Technology and the NFL

I was writing about the NFL Off Season in June, and here we are already in October. with the year end just a couple of months away. I was reading about virtual reality the other day, when I realized that the NFL players used it. With the Superbowl just a few months away, I got thinking, that there is so much more to the NFL than just the football.  I decided to explore some of the technology used by the NFL.


RFID bracelet by Becky Stern

The NFL has a lot of money. A lot. The good thing is they are not shy to spend it. Apart from using it to keep their young fans happy with apps like the Game Day Heroes, they are spending big bucks on other technology. As technology becomes affordable, it is making its presence felt in areas we would never have imagined.

Fantasy Football is a phenomenon. That dry subject, statistics, is the core of this game. The statistics from real players are taken, teams are built from real American football teams, and players compete. People might not watch a real match in a stadium and enjoy the hot dogs, but they just might sit at home, gather the statistics, build teams and make money. Not surprisingly, fantasy football has entered classrooms too. To keep interest levels high, NFL has introduced a player tracking system, based on RFID technology. As a part of this endeavor, RFID chips were introduced into players clothing, to collect statistics on a player’s speed, distance and direction traveled during each game, in real time, and fans can access this on the upgraded NFL 2015 app for Xbox One and Windows 10. Others can use this real time motion tracking data, for a variety of uses. Some of the teams are also using these statistics to tailor training methods for their players, so as to reduce stress and injury.

One other major use of new technology at the NFL is the use of virtual reality. Instead of watching older games(as training), players can relive it as if they were on the field. Mostly used to train quarterbacks, teams feel this saves their valuable players from the physical wear and tear by not putting him out on an actual field.

From the helmet which was introduced decades ago to save the players from head injuries, to these new technologies, NFL has always harnessed technology to improve the game.