Jan 21 2015

Technology Helps NFL Teams Anticipate Athletic Injuries with Stats and Tracking

Thanks to RFID technology and data analytics, professional football teams can keep a closer eye on the health and performances of their players.

It almost sounds like something from the late 1980s movie “Robocop,” but it’s actually true. All NFL players will be walking around with chips on their jerseys that track and report on their health, performance and physical fitness.

The good news is that these chips aren’t embedded painfully into the skin, like we’ve seen in some dystopian Hollywood films, like “The Matrix.” Instead, these RFID chips are in the players' jersey sleeves. And the amount of data and insights generated from this chip have proved so impressive that the league is adopting them across the board next season.

“The NFL, leaguewide, starting next year, is going to implement it across all the teams that we wear these GPS things on our back that can track performance during the week. They can help determine fatigue. They can help training staff kind of predict if a guy is getting too fatigued, if he's going to possibly be prone to getting injured,” Carolina Panthers player Ryan Kalil said in a video produced by CDW and Sporting News.

The goal of the technology is to identify and mitigate injuries before they happen. That’s why teams like the Indianapolis Colts are excited about using the new technology.

“We can see if this player is close to having a soft tissue injury,” said Ryan Fannin, director of information systems for the Indianapolis Colts. “We can measure how far a player has traveled and how fast and the force of a hit, and things like that.”

To learn more about player analytics and performance tracking, watch the CDW video below:

Colts/Sporting News