minkah Fitzpatrick to register “Fitzmagic,” and for the same reason that caused a bit of a flap when the former Alabama All-American applied for the trademark in September.
“Registration is refused because the applied-for mark consists of or includes matter which may falsely suggest a connection with Ryan Fitzpatrick,” the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office wrote. “… Although Ryan Fitzpatrick is not connected with the goods and/or services provided by applicant under the applied-for mark, Ryan Fitzpatrick is so well-known that consumers would presume a connection. …
“Under Trademark Act Section 2(a), the registration of a mark that ‘consists of or comprises matter that may falsely suggest a connection with persons, institutions, beliefs, or national symbols’ is prohibited.”
Ryan Fitzpatrick is a quarterback who started eight games for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2018, his 14th NFL season.
Minkah Fitzpatrick completed his rookie NFL season with the Miami Dolphins on Sunday after entering the league in April as the 11th player picked in the 2018 draft.
In September, Fitzpatrick said he wasn’t trying to usurp the quarterback’s nickname. He sought the trademark to use with a line of apparel that he planned.
When Minkah Fitzpatrick’s mother pointed out via Twitter that her son had picked up the nickname in high school, it brought “some very unnecessary comments directed toward myself and my family,” in Fitzpatrick’s view.
“It kind of upset me a whole lot because it’s my mom,” Fitzpatrick said at the time. “I don’t really want her to be involved in anything that’s directed toward me. Anybody is protective over their mother, but she’s very protective over myself.
“She’s seen some of the stuff that’s come my way. I’ve dealt with it before. I played on a big stage in college. I’ve had my fair share of mistakes where I got all that type of backlash, so I kind of knew how to handle it. She’s never really been through something like that, so she was being a protective mother, doing what every mother would do and try to protect her son.”
At Alabama, Fitzpatrick was a unanimous All-American in 2017 for the Crimson Tide’s CFP national-championship team after earning first-team recognition from The Associated Press and American Football Coaches Association in 2016. He joined Michigan’s Charles Woodson and LSU’s Patrick Peterson as the only players to win both the Thorpe Award, given to the nation’s best defensive back, and the Bednarik Award, presented to the nation’s best defensive player.
In his first NFL season, Fitzpatrick registered 80 tackles and two interceptions (with one returned for a touchdown) while playing every position in the Dolphins’ secondary. He got on the field for 944 defensive snaps (third-most on the team) and 100 special-teams plays.
Mark Inabinett is a sports reporter for Alabama Media Group. Follow him on Twitter at @AMarkG1.