Go behind the scenes of RCX Sports to see what it took to bring NFL FLAG Championships at Pro Bowl Games to life   

This post is a part of a series showcasing RCX Sports’ marquee events across all of their youth sports properties.   

Beyond our leagues and regular seasonal programming, RCX Sports runs events for each of our youth sports properties – NFL FLAG, MLB Pitch, Hit & Run, NHL STREET and MLS GO. From tournaments to showcases, each event is designed to engage our athletes and fuel their passion for the game.   

In other words, we hone in on the very best of what youth sports offer and bring it to life through interactive, inclusive, and fun events, creating a long-lasting impact on our athletes’ lives.   

During the first weekend of February, we operated our largest NFL FLAG Championships at Pro Bowl Games in Orlando, Florida, with more than 2,000 NFL FLAG athletes.  

Throughout the process, we learned a lot—and created a case study of our work and vision, as it has inspired us to continue building memorable events.   

Assembling the Dream Team  

Many hands were at work across our business, including: branding, content capture, creative, league success/customer service, marketing, officials, operations, partners, pro-league involvement/logistics, public relations, volunteers, and more.   

“A tentpole event like NFL FLAG Championships at Pro Bowl Games requires more than just impeccable planning  from the marketing department—it demands investing time in assembling the right team,” said Ashley Babcock, Sr. Director of Digital Marketing at RCX Sports. “From hiring the right people to nurturing individual growth, RCX Sports has allowed me to foster a collaborative environment where each member owns their expertise…The result? A team that operates seamlessly, devoid of drama, while delivering an extraordinary experience.”   

In fact, planning for the event began over a year out, starting with the creative vision, partnerships, marketing, and more. Every step taken pre-event was to ensure success for the day of. For example, each flag football team at the NFL FLAG Championships at Pro Bowl Games—out of 240 total—were able to check in within 10 minutes.  

“Walking into the field through the front gates put into perspective how much work this event was to plan and set up,” said Joe Leccessi, Director of Operations and Customer Service at RCX Sports. “I also loved walking through the playing fields and seeing how organized the fields and refs were to keep the tournament on time—seeing so many moving pieces work together was amazing.”   

“Working more with the ops team provided clearer communication and allowed me to plan ahead for content,” said Evans Hicks, Videographer at RCX Sports. “I was blown away by the production value. Not only does it look good on camera, but the fans loved it! I felt it was an accurate representation of RCX Sports and its class as a company.”   

World Class Event, World Class Partners 

To put the events together, we partnered with some of the best talent the industry has to offer. The NFL FLAG Championships at Pro Bowl were made possible through partnerships with the NFL, Build A Sign, Extreme Networks, GameChanger, Gatorade, Oakley, Players Health, Sports Connect, Subway and TeamSnap.  

“Connecting and deepening relationships with partners gave me the opportunity to see our partners’ goals come to life,” said Josh Kincaid, Manager of Marketing Partnerships at RCX Sports“From Oakley awarding eyewear to top athletes to Players Health giving families a source of respite in their coffee shop space, there was truly a genuine intent behind each partner activation.”   

Athletes Adding Star Power   

Throughout the tournament and showcase, we planned for special appearances from the pros, including Peyton Manning, one of the best quarterbacks of all-time and former Super Bowl Champion, Justin Jefferson, Vikings’ wide receiver, Diana Flores, quarterback of Mexico’s gold medal-winning Women’s Flag Football National Team, adding to the event’s prestige.

“When the professional athletes came to the event, it seemed like every one of them enjoyed it,” said Cade Gnazzo, graphic designer at RCX Sports. “The few that I talked to got really into the games, coached the kids, and said they loved what NFL FLAG was doing for the kids. When you get feedback like that from professional football players, it’s very fulfilling.”

Haley Adams, who runs RCX Sports social content, took in her favorite moment at the NFL FLAG Championships: “When I captured the 17u girls meeting Peyton Manning—he shook their hands and both girls couldn’t contain their excitement! Such an awesome moment for them that they’ll remember forever.”

Executing the Game Plan 

Logistically we needed to prepare for our largest operations to date, ensuring a seamless set up and fast take down.

“Working alongside the operations and digital media team showed just how many people it takes to put on a successful event of this size,” said Kincaid.

“As our team gathered in the media tent during a lull between games, I witnessed their collective effort and dedication—it was incredibly inspiring,” said Jacob Price, Creative Coordinator at RCX Sports. “It illuminated the potential to elevate our content to unimaginable heights, fostering an environment where these athletes could be celebrated as true superstars—not just on the field, but off it as well.”   

In short, we’re beyond impressed with the contributions of our teammates and are proud of what they worked to build.   

“Connecting with different departments and meeting teammates face-to-face significantly contributed to the event’s success,” Shannon Loerzel, Senior Customer Service Coordinator at RCX Sports. “Additionally, it sets a positive foundation for remote collaboration between departments post-event.”  Shannon added: “The RCX team united from across the country to support the NFL FLAG Championships, experiencing the passion of league organizers, families, coaches, and players for NFL FLAG. And celebrating teams from coast to coast as they achieved the incredible milestone of becoming national champions.”   

NFL Honors  

The celebrations didn’t end at the tournament. Our team contributed to a historic NFL Honors, where two exceptional flag football athletes were recognized for their accomplishments—both on and off the field. In 2023, more than 600,000 youth athletes competed in flag football, and Ryder Noche and Allison Gandlin were awarded the first ever NFL FLAG Players of the Year presented by Toyota at the 13th annual NFL Honors. They were welcomed on stage by Diana Flores and Tyreek Hill, both NFL FLAG football ambassadors.