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Microsoft tries to show that the NFL is now happy with Surface

Technically Incorrect: The relationship between the league and the tablet has had its issues. But a new ad seems to say it's all good.

Technically Incorrect offers a slightly twisted take on the tech that's taken over our lives.


Wait, Todd Gurley doesn't look happy.

Microsoft; YouTube screenshot by Chris Matyszczyk/CNET

There was a time when all was not well between Microsoft and the NFL.

Microsoft had paid a lot of money -- some say millions of dollars -- to have its tablet-laptop hybrid appear on the sidelines.

But NFL announcers kept referring to Surfaces as iPads. So did NFL players. Famed New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick even claimed Surfaces break down a lot.

The NFL is happy with Surface now. The players know this. And I do too.

That's because I've just espied a new ad for the Surface Pro 4. It features NFL stars such as the Saints' Drew Brees, the Packers' Clay Matthews and The Rams' Todd Gurley.

They're all training very hard. They're all using their Surface Pro 4s for analyzing and monitoring, and for talking to their kids.

Matthews even perches his on the side of a swimming pool so he can take notes on it while he's still in the water.

The music here is very important. It's "If You're Happy and You Know It" sung by Brees' 5-year-old son Bowen.

Can you feel that subliminal surge? Can you admire how the ad's makers have slipped in the sentiment to counter previous impressions?

The tagline says that despite the players trusting the Surface, it's actually "built for the fans."

Which some might translate as, "We're paying these famous people a lot of money because we really need to sell mountains of these things."