Tacleando la NFL: Conference Championships
Por Daniel “Mr. Clutch” Mercado Castro
Aunque no pegué un Super Bowl entre Packers y Patriots, sin duda ese Super Bowl LI estará más que interesante entre dos QB que buscan reivindicarse. Por Atlanta está Matt Ryan, quien no tan solo busca darle el primer campeonato en la historia de los Falcons, si no que busca ganarle por primera vez a los Patriots mientras que Brady quiere dejar atrás el drama de las bolas desinfladas y simplemente ganar fuera de duda razonable el campeonato máximo. Ambos QB son merecedores del MVP de la temporada regular y en la postemporada también se han crecido, llevando a sus franquicias al Super Bowl el 5 de febrero en el NRG Stadium en Houston, Texas. Será un duelo de QB, pero al igual de recibidores entre Julio Jones vs Chris Hogan y corredores entre Devonta Freeman vs LeGarrette Blount. La ofensiva está bastante pareja entre ambos, tal vez Atlanta tiene más a su favor con Tevin Coleman. La defensa será la diferencia del duelo. New England debe dominar ese aspecto y dando el puntillazo con las efectivas patadas de Stephen Gostkowski. El juego será uno cerrado y me voy con los Patriots ganando el mismo 30-24. Brady se reivindica con el MVP del Super Bowl 51. ¿La pegaré?
Matt Ryan lanzó 4 TD y corrió para uno adicional en la paliza 44-21 sobre Green Bay para ganar el campeonato del NFC. Atlanta ganó la primera mitad 24-0 gracias a dos TD lanzados de Ryan y el que realizó rushing, su primero desde el 2012. Ryan lanzó 38-27 para un total de 392 yardas. Julio Jones atrapó 9 balones para 180 yardas con dos TD, incluyendo uno de 73 yardas para abrir el 3er parcial. La ventaja de los Falcons llegó a estar 31-0. Tevin Coleman aportó un rush TD mientras que Devonta Freeman y Mohamed Sanu aportaron un TD recibido cada uno. Aaron Rodgers lució en la derrota con 3 TD lanzados (Jared Cook, Jordy Nelson y Davante Adams). Pero Rodgers no fue suficiente para continuar la racha de 8 victorias seguidas y hasta Mason Crosby falló una patada. Es el 2do pase al Super Bowl para Atlanta en sus 51 años de historia, el ultimo fue hace 18 años (1999) donde cayeron ante John Elways en su despedida de la NFL. Atlanta dominó a los Packers 493-367 en total de yardas.
Y en su 6to juego consecutivo de campeonato en la AFC los Patriots dominan 36-17 a los Steelers. Tom Brady está a una victoria de su redención y otro campeonato para su resumé. Brady lanzó 42-32 para 384 yardas con tres TD. Marcas franquicia de paso en la postemporada. Chris Hogan atrapó 9 pelotas para 180 yardas y dos TD. Julian Edelman lo secundó con 8 atrapadas, 118 yardas y un TD recibido. LeGarrette Blount aportó un rush TD al triunfo mientras que Stephen Gostkowski se fue de 3-3 en field goals. Los Patriots ganaron 10-0 el primer periodo y 17-9 la primera mitad; pero fue un tercer parcial de 16-0 lo que puso la victoria en caja de seguridad. Ben Roethlisberger apareció en el 4to parcial para completar su único TD lanzado del juego. Los Steelers fueron desarmados por los Patriots. Los Patriots han ganado 9 juegos consecutivos y van a su 9no Super Bowl como los favoritos para ganar. New England tiene marca de 4-4 en los Super Bowl, ganándolos en el 2002, 2004, 2005 y 2015. La dupleta Brady y Bill Belichik buscan su 5to titulo en su 7ma aparición en un Super Bowl. Las dos veces que han vencido a los Steelers para pasar al Super Bowl (2002 y 2005) terminaron como campeones.
NFL ANNOUNCES STANDING-ROOM-ONLY TICKETS ARE SOLD-OUT FOR
2017 PRO BOWL PRESENTED BY AQUAFINA
The NFL today announced a sellout of all standing-room-only tickets for the 2017 PRO BOWL PRESENTED BY AQUAFINA on Sunday, January 29 at Camping World Stadium in Orlando. Standing-room-only tickets were made available to accommodate additional fans for the sold-out game, which airs tomorrow on ESPN and ESPN Deportes at 8:00 PM ET.
Only fans with tickets to the 2017 Pro Bowl should plan to attend. There will be no day-of-game sales and no opportunity to purchase tickets at the stadium box office.
In addition, parking availability onsite and near Camping World Stadium is sold-out. Fans may take advantage of many convenient transportation options, which are detailed at CampingWorldStadium.com.
The NFL and the City of Orlando are donating all proceeds from the sale of standing-room-only tickets to Special Olympics Florida to help provide opportunities to athletes of all abilities.
NFL ANNOUNCES SALE OF STANDING-ROOM-ONLY TICKETS FOR SOLD-OUT 2017 PRO BOWL PRESENTED BY AQUAFINA
A limited number of standing-room-only tickets are being made available for the sold-out 2017 PRO BOWL PRESENTED BY AQUAFINA on Sunday, January 29 at Camping World Stadium in Orlando, the NFL announced today. The addition of standing-room-only tickets is due to fan demand for the game, which airs on ESPN and ESPN Deportes at 8:00 PM ET.
each at NFL.com/ProBowlOnSale.
The NFL and the City of Orlando will donate all proceeds to Special Olympics Florida, which complements the league's recently announced partnership to expand Special Olympics Unified Flag Football programs to provide opportunities to athletes of all abilities.
Parking availability onsite and near Camping World Stadium for the game is also sold out. Fans are encouraged to take advantage of the many convenient transportation options to arrive at the stadium, which are detailed at CampingWorldStadium.com.
Throughout PRO BOWL WEEK – a week-long celebration to unite and inspire the entire football community – thousands of fans have already participated in free festivities, including access to AFC and NFC team practices, interactive games and activities, and an unprecedented number of youth and high school football events.
This year’s re-imagined Pro Bowl returns to the traditional AFC versus NFC matchup. Fans are encouraged to join the conversation on social media by using the hashtag #ProBowl.
|Ensure Super Bowl LI Tickets Are Authentic, Purchase Verified Tickets From Ticketmaster And The NFL Ticket Exchange|
ENSURE SUPER BOWL LI TICKETS ARE AUTHENTIC, PURCHASE 100% VERIFIED TICKETS FROM TICKETMASTER AND THE NFL TICKET EXCHANGE
– The NFL and Ticketmaster Encourage All Fans Shopping for Super Bowl LI Tickets to Purchase only from Reputable Sources, Including Ticketmaster and the NFL Ticket Exchange, the Official Ticket Exchange of the NFL
– Ticketmaster Offers Fans the Ability to Select and Purchase Specific Seats for Super Bowl LI in a Secure Online and Onsite Resale Marketplace
– Ticketmaster Has Also Teamed Up with On Location Experiences to Provide Premium, Personalized Super Bowl LI Experience Packages
February. With tickets available now on the NFL Ticket Exchange (NFLTE) powered by Ticketmaster, fans can select and purchase tickets to specific seat locations for Super Bowl LI that are 100% verified and guaranteed to be authentic.
As the official ticket exchange of the NFL, Ticketmaster is in possession of every Super Bowl LI ticket listed and sold on the NFL Ticket Exchange, providing fans with the unrivaled benefit of enjoying the safety and convenience of verified tickets. Fans can access the NFL Ticket Exchange online at NFLTicketExchange.com or by calling (888) 635-5944.
Also for the first time ever, Ticketmaster has teamed up with On Location Experiences ("OLE") to provide exclusive offerings for content-rich, personalized experiences as well as unparalleled access to exclusive game day, pre and post-game parties, savory cuisine, top amenities, first-rate entertainment and musical talent over the course of Super Bowl LI weekend, expanding beyond game day. Through OLE, fans are invited to enjoy benefits ranging from expedited entry into the Stadium on game day, access to the on-field celebration following the Championship Trophy presentation and appearances by NFL legends. Packages are currently available for purchase on OLE's online platform superbowl.nflonlocation.com.
From February 2-5, fans shopping for Ticketmaster Verified Super Bowl LI tickets in the Houston Area can also visit the NFL Ticket Exchange location inside the Hilton Americas hotel in Houston. On game day, fans who make arrangements in advance will be able to pick up their Super Bowl LI tickets anytime until kickoff at the designated Ticketmaster Will Call location outside Super Bowl Stadium.
Super Bowl LI is scheduled to take place on February 5, 2017 at NRG Stadium in Houston, TX.
RENEE ELISE GOLDSBERRY, JASMINE CEPHAS JONES & PHILLIPA SOO TO SING “AMERICA THE BEAUTIFUL” AT SUPER BOWL LI ON FOX
RENEE ELISE GOLDSBERRY, JASMINE CEPHAS JONES and PHILLIPA SOO, original cast members of the Tony Award-winning Broadway hit “Hamilton: An American Musical,” will sing “America The Beautiful” as part of Super Bowl LI pregame festivities at NRG Stadium on Sunday, February 5, the NFL and FOX announced today. The performance will be televised live on FOX prior to kickoff.
The Super Bowl is annually the most-watched television program. The appearance will be the first time the trio, who starred as “The Schuyler Sisters,” will perform on the Super Bowl stage.
Goldsberry, Jones and Soo join VICKI CARR (Super Bowl XI), RAY CHARLES (Super Bowl XXXV), MARY J. BLIGE & MARC ANTHONY (Super Bowl XXXVI), ALICIA KEYS (Super Bowl XXXIX), FAITH HILL (Super Bowl XLIII), QUEEN LATIFAH (Super Bowl XLIV & XLVIII), LEA MICHELE (Super Bowl XLVI) in singing “America The Beautiful” at Super Bowl. In 2013, JENNIFER HUDSON along with 26 children from the Newton, CT community sang the song in advance of Super Bowl XLVII.
The NFL previously announced that LUKE BRYAN will perform the National Anthem, KRISTON LEE PUMPHREY will perform in American Sign Language the National Anthem and “America The Beautiful” and LADY GAGA will headline the Pepsi Zero Sugar Super Bowl LI Halftime Show. The pregame and halftime shows are an NFL NETWORK PRODUCTION and will be executive produced by RICKY KIRSHNER.
Transcript of 2016 Injury Data Results Media Conference Call
January 26, 2017
The NFL released its most recent injury data on January 26, 2017. The injury data is compiled and analyzed by QuintilesIMS, an independent third-party company retained by the NFL.
The following is a transcript of a media conference call with reporters to discuss the data.
Media Conference Call
With Jeff Miller, Dr. John York, Dr. Christina Mack, Dr. Robert Heyer and Dr. Mitchell Berger.
January 26, 2017
THE MODERATOR: We'll begin today with the NFL’s executive vice president of health and safety policy, Jeff Miller.
JEFF MILLER: Good morning, everyone. Appreciate NFL's health and safety initiatives including our injury surveillance. We have done a call like this or meeting like this regularly or annually where we've discussed the injury data as compiled in the NFLPA's epidemiology firm, QuintilesIMS. So we'll get to that data in a minute.
I'm going to introduce today's speakers and make a few brief opening comments. With us today on the phone, Dr. John York. He is the Co‑Chairman of the San Francisco 49ers, the Chairman of the NFL Owners' Health and Safety Advisory Committee. Dr. Christina Mack, she is the Director of Epidemiology and Outcomes Research Real World Insights at QuintilesIMS.
QuintilesIMS is a Fortune 500 company and a leading global health care provider of integration technology enabled services. QuintilesIMS has led the NFL's surveillance and analytics program since 2011. Following Dr. Mack, is Dr. Robert Heyer. He is the President of the NFL's Physicians Society, Team Internist for the Carolina Panthers. Lastly, but not least, Dr. Mitch Berger, Professor and Chairman, Department of Neurological Surgery at UCSF, and a member of the NFL's Head, Neck and Spine Committee. Each one of those folks will have an opportunity to provide opening comments after I'm done and answer your questions.
So let me start with a little bit of background. It's been an active year on health and safety initiatives of the NFL. We continue a very strong partnership with the NFL Players Association on a number of different fronts.
We, as background in terms of issues that we have looked at on the field, again, reminders that we have unaffiliated doctors on the sidelines, unaffiliated neurotrauma consultants which are assisting team doctors in identifying and evaluating players for concussion.
This year we saw even greater integration with the team medical staffs than we have before, and added responsibilities for the UNC this year to include evaluating players for potential stingers. I'm sure Dr. Heyer can go into that as well. This year, we added to the athletic trainers in the media box. Those who are there to help identify injuries, call down the team medical staff and send video to help them identify injuries and diagnose injuries, all injuries.
We added a second athletic trainer to the media box this year, to assist their work and help them identify potentially more injuries. And as you know, last year for the first time, we allowed and empowered that athletic trainer to call, what we termed a medical timeout. The first of its kind, we believe, in international sports where an independent medical observer could stop the game for the benefit of player health.
Last year, in the first year, we saw five of those calls. This year we saw eight. And those athletic trainers continue to advance players' health and safety.
We also added this year, this was a change from previous years, an enforcement mechanism for the concussion protocol. Again, we've worked on this closely with the Players Association, ways to emphasize the need for the concussion protocol to be followed in a detailed manner, along the lines that the medical observers, the Players Association medical director, and others have advised us it needs to be followed.
Finally, in addition this year on the field and in an educational way, the Players Association with our collaboration put out a very good video for players on how the concussion protocol works on signs and symptoms of concussion. If you haven't seen it, I would commend it to you. It was very well done, and advances player education even beyond the work that the team doctors and the NFL have done with their individual teams to try to elevate the education level of players as it relates to concussions.
Off the field, it's also been a very busy year in terms of research. The NFL announced the Play Smart. Play Safe. campaign just a few months ago, which was Dr. York and his fellow owners' commitment of $100 million of additional research beyond an additional $100 million research portfolio with partners that we had.
This hundred million of research is going to two primary areas, the first is what we call the Engineering Roadmap, which is a focused effort on advancing protective equipment through biomechanical engineering analysis and analytics. We are a few months into that program, and we are working closely with the Players Association, biomechanical engineers as well who are consulting on this project. We have high hopes that this will lead to the advance in protective equipment over the next five years. The additional $40 million will be spent on more scientific research advised by a Scientific Advisory Board working with our medical committees to identify priority areas for medical research. And we should be in a place over the next several months to announce some of those areas that we're going to be looking to provide grants and mechanisms by which people can apply for the money.
Much of this, as many of you know, is conducted at the Combine coming up in a few weeks, where our team physicians, team athletic trainers, medical advisors, Players Association representatives, and others get together to talk about how the protocols work. How the communication systems are working. Whether we can do more to educate, work with the Competition Committee on potential rules changes, and analyze a lot of the statistical data that Dr. Mack and QuintilesIMS compiles for us. So we are looking forward to that and looking for ways to get better at what we do.
So let me give you a quick top line on injury data and I'll turn this over to Dr. York. We saw concussions this year in the NFL in regular season games decrease from 183 in‑games to 167. That is a decrease of 8.7%. Overall concussions, if you combine preseason practices and games and regular season practices and games, we saw that number decrease from 275 in 2015 to 244 in 2016, which is approximately 11.3%. That number 244 is aligned with about a five‑year average, so those numbers are relatively consistent in that regard.
Dr. Mack will go into more detail on that as well as some of the major other injury areas like ACL injuries, MCL injuries, injuries on Thursday night games and on the kickoff, which has been discussed since the kickoff rule was changed this year with the kickoff, the return line being moved ahead to the 25‑yard line. We saw a decrease ‑‑ I'm sorry, an increase in touchbacks of about 2%, a decrease in returns by about 2%, and Dr. Mack will talk about the injury statistics related to that.
Importantly, that's just one year's worth of data. We'll look at this over time, and that will be shared with the Competition Committee at the Combine, and we'll have further discussion about that rule and the injury implications for it.
Likewise, our injury data, as Dr. Mack will mention, has been looked at in any number of areas. This is preliminary, top‑line data, we'll have much more sophisticated information in the next few weeks as QuintilesIMS continues to look at it, and we look further to that. That's a top‑line overview, and I'll turn this over to Dr. York if he has any opening remarks.
DR. JOHN YORK: I will add that the 32 clubs, their owners and the commissioner maintain that player health and safety is a number one priority for the National Football League, and the Owners’ Health and Safety Advisory Committee is set up purely for that reason. That committee works with the Players Association, with QuintilesIMS in terms of injury surveillance data, the club physicians and athletic trainers and the Competition Committee in order to look at data and propose rule changes that will be for the betterment of the players in terms of health and safety.
I will bring your attention again to the area of preseason practices, which we looked at last year. We were concerned about the number of preseason practice concussions compared to the regular season. The regular season has almost no concussions during practice, less than ten. And there were almost, over 40 in preseason practices up until last year.
We went and discussed with the individual clubs the number of preseason concussions, and those discussions led to a significant decrease, over 30%, between 2014 and 2015, and that number has stabilized in 2016, actually, with the decrease of three. So we're happy those results shows that the clubs do listen and are very interested in the number of concussions in their players, and that we can have an effect on the culture of the National Football League.
We've also seen an increased number of self‑reported concussions this year over last year, with last year being the first year that we really saw a significant number of self‑reported concussions. So those are all good changes with regards to the concussion protocol, and I would also say that they have an effect that may cause an increase in the number of concussions that we identify. Probably those that are in less‑severe type of concussion, but we want to know every one of the concussions and identify those and take care of the players properly.
JEFF MILLER: We'll turn it over to QuintilesIMS Director Epidemiology and Outcomes Research Real World Insights.
DR. CHRISTINA MACK: Thank you, as Jeff said, I'm an epidemiologist, I lead the QuintilesIMS injury surveillance and analytics program along with Dr. Nancy Dreyer. Overall this year we observed an 11% decrease in concussions compared to 2015. Though we're still seeing numbers higher than 2013 and 2014, and it's still a point of emphasis. It's important to look at the concussion numbers by pre‑ and regular season to understand the trends, because as Dr. York described, they are different.
We saw a decrease in preseason concussions overall this year in both practices and in games. And, again, it's important to distinguish between the two, because we focused heavily on training camp and preseason practices, and we've continued to make progress in that area. The decrease that we saw in 2015, based on the discussions that the League and the Health and Safety Committees had with the individual clubs was sustained this year, and preseason practice concussion reached a five‑year low at 26 concussions over the preseason practices.
So that amounts to concussions in preseason practices being down 32% from the four‑year average of 38. In preseason games, concussions decreased 17% this year compared to 2015, with numbers looking closer to prior years.
Switching to regular season, we again saw a decrease of 8.7% going from 167 this season compared to 183 last year. Although, again, higher than the experience in 2013 and 2014.
We also understand that the medical staff are even more observant than they previously were. When we looked at data on the activity of the ATC spotters and the unaffiliated neurotrauma consultants, we saw a conservative approach to evaluating players. For example, the ATC spotters are calling down to the medical staff on the field more frequently, and they're calling down conservatively. Almost 70% of the players called down by an ATC are cleared to return‑to‑play after examination, and a similarly high percent of players evaluated by the UNCs are not ultimately diagnosed with a concussion, but they're evaluated through the concussion protocol.
So in fact over two‑thirds of the players put through the concussion protocol aren't ultimately found to have a concussion.
Jeff Miller discussed that the league and the advisors are continuously improving on these programs, so they added a second ATC, they expanded the scope of the UNC program to evaluate stingers, so that is what we're seeing in the data with this conservative approach.
Switching to knee injuries. ACL tears were stable this year at 56 over the entire season. There were slightly fewer than in 2015, and overall these have been stable over the past five years with some variation between seasons as expected.
There were fewer MCL tears this year than last year, but more than what we with saw in 2012 and 2013. These injuries have more variability in reporting because of the range of severity of the injuries, higher than ACLs and concussions. We have not seen any increase at all in full MCL tears, which is the most severe.
We continue to monitor Thursday night games and duration of play, and once again, we found there is no evidence of an increase in injuries when teams participate in a Thursday night game or examined another way—injury rates do not increase when teams have shorter intervals between games.
The change in the rules did reduce kickoff returns this year by about 4%. And the data on kickoff returns show a two‑year decrease in hamstring strains, and general stability on the number of concussions on this play, although there was a low in 2014.
JEFF MILLER: Thank you, Christina. We'll now go to Dr. Rob Heyer, the head of the NFL Physicians Society. Dr. Heyer?
DR. JEFF HEYER: Thank you, Jeff. I've been a team physician for 23 years, and during the past three years I think I've seen a cultural change concerning concussions. At the beginning of the last two seasons, as Dr. York mentioned, the head athletic trainer and team physicians of each team formally address their players, coaches and general managers in a one of had hour meeting regarding concussions. The signs, symptoms and taking them seriously.
As mentioned, the players are now more aware of the symptoms of concussions and are concerned for their health. They understand the need for an evaluation by the team physician and the UNC if a possible concussion has occurred.
As a result of this ongoing education, players are more likely to speak up if they believe they have a concussion. And this awareness has led to more self‑reporting of symptoms by players and then an appropriate medical evaluation by the team physician and UNC.
Our work with the league regarding concussions and education is not done, but I know what we are doing is currently making a difference, and we will and must continue to do more.
JEFF MILLER: Thank you, there Heyer. Rob, I appreciate it. Now we'll go to Dr. Mitch Berger, member of the Head, Neck and Spine Committee. Mitch, if you have any opening comments?
DR. MITCH BERGER: Yeah, Jeff, thanks very much. Just a few comments, so by way of background, I'm a neurosurgeon, I've been practicing for over 30 years. I've seen lots of folks routinely with concussions. I've also been a member of the Head, Neck and Spine Committee since 2009. And over the past three years I've served as an unaffiliated neurotrauma consultant, so I'm down on the sidelines and have a very good understanding of how the protocol works and how it's activated, et cetera.
And I must say, when I saw these numbers I was really relieved. I was encouraged that the numbers are down, but I'm still far from satisfied. As a health care provider, I think one of our absolute highest priorities is to get these numbers further down. We're going to have to really think about the ways in which we can do this. I think as Jeff just said, that's what the combine is about. We've got to drill down into the Quintiles numbers and work with the medical community to find out how we can decrease the numbers. So I am encouraged, but still far from satisfied, and we certainly have a lot more work to do as part of our committee. So I'll end it there, Jeff.
JEFF MILLER: Great, Mitch, appreciate it.
REPORTER'S QUESTION: I have two questions about concussions. The first question is obviously like was mentioned, the concussions are down in all three categories, preseason and regular season together from 2015. And I'm wondering if the sample of the one year, is that something that you consider statistically significant at this point?
JEFF MILLER: I'll take the first answer at it, and if Dr. Mack wants to weigh in. It's certainly positive that concussions were down this year across categories. But I think putting too much focus on any one year would be mistaken. The goal here is to drive those numbers down through rules changes, culture changes, protocol changes, through greater observation and treatment over a longer term period of time.
So I think Dr. Berger said it well, we're heartened by a decrease, but that doesn't change anybody's efforts over the long‑term here in terms of making this game safer for those who play it. Dr. Mack, from a statistical perspective, do you want to weigh in on that?
DR. CHRISTINA MACK: Sure, so to your point, one year is not or never statistically significant, so we look at these trends holistically. It's certainly in a positive direction, but that said, there is still a lot of emphasis, concussions remain a serious concern. What we do when we see the numbers looking like this, as epidemiologists, we drill much farther into the data to try to understand what the drivers might be, where we might be able to make more impact in reducing these numbers. The example that Dr. York gave with the preseason concussions being one of those.
So the goal for us is to try to slice them enough to understand how we can continue to bring those numbers down.
REPORTER'S QUESTION: Then in a very sort of related question, when you look at like the largest samples, so you look at all five years, preseason, regular season, 2016 was still exactly basically average in terms of the total number of concussions. So I guess what I'm wondering is do you feel there is progress in terms of overall concussion prevention over the five years if we're still at basically the same total level?
JEFF MILLER: Yeah, again, maybe I'll take the first shot at this, and then if Dr. Mack wants to weigh in or others, I'll open it up to you as well. I think the numbers are the numbers. But I think what we have to account for too are the additional protocols and people involved in identifying the injuries, which are all significant net positives, whether it be multiple athletic trainers in the media box with the ability to call down to the team doctors and athletic trainers on the sideline, or in a more extreme case, call a timeout themselves or the addition of unaffiliated doctors on the sideline to identify the concussions and treat them. Or the raised awareness and education levels of everybody participating from the team officials, to the coaches, to the team doctors, to the players themselves, to either identify the signs and symptoms of an injury, point to a teammate who they think needs to be evaluated and such.
We've seen a significant culture change, I would argue, on those points. So while the numbers are what the numbers are, the ability to identify more of the injuries and treat players appropriately are all very positive trends in the right direction.
I don't know if Dr. Mack wants to take an opportunity after that or if others want to. Dr. Heyer, you may have a perspective here.
DR. ROBERT HEYER: I agree with what you said, Jeff. I think I would make two points. Number one, the self‑reporting of concussions by players is important in terms of their ultimate recovery. If a player spends an extra quarter or even a game on the field with a concussion, it lengthens the amount of time required for them to return to their normal baseline state. So that's an important fact.
The other issue is the players trusting that they're being cared for. We still have a few players that will not report. But I think we are identifying injuries that may not have been identified in previous years because of the self‑reporting by the players.
JEFF MILLER: Dr. Mack, how does the changes and the way we observe concussions and identify them factor into your analysis?
DR. CHRISTINA MACK: Sure, when you look over the past five years, the total number this year is almost equal to the total number in five years. But we do take into attention as Dr. Heyer described vastly higher attention to detection. And since 2012, the QuintilesIMS team has also changed the reporting program, and there is also vastly high era tension to reporting, and that's through consistent and constant interactions with the athletic trainers on the team. Making sure we see all of these, combing through the media on our end. Making sure if there is something in the media, we have it in our database. If not, we follow up to understand what that might be.
So the attention that we're paying to making sure that we get all the concussions in the database has increased drastically over these five years.
JEFF MILLER: I was just going to say, one sort of overlying theme here is the point of all of this, and the reason we work so closely and the Players Association works so closely with QuintilesIMS and the team physicians and others, is the efforts to identify the concussions where they happen so the players can get the treatment that they need as quickly as possible and as comprehensively as possible. That's why we spend so much time on these protocols, on the enforcement of the protocols, on the epidemiology, and working with all these many experts like Dr. Berger and others who advise us about the way we can improve.
The goal at the end of the day is to improve player health. So if we can identify more of these injuries, those players are going to be better off.
DR. MITCH BERGER: I just want to comment on what Rob said. It's very interesting to me as a physician on the sidelines in an independent way. When we started the UNC program, there was just a significant amount of resistance from the players in terms of just being evaluated. A lot of times we would say we thought we saw a pretty big hit, and we looked at it on the injury surveillance video system and agreed and we wanted to evaluate the players. A number of them were resistant in the beginning. But now I would say uniformly this past season, none of the players ever resisted. Whether I was on the home side or the visiting side, they are much, much more aware of the whole concussion situation, and want to actively be engaged in the interview process on the sidelines as well as in the locker room.
So I agree with Rob that there has to be a huge change in culture that's occurred in the past three years. They really are much more aware of and interested in their safety than they ever were.
REPORTER'S QUESTION: This is for anybody, I guess, Jeff. I'm most intrigued by the self‑reporting data. Can you release the data of how players have indeed self‑reported concussions and what percentage of those ended up being concussions, whether it was almost 100%? Because I think that maybe is responsible for maybe the rise last year in concussions if it's true that so many more players are self‑reporting. It would be nice to see those numbers alone. And the second question, do you keep track of the ligament tears on the various types of turf, whether it's grass or what type of artificial turf to see if there's any change in that direction.
JEFF MILLER: Thank you for the question. And I'm going to send this over to Dr. Mack who can give you the details, but let me give a quick statement on this.
Hopefully, I mentioned at the outset of the call, this is top‑line data that we're comfortable sharing because we're comfortable that it's accurate. There is a lot more investigation and analytics that need to go into the depth of what these numbers mean and answering some of the questions that you posed.
Knee ligaments on turf are things we take a look at, but we don't have that information in front of us today. This is a busy time for QuintilesIMS and Doctors Mack and Dreyer as they go through this data as we run up to our combine, when the many medical committees and Physicians' Society meet at the end of February and beginning of March. So we will have that sort of data.
We will be able to take a closer look at self‑reporting, which is the other one that you mentioned, and try to quantify it. We are working hard at those things right now, but we don't have numbers, I don't think. Christina, correct me if I'm wrong, but I don't think we have numbers in either of those categories right now that are sufficiently well‑analyzed and scrubbed. But we will. It's just going to take a little longer in regards to those details than others.
Dr. Mack, is that a correct statement?
DR. CHRISTINA MACK: Sure, I would add the progression of a player from the hit through the evaluation, diagnosis, and the concussion protocol is very complex, there are a lot of points of contact. So that is extra hard to quantify over some of the injury data, so we don't have that at hand at this point so close to the end of the season.
QUESTION: From previous seasons?
DR. CHRISTINA MACK: We don't have that from previous seasons, and the reason is, again, the complexity of quantifying that as the player goes from hits through the game, through their evaluation of multiple medical staff and into the next week, whether or not they have self‑reported can happen at any of those points.
So the reporting, where we'd be able to generate quality data and understand the numbers around that has changed a lot. And this is one of the strongest years of that reporting, so we need to take some time to look at that.
REPORTER'S QUESTION: What are the working theories that explain why the numbers for '13 and '14 were so different than especially last year, but then the past couple years? And I'll ask my follow‑up after.
JEFF MILLER: I think we discussed last year to some degree, and I think to the extent we had data on this point that was supported, at least based on the reactions of the team physicians, so Rob is probably a good person to speak to this.
We saw in 2015 significant more numbers of players self‑reporting, and we saw the athletic trainers in the media box, and we saw the medical timeout being used for the first time, and we saw a greater integration of the unaffiliated neurotrauma consultant with the team physician. And on that last point, we saw nearly, I think, it was double the number of screenings by unaffiliated doctors on the sideline of players.
So if they were acting more conservatively around screening players, that would be a good thing, and as a result of screen screening more players they identified things from our perspective. Similarly, if players are self‑reporting more. And it's harder to get the arms around the numbers, we'll do a better job this year than we have in the past. But those would also lead to that increase.
I think the numbers support that to the extent those numbers are analyzable, and I think that the experiences of people like Dr. Berger as an unaffiliated doctor, and Dr. Heyer as a team physician would support those notions.
Rob, do you have anything to add to that?
DR. ROBERT HEYER: Yes, I think the term self‑reporting needs to be clarified a little bit. It's a broad term, and it occurs in many different manners. Number one, another player may notice that a teammate not acting right or took a significant hit to the head, and has been a little slow in the huddle or maybe making mistakes. We would consider that self‑reporting. Someone other than the team physician or the athletic trainers or the spotters are reporting a potential injury.
The other area that I've seen is players coming in after the game, either the day of the game or even the next day saying, "I don't feel well. I'm not sure what's going on. I was hit in the head in the fourth quarter. I didn't think anything about it." And that's the type of self‑reporting that we used to rarely see in players during previous years.
REPORTER'S QUESTION: Thank you. My second question maybe doesn't speak directly to the report, but we saw the release yesterday about Matt Moore. For Jeff or Dr. York, are we satisfied that in most of these cases that protocol is being followed?
JEFF MILLER: I can't put a specific number on it, Christina can probably do a little better or Dr. Mack can probably do better than I can in that regard. But there are hundreds of unaffiliated neurotrauma consultant reports identifying players that they've evaluated during the course of the game. I'm not comfortable knowing exactly what that number is, so I won't try to guess at it. But in the hundreds, I think, is accurate. And the UNCs and the team doctors do a terrific job in working together in analyzing these issues.
It's important we get it right a hundred percent of the time, so that's why you see enforcement mechanisms like this where we work jointly with the Players Association to identify those issues.
It's important to us that everybody understands and follows the protocol, and we continue to enforce its importance and I don't think that will ever change. Dr. Berger and his colleagues at the Head, Neck and Spine Committee spend endless hours working on the protocol with the Physicians Society and the Players Association to improve it on an annual basis to get it right. And we'll spend more time educating team doctors, unaffiliated doctors, athletic trainers and others on whatever changes are made and improvements to make sure that they are working as well together for the betterment of the players.
But it's important to say, too, that we are quite pleased with how these programs are working, and this enforcement protocol is important to make sure that everybody stays aligned with the work that's being done, and the education level remains high around these issues. But overall, this is a terrific program and one that we're very pleased with.
REPORTER'S QUESTION: I wondered on the kickoff returns, the numbers for concussion did not really change a lot. Does that indicate that this will change or hasn't had a big difference or is it just too early to judge?
JEFF MILLER: I'll toss that over to Christina because I think she'd be better to answer it. My initial reaction to it is that we'll share this information with the competition committee and analyze this closely. It is, as you mentioned, one year of data. We saw the number of kickoff returns decrease, and we saw the number of concussions decrease. But how much emphasis you put on one year versus a number of years is something that we would defer to the experts on.
DR. CHRISTINA MACK: We have seen the concussion numbers on kickoff returns stay within some kind of stable range. They've jumped around. That's an expected amount of variability over four years. So certainly this is something that we'll talk about and we'll look a lot more closely at these data, what's happening on these plays at the Combine. But for now, the top line numbers, they fluctuate what we would call a natural fluctuation.
REPORTER'S QUESTION: My paper this year tried to track and set up a database to track concussions, and we saw a fairly wide variance in kind of team by team reporting of concussions. The team I cover, the Panthers, and the one Dr. Heyer's involved with was among the most reported. But I'm wondering, is that something that's being tracked by you guys, and what steps are in place and are there any concerns about kind of underreporting of these by certain teams?
JEFF MILLER: I don't know if Dr. York is still on the line. I know he had other obligations. But he mentioned the preseason concussion numbers as an example, where we had identified that in practices as an issue where there were a disproportionate number of concussions compared to the regular season, and spent time with each individual club to talk about what their particular practices were and what their concussion numbers were, and we saw an improvement. Probably based largely on the fact that we raised it to their attention.
So we take a look at that for purposes of being able to change the culture. As far as what's done on a team‑by‑team basis or how this is tracked, I'm sure Dr. Mack can offer a little insight as far as that goes.
DR. CHRISTINA MACK: Sure, thank you. The most critical answer to this is around the culture on the teams and how they play, as Jeff described. From a reporting perspective, particularly within games, we feel confident we are getting all of the concussions. And overall, because QuintilesIMS works very closely with each of the teams throughout the full season to make sure that all of the concussions are reported and they're reported accurately. We feel confident that we're getting the concussions in equal number from the teams.
We comb the media as well, and when we see something in the media if it's not in the database, we call the club and ask about that, and find out if the media ‑‑ if it hadn't been reported, or in a lot of cases it's reported through the media, but was, in fact, not actually diagnosed as a concussion.
We also work with the clubs monthly, sending them reports with all of their injuries with focus on concussion, but with focus on all of the injuries, to emphasize complete reporting, quality reporting, and make sure all the records are in there in the way we can include them in the analyses.
The athletic trainer community, within the NFL, is very engaged in the reporting of the injuries, so we do feel confident that we're getting the concussions reported.
REPORTER'S QUESTION: Dr. Heyer referenced the players who self‑report later, either day of game or the following day. This is just a procedural thing perhaps for Dr. Mack. Where do the players who report symptoms later fall as far as classification? Does that come under game ultimately or where do those go?
DR. CHRISTINA MACK: Yeah, that’s a good question. If a player is injured in a game, that falls under a game concussion. So if the symptoms start the day after the game and that's when the diagnosis happens, that's still categorized as an in‑game concussion if the impact was from a game.
REPORTER'S QUESTION: Have there been documented cases, and if so, I'm curious as to the number of players who go through the protocol, are cleared appropriately to return‑to‑play, but later report symptoms and are subsequently diagnosed with a concussion?
JEFF MILLER: So a player who has been identified as potentially having a concussion going through the protocol on the sideline?
REPORTER'S QUESTION: Right, even the locker room evaluation. We know that there have been players who have gone to the locker room, been evaluated, cleared to return‑to‑play, have returned to play. Are there any instances of those players later developing symptoms that were subsequently led to a concussion diagnosis?
JEFF MILLER: In the days following the game or later in the game?
REPORTER: Correct, after the game or in the days following.
JEFF MILLER: I don't know the answer to that question. Dr. Heyer, have you had any experiences with that?
DR. ROBERT HEYER: I think there have been a few. I speak without exact knowledge, but that's an excellent question. Looking at the UNC data and the concussion data should be able to find out that number. It would not surprise me if there was a case here and there, because concussions sometimes, their symptoms do develop over a period of time sometimes.
JEFF MILLER: I think we'd have to do a little further digging to answer your question. So let me do that and get back to you.
REPORTER'S QUESTION: You mentioned the athletic trainers in the booth who stop the clock for player evaluation when there is suspected injury. Do you have a report on the times the referees may have stopped to the clock to have a player evaluated?
JEFF MILLER: Where an official escorted a player off the field? You can think of the Tyrod Taylor hit in the Buffalo game where I think Ed Hochuli took him off the field.
JEFF MILLER: That was a point of emphasis with the officials as well and has been for a couple of years around identifying players they perceive need some assistance. Again, that's not asking the official to diagnose anything, that's not his or her job. But to identify a player that they think needs some medical attention.
So through the Competition Committee specifically, we'll go back and look at those instances. We would deem officials looking at players and identify them as needing medical attention as a positive thing. But I don't have any numbers to offer you at this point.
NFL STATEMENT ON MOORE CONCUSSION PROTOCOL REVIEW
The NFL and NFLPA have reviewed the application of the Concussion Protocol by the Dolphins’ medical staff in the January 8th Steelers-Dolphins game.
The Miami Dolphins were notified in a letter co-signed by Dr. Hunt Batjer, Co-Chair of the NFL Head, Neck & Spine Committee and Dr. Thom Mayer, Medical Director for the NFLPA, that the NFL-NFLPA review determined that the Protocol was not strictly followed. The letter further advised the Dolphins that they must engage their staff in a full review of the Protocol and conduct additional education, if necessary. The Dolphins were also advised that any future deviation from the Protocol may result in enhanced discipline, including monetary fines assessed against the Club.
In the second quarter, Dolphins quarterback Matt Moore incurred a hit to the chin and mouth area which drew a roughing the passer penalty. Mr. Moore was attended to by medical staff on the field and on the sideline. The team doctor took appropriate steps to promptly and fully involve the Unaffiliated Neuro-trauma Consultant (UNC) in the medical evaluation of the player and review of the video. They jointly cleared Mr. Moore to return to the game, but did not recognize that Mr. Moore presented a documented symptom, bleeding from the mouth, that required further evaluation in the locker room under the protocol. There is no indication that competitive issues had an impact on the care that Mr. Moore received, nor did Mr. Moore demonstrate any concussion symptoms either during or at any time following the game.
It is important for us to ensure everyone understands and follows the Protocol and that we continue to reinforce its importance. The co-chairmen of the NFL’s Head, Neck and Spine Committee sent a memo to the medical staffs of the clubs participating in the playoffs reminding them of that point.
The objective of the Concussion Protocol is to ensure a standardized process composed of best practices is used to identify and manage potential concussions. Concussion diagnosis and management is often a difficult and complex exercise, compounded by hectic game conditions. Accurate diagnosis and management of concussion requires a collaborative approach among experienced physicians on the sideline, each acutely aware of his or her responsibilities and all committed to the strict application of the protocol designed to protect players.
SUPER BOWL LI OFFICIALS NAMED
Referee CARL CHEFFERS will lead the seven-person crew of game officials selected to work Super Bowl LI on Sunday, February 5 at NRG Stadium, the NFL announced today.
The other members of the Super Bowl LI officiating crew are DAN FERRELL (umpire), KENT PAYNE (head linesman), JEFF SEEMAN (line judge), DOUG ROSENBAUM (field judge), DYROL PRIOLEAU (side judge), and TODD PRUKOP (back judge). Collectively, the Super Bowl LI officiating crew has 93 years of NFL officiating experience and 64 combined playoff game assignments.
Cheffers, in his 17th season as an NFL game official, entered the league in 2000 as a side judge and was promoted to referee in 2008. He has officiated 10 playoff games, including two conference championships. He was the alternate referee for Super Bowl XLIX and an alternate official for Super Bowl XLII.
Under the NFL officiating program's evaluation system, officials must be rated in the top tier at their position to be eligible for the Super Bowl. They must have at least five years of NFL experience and previous playoff assignments.
TOM SIFFERMAN is the replay official.
Cheffers, Ferrell, Prioleau, and Prukop are officiating in their first Super Bowl. Payne and Rosenbaum worked Super Bowl XLV and Seeman officiated Super Bowl XLIV.
SUPER BOWL LI OFFICIATING CREW
OLIVIA HOLT AND GINA MARIE INCANDELA
TO PERFORM DURING 2017 NFL PRO BOWL WEEK
Hollywood Records artist and actress OLIVIA HOLT will perform the National Anthem at the 2017 PRO BOWL PRESENTED BY AQUAFINAL on Sunday, January 29, and 15-year-old Central Florida native and singer GINA MARIE INCANDELA will perform the National Anthem at the PRO BOWL SKILLS SHOWDOWN on Thursday, January 26, the NFL announced today.
Holt’s debut EP, entitled “OLIVIA,” landed #19 on Billboard’s New Artist Chart and #34 on Billboard’s Pop Chart. Her music has resonated with fans across the country, garnering more than 50 million views online while her current single “History” has more than 10 million streams on Spotify. Holt will kick off Pro Bowl pregame show festivities by singing the National Anthem at Camping World Stadium in Orlando on Sunday, January 29, with coverage beginning at 6:00 PM ET on ESPN.
Incandela, who was diagnosed with a form of autism at an early age, has received global acclaim for her inspiring performances. She uses her voice to encourage others to pursue their dreams regardless of their challenges, and has received numerous awards for her community service. The Pro Bowl Skills Showdown, which will feature Incandela, airs on Thursday, January 26 at 7:00 PM ET on ESPN.
This year’s re-imagined Pro Bowl returns to the traditional AFC versus NFC matchup, and the NFL is hosting a week-long celebration leading up to the game to commemorate the brightest stars of today and tomorrow.
Events during PRO BOWL WEEK include free access to AFC and NFC team practices; NFL PLAY 60 activities; a 5K run at Epcot, a parade of players in the Magic Kingdom; and a series of community events with local non-profit organizations and military personnel.
In addition, the NFL FLAG Championships will take place at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, including the Boys’ 13- to 14-year-old Championship Game, which will be held on Sunday at Camping World Stadium during pregame and halftime of the Pro Bowl and air live on ESPN.
Tickets to the 2017 Pro Bowl are available at NFL.com/ProBowlOnSale, and additional information can be found at NFL.com/ProBowl. Fans are encouraged to follow and join the Pro Bowl conversation on social media by using the hashtag #ProBowl.
LOS TODO-ESTRELLA DE LA NFL SALEN A ESCENA PARA EL PRO BOWL 2017
-- El Pro Bowl arranca la semana del Super Bowl en horario central por ESPN el domingo 29 de enero --El Pro Bowl 2017, presentado por Aquafina, se celebrará el domingo 29 de enero de 2017 y televisado en vivo por ESPN y en simultáneo con ESPN Deportes a las 8:00 PM, hora de New York, desde el estadio Camping World Stadium de Orlando, Florida.
-- Los Todo-estrellas se enfrentan en el Skills Showdown que se verá el jueves 26 de enero a las 7:00 PM, hora de New York, por ESPN --
La edición de este año del Pro Bowl retorna al tradicional formato de la AFC contra la NFC luego de tres años de una estructura revisada “sin conferencia”.
El corredor miembro del Salón de la Fama JEROME BETTIS, el ala cerrada Todo-estrella TONY GONZÁLEZ, el dos veces Jugador defensivo del año de la NFL y Jugador más valioso (MVP, por sus siglas en inglés) del Super Bowl XXXV RAY LEWIS, y el ex Jugador defensivo del año de la NFL y miembro de secundaria Todo-estrella CHARLES WOODSON serán los Capitanes Leyenda del Pro Bowl 2017.
Bettis (ofensiva) y Lewis (defensiva) encabezarán la AFC, mientras que González (ofensiva) y Woodson (defensiva) guiarán a la NFC. Durante la semana del Pro Bowl, los cuatro Capitanes Leyenda harán las veces de mentores de los jugadores del Pro Bowl, entrenarán las prácticas, y estarán presentes en las bandas durante el partido. Las Leyendas de la NFL de ambos equipos también estarán asistidos por dos jugadores capitanes activos.
El Pro Bowl 2017 es el primero que se jugará en Orlando, y tendrá los todo-estrellas de la liga y a los Capitanes Leyenda formando parte de un número de actividades para jóvenes y de eventos para la comunidad sin precedentes durante la celebración de una semana de duración de la comunidad del fútbol americano.
También por primera vez este año, el Pro Bowl Skills Showdown, que pone a Todo-estrellas de la AFC y de la NFC uno contra otro en competiciones únicas, estará en el aire el jueves 26 de enero a las 7:00 PM, hora de New York, por ESPN. Cada equipo en el Skills Showdown tendrá una mezcla de mariscales de campo, corredores, receptores, alas cerradas, linieros, apoyadores y jugadores de secundaria.
Cada equipo del Pro Bowl, de 44 jugadores, estará compuesto por 21 jugadores ofensivos y 18 jugadores defensivos más cinco especialistas, incluyendo un sacador en largo. ANDY REID y los entrenadores de los Kansas City Chiefs encabezarán al equipo de la AFC, mientras que JASON GARRETT y los entrenadores de los Dallas Cowboys estarán al frente de la escuadra de la NFC.
Diez jugadores de los dos equipos participantes del Super Bowl LI, los ATLANTA FALCONS y los NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS, esta temporada fueron seleccionados para los planteles originales del Pro Bowl: el apoyador VIC BEASLEY JR., el pateador MATT BRYANT, el corredor DEVONTA FREEMAN, el receptor JULIO JONES, el centro ALEX MACK y el mariscal de campo MATT RYAN, de los Falcons; y el mariscal de campo TOM BRADY, el apoyador DONT’A HIGHTOWER, el profundo DEVIN MC COURTY y el jugador especialista MATTHEW SLATER, de los Patriots.
Los jugadores para el Pro Bowl fueron determinados por votos consensuados de aficionados, jugadores y entrenadores. Los votos de cada grupo correspondieron a una tercera parte del toral para determinar las 86 selecciones para el Pro Bowl. Un sacador en largo fue elegido por cada entrenador en jefe como un jugador de “necesidad”. La NFL es la única liga deportiva que combina los votos de aficionados, entrenadores y jugadores para determinar sus equipos todo-estrella. En 1995, la NFL se convirtió en la primera liga deportiva profesional de ofrecer la votación en línea para la selección de sus todo-estrella.
Bajo los términos del Acuerdo colectivo de trabajo, cada jugador del equipo ganador del Pro Bowl recibe 61,000 dólares, mientras que cada jugador de la escuadra perdedora se hace acreedor de 30,000 dólares.
Boletos para el Pro Bowl 2017 están en venta a través de NFL.com/ProBowlOnSale.
JUGADORES DEL PRO BOWL 2017 POR POSICIÓN
(*Seleccionado al Pro Bowl por primera vez)
KEEGAN-MICHAEL KEY TO HOST NFL HONORS
Annual Awards Show to Take Place at Wortham Theater Center
in Houston on Eve of Super Bowl LI
KEEGAN-MICHAEL KEY, Emmy-award winning actor, writer and creator, will take the stage as host of NFL HONORS on Saturday, Feb. 4 at the Wortham Theater Center in Houston. The two-hour primetime awards special recognizing the NFL's best players, performances and plays from the 2016 season will air nationally at 8 PM ET/PT on FOX.
Key is the co-creator and co-star of Comedy Central's "Key & Peele" with Jordan Peele. The show won the 2016 Emmy Award for Outstanding Variety Sketch Series, with Key being individually nominated for acting and co-writing with Peele. Key was previously nominated for five Emmy Awards for his work on the show, as well as a 2016 Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series. "Key & Peele" won a 2014 Peabody Award and an American Comedy Award for Best Alternative Comedy Series. The show has become a TV and viral sensation, with 15 total Emmy® nominations and approaching a billion cumulative online hits. The series concluded its five season run in September 2015.
Key can currently be seen in John Hamburg's comedy Why Him? in which he stars alongside James Franco, Bryan Cranston and Megan Mullally. 20th Century Fox released the film on December 23. Earlier in the year, he starred in in Mike Birbiglia's critically acclaimed Don't Think Twice, which premiered at this year's South by Southwest and Tribeca Film Festivals, and was widely regarded as one of the best films of 2016. He also co-starred and produced Warner Brothers' Keanu, alongside Jordan Peele.
Keegan recently wrapped production on Nick Stoller's comedy series "Friends from College" that will premiere on Netflix later this year.
Music for the show will be performed by vocalist-instrumentalist SPENCER LUDWIG. The trumpeter, singer, producer and dancer was the lyrical lead trumpeter for the multiplatinum-selling indie pop act, Capital Cities and toured on Katy Perry's Prismatic World Tour. In April of 2015, Ludwig signed a worldwide record deal as a solo artist with Warner Bros. Records.
"NFL Honors," which debuted in Indianapolis in 2012, is an annual event hosted from the Super Bowl city the evening before the AFC and NFC champions meet. Key joins ALEC BALDWIN, SETH MEYERS and CONAN O'BRIEN on the list of award-winning celebrities to host the NFL's awards show.
The show includes the announcement of THE ASSOCIATED PRESS' annual accolades and the newest PRO FOOTBALL HALL OF FAME class. Preceding FOX's telecast, NFL Network will air "Super Bowl Saturday Night" at 7 PM ET covering all the sights and sounds from the Red Carpet presented by VISA at NFL Honors.
The full list of awards that will be presented is:
95 PLAYERS GRANTED SPECIAL ELIGIBILITY FOR 2017 NFL DRAFT
8 additional players who have graduated also eligible for selection
The National Football League announced today the names of 95 players who have been granted special eligibility for the 2017 NFL Draft and 8 players who have fulfilled their degree requirements with college football eligibility remaining and are also eligible for selection in the April 27-29 draft in Philadelphia.
The following 8 players have in timely fashion under NFL rules officially notified the league office that they have fulfilled their degree requirements. Consequently, they are eligible for selection in the 2017 Draft:
Each of the 95 players granted special eligibility has met the league’s three-year eligibility rule and each has submitted a written application in which he renounced his remaining college football eligibility. The deadline for receiving applications was January 16.
The players granted special eligibility for the 2017 NFL Draft:
The players granted special eligibility for the NFL Draft the past 10 years:
MORE THAN 30 SUPER BOWL LI COMMUNITY EVENTS
TO TAKE PLACE IN THE HOUSTON AREA
Super Bowl LI brings much more than football to the Houston area. Throughout the weeks preceding the game, more than 30 charitable activities and community outreach events will enrich the community and provide lasting legacies.
Super Bowl Week activities include the announcement of the annual Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award presented by Nationwide winner, the first-ever live American Heart Association-NFL PLAY 60 Challenge Virtual Field Trip, a series of community projects made possible by millions of dollars in NFL Foundation Super Bowl Legacy Grants and the Super Bowl LI Host Committee and a number of youth character development events including an InSideOut Character Initiative Forum and the NFL's Women's Summit.
During the week, the NFL Verizon will host an Unsung Heroes luncheon for volunteers and employees at local domestic violence and sexual assault prevention organizations and shelters. The league is also working with local organizations on social issues including human trafficking, providing financial grants to address issues in the Houston area.
The following are just some of the ways the NFL and Super Bowl LI will positively impact the community.
Note: NFL player names will be added in the daily media advisories.
NFL Experience Driven by Genesis – pro football's interactive theme park - will return to Houston for the first time since Super Bowl XXXVII in 2004, this event offers fans a unique chance to get involved in the festivities surrounding Super Bowl LI, offering interactive games, youth football clinics, merchandise from NFL Shop presented by Visa, player autograph sessions and more.
Celebrating the history of the game and electrifying atmosphere of Super Bowl LI, NFL Experience Driven by Genesis at the George R. Brown Convention Center (1001 Avenida De Las Americas) will be open to the public Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 28 - 29and again Wednesday-Sunday, Feb. 1 - 5.
The hub of Super Bowl fan activity, NFL Experience provides visitors of all ages an opportunity to experience the game like never before. Fans can test their football skills in interactive games, receive autographs from current stars and legends of the game, shop the latest NFL team and Super Bowl gear in the NFL's largest retail space in the nation, and get a photo with the most prestigious trophy in sports, the Vince Lombardi Trophy. For more information and a complete schedule of events for NFL Experience Driven by Genesis visit www.SuperBowl.com and download the Super Bowl LI Houston – Fan Mobile Pass app.
Tickets for NFL Experience Driven by Genesis can be purchased online exclusively through www.Ticketmaster.com. Tickets are $35.00 for adults and $25.00 for children 12 and under, and permit entry for a particular day and time. An NFLXtra Fast Pass may be purchased for $55.00. Beginning Jan. 28, opening day of NFL Experience Driven by Genesis, fans can purchase tickets at NFL Experience Box Office located in the George R. Brown Convention Center. Tickets sold at NFL Experience box office will go on sale two hours before opening daily. For more information and to find out about special family packages available online only, visit www.SuperBowl.com. Tickets purchased online are subject to a Ticketmaster service charge.
On Thursday, Feb. 2 local high school students will receive a $5 discount at NFL Experience Driven by Genesis.
2017 NFL Experience Driven by Genesis Hours of Operation:
Saturday, Jan. 28 10 a.m. – 10 p.m.
Sunday, Jan. 29 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Wednesday, Feb. 1 3 p.m. – 10 p.m.
Thursday, Feb. 2 3 p.m. – 10 p.m.
Friday, Feb. 3 10 a.m. – 10 p.m.
Saturday, Feb. 4 10 a.m. – 10 p.m.
Super Bowl Sunday (February 5) 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
(Times are local – Central Time – and are subject to change)
The complete schedule for NFL Experience Driven by Genesis, and other Super Bowl LI gameday and event information, will be posted on www.SuperBowl.com and in the Super Bowl LI Houston – Fan Mobile Pass app. To download the app, visit the app store or www.NFL.com/SBApp. Fans are encouraged to follow @SuperBowl and tag their posts and photos using hashtag #SB51.
For more information, contact Crystal Fukumoto at 818-921-8091 or CrystalF@bzapr.com.SUPER BOWL LIVE
Super Bowl LIVE is the Houston Super Bowl Host Committee's nine-day fan festival leading up to Super Bowl LI in Houston. The festival, a free event with music, food, games and attractions, will be located in and around Discovery Green Park (1500 McKinney St.) in downtown Houston from Saturday, Jan. 28 through Saturday, Feb. 5.
The Host Committee has partnered with NASA to create Future Flight, the signature attraction of Super Bowl LIVE. Future Flight combines a virtual reality experience with a 90-foot drop tower that takes passengers on a trip to Mars and back, landing just in time for Super Bowl LI.
A series of concerts will take place on the Super Bowl LIVE main stage including SOLANGE KNOWLES, ROBERT GLASPER and LIZZO on Thursday, Feb. 2; LEON BRIDGES, SHAKEY GRAVES and ROBERT ELLIS on Friday, Feb. 3; and ZZ TOP, GARY CLARK JR. and THE SUFFERS on Saturday, Feb. 4. Houston-based performers will also be on the main and secondary stage throughout the week, including bands THE TONTONS, WILD MOCCASINS, LOS SKARNALES, NICK GAITAN, FAT TONY, BUXTON and many more.
In addition, the Host Committee has created two Super Bowl LIVE programming opportunities aimed at bringing local youth from different communities together. Touchdown Houston continues to bring the Super Bowl experience to local youth with inclusive and fun Play On activities.
The Houston Super Bowl Host Committee has invited local community youth football teams to experience the excitement of the Super Bowl by squaring off in flag football games. Participating teams hail from various parts of the city and will get their taste of the spotlight as they engage in friendly competition in Root Memorial Square before thousands of Super Bowl LIVE visitors. The games will include special half-time performances from the club cheerleading teams, local marching pep bands and dance teams. The flag football games will take place on Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 28-29 and Friday and Saturday, Feb. 3- 4 from 11 a.m. – 12 p.m.
Play LIVE with Playworks
The Houston Super Bowl Host Committee has partnered with Playworks to provide children and families from the Greater Houston area an hour of fun and games through football-themed activities, four-square, tag, and much more. School-age youth can participate in these activities which promote positive social values, higher self-esteem, and a healthy lifestyle during the play hour. Playworks is a national nonprofit organization that leverages the power of safe, fun and healthy play at school every day. To learn more about Playworks, go to www.playworks.org. The Play LIVE with Playworks will take place Saturday, and Sunday, Jan. 28-29 and Friday and Saturday, Feb. 3-4 from 2-3 p.m.
Super Bowl LIVE Hours of Operation:
Saturday, Jan. 28 10 a.m. – 11 p.m.
Sunday, Jan. 29 10 a.m. – 9 p.m.
Monday, Jan. 30 3 p.m. – 9 p.m.
Tuesday, Jan. 31 3 p.m. – 9 p.m.
Wednesday, Feb. 1 3 p.m. – 11 p.m.
Thursday, Feb. 2 3 p.m. – 11 p.m.
Friday, Feb. 3 10 a.m. – 11 p.m.
Saturday, Feb. 4 10 a.m. – 11 p.m.
Super Bowl Sunday (February 5) 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
For more information, contact Kevin Cooper at email@example.com or Chris Madigan at firstname.lastname@example.org.HOUSTON SUPER BOWL HOST COMMITTEE PROJECT 51
Project 51 encourages Houston high school students to get involved in their community by collectively pledging 51,000 hours of community service in the months preceding Super Bowl LI. Students and schools will be recognized for their community service by the Houston Super Bowl Host Committee and the NFL Youth & High School Football department. Project 51 supports the Host Committee's Lead On initiative which encourages students to be active leaders in their schools and community. Those making a pledge could win tickets to Super Bowl Opening Night Fueled by Gatorade, a tour of NRG Stadium or a Meet and Greet with an NFL player.
The promotion period began at 12 p.m. ET on Friday, Dec. 23, 2016 and ends at 11:59 p.m. ET on Monday, Jan. 23. For official rules, please visit www.houstoncommitteeproject51.com.
For more information, contact Allison Wright at email@example.com or 619-316-1362.NFL PLAY 60 CHARACTER CAMP
On Monday, Jan. 30 at 9 a.m., the NFL will host a free Character Camp on the field at NFL Experience Driven by Genesis at the George R. Brown Convention Center (1001 Avenida De Las Americas) before NFL Experience is open to the public. The event will include 300 predominantly-Hispanic youth from the Houston area. The non-contact football camp will be led by Pro Football Hall of Fame offensive tackle ANTHONY MUÑOZ.
The NFL PLAY 60 Character Camps program is a partnership between the NFL and the Muñoz Agency. The mission of the camps are to make a positive impact on youth through teaching football skills, emphasizing exercise, and reinforcing the importance of character in athletics and life. The camp is part of a series of NFL PLAY 60 Character Camps hosted as part of the NFL's year-round Hispanic outreach initiative, focused on offering youth opportunities to play and experience the game of football. Since the inception of NFL PLAY 60 Character Camps in 2012, over 60 camps have been held impacting more than 20,000 youth across the country.
For more information, contact Darlene Capiro, NFL, at Darlene.Capiro@nfl.com.NFL PLAY 60 CHALLENGE SCHOOL VISIT
The NFL and Houston Texans players will visit Frank Black Middle School (1575 Chantilly Ln.) on Monday, Jan. 30 at 1 p.m. to reward them for successfully completing the Super Bowl LI edition of the NFL PLAY 60 Challenge. The NFL PLAY 60 Challenge, developed in conjunction with the American Heart Association, is the primary in-school curriculum for NFL PLAY 60. Sixth-grade students at Frank Black Middle School successfully completed the NFL PLAY 60 Challenge, a Super Bowl program that taught students the importance of getting 60 minutes of daily physical activity. Frank Black Middle School will also receive a $2,500 NFL PLAY 60 grant from the NFL and American Heart Association to be used to support the school's health and fitness education efforts.
More than 24,000 fourth, fifth, and sixth graders from Houston counties including Austin, Brazoria, Chambers, Fort Bend, Galveston, Harris, Liberty, Montgomery, San Jacinto, Walker, and Waller registered for the Challenge in the months leading up to Super Bowl. The schools that successfully completed the Challenge are invited to NFL PLAY 60 Kids Day at NFL Experience Driven by Genesis, on Wednesday, Feb. 1 (description below).
For more information, contact Ana Blinder, NFL, at 212-450-2467 or firstname.lastname@example.orgNFL PLAY 60 CHALLENGE VIRTUAL FIELD TRIP
On Tuesday, Jan. 31 at 12:00 p.m. CT live from the NFL Experience Driven by Genesis at the George R. Brown Convention Center (1001 Avenida De Las Americas), the NFL and American Heart Association (AHA), working together with Discovery Education, will lead the first-ever AHA-NFL PLAY 60 Challenge Virtual Field Trip (VFT). The virtual class, featuring Houston Texans' players WHITNEY MERCILUS and CHRISTIAN COVINGTONand AHA's DR. MERCEDES CARNETHON, will be live-streamed in classrooms across the country, reaching thousands of students. In the VFT, students will learn the science behind cardio and strength exercises that NFL players use to stay fit. Mercilus and Covington will lead participating classrooms in quick physical activity sessions, after which students nationwide will have the opportunity to ask the VFT hosts live questions. The NFL PLAY 60 Challenge is designed to inspire youth to get the recommended 60 minutes of physical activity per day and help more schools become places that encourage physically active lifestyles year-round.
Registration for the VFT is free. To register your classroom or follow along at home, visit: http://www.aha-nflplay60challenge.org/field-trip.
For more information, contact Ana Blinder, email@example.com.SUPER BOWL LI INSIDEOUT CHARACTER INITIATIVE FORUM
The InSideOut Initiative recognizes the significant role coaches play in students' lives, and aims to shift the current win-at-all-costs sports culture to one of a four-part process centering on Awareness, Alignment, Action and Accountability. The initiative focuses on the purpose, power and privilege of coaching, and the responsibility coaches have to young athletes. The InSideOut Initiative will debut in Houston on Tuesday, Jan. 31 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.at the Houston Texans YMCA (5202 Griggs Rd.). Former NFL player and author of InSideOut Coaching: How Sports Can Transform Lives JOE EHRMANN and Executive Director of the InSideOut Initiative JODY REDMAN will take more than 100 Houston high school educational leaders and coaches on an InSideOut journey to examine their own character and to assist in the development of a coach-specific character game plan that will enhance the human growth and development of the student-athletes they coach.NFL-USO SUPER BOWL LI SALUTE TO SERVICE
The NFL and the USO continue to celebrate more than 50 years of partnership with Salute to Service. The NFL is proud to bring football to the USO family through programs and services year-round that tap the unique capabilities of football and help keep service members connected to family, home and country.
On Tuesday, Jan. 31 from 4 p.m. – 7 p.m., the NFL, USO and Houston Texans will host a barbeque to celebrate over 3,000 service members and their families at Ellington Field Joint Base Reserve. The event will feature NFL player meet and greets, photo opportunities with Houston Texans cheerleaders, music by Texas Marine Veteran CODY WAYNE, an NFL PLAY 60 zone for kids, a Madden Tournament and an NFL Raffle.
Additionally, Super Bowl care packages, which included branded Super Bowl LI decorations and promotional items, have been sent to 60 USO locations around the globe in support of their Super Bowl viewing parties.
For more information, contact Ana Blinder, NFL, at 212-450-2467 or firstname.lastname@example.org.NFL-USAA MILITARY OUTREACH
The following is a sampling of additional events planned for service members and their families in the Houston Area during Super Bowl Week:
For more information, contact Ana Blinder, NFL, at 212-450-2467 or email@example.com or Earl Brown, NFL, at Earl.Brown@NFL.com.SPECIAL OLYMPICS SKILLS AND DRILLS
The NFL, Special Olympics Texas and the Houston Texans will host a Special Olympics Skills and Drills Clinic and unified flag football scrimmage Friday, Feb. 3 from 1:30-3 p.m. at the George R. Brown Convention Center (1001 Avenida De Las Americas) featuring local Special Olympics athletes.
The NFL and Special Olympics are teaming to provide opportunities for athletes of all abilities to 'PLAY 60' through the expansion of Special Olympics Unified Flag Football. The two organizations will kick off their new partnership by hosting a unified flag football game at ESPN Wide World of Sports in Orlando during Pro Bowl Week.
PLAY 60 is the NFL's campaign to promote youth health and wellness, aimed at encouraging kids to get active for 60 minutes a day. For more information, visit NFLRUSH.com/PLAY60.
Special Olympics is a global movement that unleashes the human spirit through the transformative power and joy of sports, every day around the world. They empower people with intellectual disabilities to become accepted and valued members of their communities, which leads to a more respectful and inclusive society for all. Using sports as the catalyst and programming around health and education, Special Olympics is fighting inactivity, injustice and intolerance. Founded in 1968 by Eunice Kennedy Shriver, the Special Olympics movement has grown to more than 5.3 million athletes and Unified partners in 169 countries. With the support of more than 1 million coaches and volunteers, Special Olympics delivers 32 Olympic-type sports and over 108,000 games and competitions throughout the year.PLAY FOOTBALL FAMILY FESTIVAL
To celebrate the football community and the coaches and players that bring passion, fun and excitement to the sport, the NFL will host a Play Football Family Festival on Tuesday, Jan. 31 and Wednesday, Feb. 1 from 6 – 8 p.m. at the Taylor High School Performing Arts Center (2700 Kingsland Blvd, Katy) and the Aldine Campbell Center(1865 Aldine Bender Rd, Houston). The event will kick off with football clinics, taking parents through drills and introducing them to different elements of the game. Guests will then go through a helmet fitting, receive autographs from NFL players and enjoy entertainment elements such as photo opportunities, breakout panel sessions led by NFL Ambassadors and local high school coaches and food and beverages. The festival will conclude with an NFL player-led TED Talk.
To learn more about Play Football visit playfootball.com or follow #LetsPlayFootball on social media.SUPER BOWL LI BUSINESS CONNECT CELEBRATION
The NFL and the Houston Super Bowl Host Committee will host "Super Bowl LI Business Connect: Celebrating Opportunities & Success" event on Tuesday, Jan. 31 from 6:30 – 9:00 p.m. at the Ballroom at the Bayou (500 Texas Street, Houston, TX 77002). The event is a celebration of the Super Bowl LI Business Connect program spotlighting the accomplishments of Super Bowl LI Business Connect suppliers and local businesses that have grown and thrived under the tutelage of the program's professional development initiatives and, acknowledging NFL event contractors who've aggressively utilized the program throughout the year.
More than 400 Houston businesses in 50 vendor categories participated in the year and a half long Business Connect program, which is designed to create Super Bowl LI contracting opportunities for experienced, local diverse business owners. To qualify for participation in Business Connect, businesses must be 51 percent owned by a minority, woman, disabled veteran, lesbian, gay, bisexual and/or transgender individual. The Business Connect Celebration is a ticketed event for participating business owners. A networking reception will precede and follow the formal program. Former NFL Cornerback and Food Network Star Winner Eddie Jackson is the event's keynote speaker.
For more information, contact B.J. Waymer, NFL Business Connect, at BJ.Waymer@NFL.comor (704) 614-6352 or LaMecia Butler at lbutler@@HOUsuperbowl.com or (832)213-5130.NFL PLAY 60 KIDS' DAY AT NFL EXPERIENCE
NFL PLAY 60 Kids' Day gives more than 1,000 local children the opportunity to spend time with NFL players at the NFL Experience Driven by Genesis at the George R Brown Convention Center (1001 Avenida De Las Americas) on Wednesday, Feb. 1, from 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. Children from the local Houston area will take part in the excitement of Super Bowl Week alongside NFL players. Multi-platinum recording artist and Grammy Award winner JORDIN SPARKS will perform two songs and teach the kids a dance routine at the NFL Experience Field at approximately noon.
Kids will learn more about the importance of healthy living during Kids' Day as part of NFL PLAY 60, aimed at helping youngsters get 60 minutes of exercise each day. Classrooms earned their invite to Kids' Day by completing the NFL PLAY 60 Challenge, in partnership with the American Heart Association, in the months leading up to Super Bowl.
As part of their Kids' Day experience, local children will participate in interactive PLAY 60 fitness activities and take part in games including Punt, Pass & Kick, speed and mobility drills, quarterback challenge games, and extra point kicking stations.HOUSTON HABITAT FOR HUMANITY SUPERBUILD
On Wednesday, Feb. 1 from 3 p.m. – 5 p.m., Houston Habitat for Humanity (HHFH) is sponsoring SuperBUILD LI at 8706 Shady Vista Ln. The event is hosted in conjunction with Super Bowl LI to build 51 affordable homes for partner families. A sanctioned NFL event since 2003, SuperBUILD provides affordable housing options for low to moderate income families through volunteerism. HHFH will invite NFL players to visit the job sites, participate in home dedications and celebrate with families who were able to achieve their dream of homeownership.NFL PLAYER CARE FOUNDATION SCREENINGS
On Wednesday-Friday, Feb. 1-3, the NFL Player Care Foundation (PCF), supported by the NFL Alumni Association, are proud to partner with one of the nation's premier medical providers, Tulane University School of Medicine, to conduct its annual Super Bowl Healthy Body and Mind Screening program. This complimentary national program is open to all former NFL players and includes cardiovascular and prostate screenings and mental health resources and education.
NFL Player Care Foundation screenings are offered as part of PCF's research programs, which help to advance public awareness and scientific understanding of health issues that affect former NFL players. The screening will take place at the Houston Marriott at the Texas Medical Center (6580 Fannin St., Salons A, B & C) from 8 a.m. – 2 p.m.
The PCF is an independent foundation created in 2007 by a partnership between NFL owners, the NFL Players Association, Pro Football Hall of Fame, and the NFL Alumni Association. Since its inception, the organization has screened more than 4,000 retired NFL players and provided over $11 million in emergency financial assistance. For more information, visit nflplayercare.com.
The screenings are closed to the public. Media inquiries may be directed to Dana Lihan at Dana.Lihan@nfl.com.SUPER BOWL LEGACY GRANT EVENT
The NFL seeks to improve the surrounding communities of the Super Bowl host city with a Super Bowl Legacy Grant donation. This year, the NFL Foundation provided a $1 million grant to the Houston Super Bowl Host Committee via "Touchdown Houston" in an effort to leave an impact on all 11 counties of Houston by concentrating on education, health and community enhancement. Grant focuses include youth physical fitness and wellness, after school programs, health care and food access, neighborhood improvement, early childhood education, anti-poverty, dropout and homeless prevention strategies.
On Thursday, Feb. 2 at 10 a.m., NFL Commissioner ROGER GOODELL and Houston Super Bowl Host Committee executives amongst others will take part in the Super Bowl Legacy Grant press conference at Pro-Vision Academy (4590 Wilmington St.). NFL Legend and Pro-Vision Academy founder ROYNELL YOUNG will lead attendees through a ground breaking ceremony to celebrate a football field refurbishment granted to the school. Following the press conference, students will participate in a player panel on character education with current and former NFL players and led by former NFL player and author of InSideOut Coaching: How Sports Can Transform Lives JOE EHRMANN.Ehrmann is the co-founder of the InSideOut Initiative, designed to help high school communities recognize the responsibility they have to their students and enhance the human growth and development of the student-athletes who play.
For more information, contact Ana Blinder, NFL, at firstname.lastname@example.org or Amanda Weeks, Houston Super Bowl Host Commitee, at email@example.com.MAKE-A-WISH®
Through the assistance of the NFL, Make-A-Wish will grant the wishes of 12 children to attend Super Bowl LI. Attending the Super Bowl continues to be a wish that transcends generations: every year since 1982, one or more wish kids has wished to attend the big game.
This year, the children and their families will arrive in Houston on Thursday, Feb. 2 for a welcome reception. Wish children and their families will participate in several other activities related to the Super Bowl and will attend the game at NRG Stadium through the support of the NFL and other organizations.
Make-A-Wish grants the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy. According to a 2011 U.S. study of wish impact, most health professionals surveyed believe a wish-come-true can have positive impacts on the health of children. Kids say wishes give them renewed strength to fight their illnesses, and their parents say these experiences help strengthen the entire family. Based in Phoenix, Make-A-Wish is one of the world's leading children's charities, serving children in every community in the United States and its territories. With the help of generous donors and more than 33,000 volunteers, Make-A-Wish grants a wish somewhere in the country every 34 minutes. It has granted more than 285,000 wishes since its inception in 1980; more than 15,300 in 2016 alone. Visit Make-A-Wish at wish.orgto learn more.
For more information on wish kid activities and media opportunities during Super Bowl week, contact Josh deBerge at 602-792-3185 or firstname.lastname@example.org.NFL WOMEN'S SUMMIT— "PLAYS FOR LIFE"
On Feb. 3 (9:00 a.m. - 5:30 p.m.) and 4 (9:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.), the NFL will host this year's Women's Summit—Plays for Life. Building on the success of last year's Women's Summit—which explored the role of sports participation in developing leadership, teamwork, and other skills that promote success throughout one's life and career, Plays for Life expands upon that conversation by engaging teen girls through an interactive and experiential event focused on personal development and achievement.
During the two-day event, 250 Houston-area teen girls will hear from prominent leaders from across the NFL and beyond about their own personal journeys and participate in a discussion about how to achieve their goals, prepare for life's challenges, and best utilize the tools that are critical for personal and professional development.
A live stream of the event will be hosted by women's leadership platform www.MAKERS.com.
More than three dozen speakers and participants will be announced in the coming days. The event will take place at the Citadel (12130 Kirby Dr).
The event is limited to invited guests. For more information, visit www.NFLWomensSummit.com and follow #NFLWomensSummit on social media. For more information about covering the Summit, contact Clare Graff, NFL at Clare.Graff@NFL.com.NFL FOUNDATION GOLF TOURNAMENT: "Legends on the Links"
In celebration of its 26th year, the NFL Foundation is partnering with the NFL Legends community to host an 18-hole golf tournament on Friday, Feb. 3 starting at 8:00 a.m. at Golf Club of Houston (5860 Wilson Rd., Humble), home course to the PGA Tour's Shell Houston Open.
Teams of amateur golfers will be captained by NFL Legends in 18-hole team scramble events to be played on both the Tournament Course, which hosts the PGA Tour event annually, and the Member Course, where the PGA Tour played from 2003 through 2005. The celebrity captains entered thus far are LARRY BROWN, DONNIE EDWARDS, AHMAN GREEN, RODNEY HAMPTON, DHANI JONES, KWAMIE LASSITER, RYAN LEAF, EJ MANUEL, CURTIS MCGRIFF, MARTY MOORE, JONATHAN OGDEN, CHAD PENNINGTON, MIKE QUICK, JOHN RANDLE, MIKE RUCKER, WILL SHIELDS, AL SMITH, MACK STRONG, BEN TATE, JOHN URSHEL and LEONARD WHEELER. Additionally, NFL Legends' Community Directors and Coordinators that serve as ambassadors across the country will be in attendance and facilitating the tournament.
Hospitality golf packages are open to the general public (deadline Jan. 28), with a tournament entry donation of $6,000 per team (teams of three paired with a NFL Legend) or $2,500 per individual benefiting the NFL Foundation and NFL Player Care Foundation. To register for the tournament, contact Laura Malfy at Laura.Malfy@NFL.com.
For more information, contact Liz McCollum at email@example.com or 813-421-0550.ROSS INITIATIVE IN SPORTS FOR EQUALITY (RISE) SUPER BOWL TOWN HALL
The Ross Initiative in Sports for Equality (RISE) and NFL will host their second-annual Super Bowl Town Hall, "From Protest to Progress: The Power of Sports to Improve Race Relations," from 4 to 6 p.m. Friday, Feb. 3. The town hall, hosted by Texas Southern University in Houston and supported by The Players' Tribune, will be broadcast live on Sirius XM radio. Current and former NFL greats, including policy advocates ANQUAN BOLDIN of the Detroit Lions and MALCOLM JENKINS of the Philadelphia Eagles and Hall of Famer AENEAS WILLIAMS, will participate in a two-part panel discussion, reviewing lessons learned from the activist athlete and examining solution-oriented next steps for the sports industry to drive social change. RISE will release a report looking at the reach and impact of, reaction to and outcomes of activist athletes in the second half of 2016. RISE aims to use sports to improve race relations. To learn more, visit www.risetowin.org.
For more information, contact Allison Wright at firstname.lastname@example.org or 619-316-1362.NFL & ALL PRO DAD FAMILY FOOTBALL CLINIC
Current and former players celebrate football and family at the second annual NFL & All Pro Dad Family Football Clinic at Super Bowl LI. Presented by NFL Player Engagement and All Pro Dad organization, players are invited to bring their children and significant others to participate in fun football activities on Friday, Feb. 3 at 9 a.m. at the NFL Experience Youth Field in the George R. Brown Convention Center (1001 Avenida De Las Americas). Players and their children will learn how fun it is to PLAY 60 and create new football memories as a family. Within each football activity, kids and their parents will participate in an exercise designed to foster engagement and relationship building among family members. The clinic will begin at 9:30 a.m. with player media availability at 11:30 a.m.
For more information, contact Crystal Fukumoto at email@example.com ANNUAL REBUILDING TOGETHER "KICKOFF TO REBUILD"
On Friday, Feb. 3 from 8:30 a.m. – 4 p.m., in conjunction with Super Bowl LI, Rebuilding Together Houston will host a community revitalization project to rehabilitate the main section of the historic Independence Heights neighborhood as a Legacy of Super Bowl LI in Houston. Independence Heights is the first self-governing, African American city incorporated in the state of Texas. It is important to revive the neighborhood and keep its history alive, allowing longtime residents to age in place. The creation of a welcome center will allow visitors the opportunity to learn about the neighborhood's history, beginning in 1905, through its eventual integration into the city of Houston, and its vital role in Houston's community today.
For the past 22 years, Rebuilding Together has partnered with the NFL to host projects in Super Bowl cities. These NFL-sanctioned events provide critical home repairs for low-income homeowners and their communities. The event will include help for individual homeowners in need and create a safer, healthier and beautifully rebuilt section of Independence Heights.
To learn more about Rebuilding Together's Kickoff to Rebuild project, visit rebuildingtogether.org/ktr/. For more information, contact Amy Seusing at ASeusing@rebuildingtogether.org.CHARACTER PLAYBOOK HOUSTON LAUNCH
"Character Playbook," a joint initiative of the NFL and United Way Worldwide and operated by EverFi, an education technology leader in more than 13,000 schools across the nation, will launch in Houston on Friday, Feb. 3 at 1:00 p.m. at Pilgrim Academy (6302 Skyline Dr.). The digital course is comprised of six interactive modules that support positive character development, social-emotional learning and healthy relationships for grades 7-9. Houston Texans players will sit on a panel and discuss character development and decision-making with students. Students will then go through the modules, designed to help students develop healthy relationships and social norms. Character Playbook will be provided to 40 schools in the Houston area via a joint partnership between the Houston Texans, United Way of Greater Houston and Verizon.SUPER BOWL GOSPEL CELEBRATION
The 18th Annual Super Bowl Gospel Celebration will take place on Friday, Feb. 3 at 7:30 p.m. at Lakewood Church (3700 Southwest Freeway). The Super Bowl Gospel Celebration brings together Super Bowl champions and Pro Bowl players with Grammy Award-winning contemporary Christian, gospel and mainstream artists all on one stage. The Super Bowl Gospel Celebration also gives back to the community. Each year, the event identifies a charity to donate a portion of its proceeds. For the second consecutive year, a portion of the proceeds will benefit the NFL Players Care Foundation.
For more information, visit www.superbowlgospel.com1st AND FUTURE
The NFL, in collaboration with the Texas Medical Center (TMC) is calling on innovators to share their solutions to help advance the game of football and athlete safety. On Saturday, Feb. 4, the partners will host 1st and Future, a unique startup competition that will take place at the TMC Innovation Institute (2450 Holcombe Blvd.). Up to nine startups will be invited to present their game-changing technologies in each of the following three categories: Communicating with the Athlete, Training the Athlete and Materials to Protect the Athlete. The startups will pitch their products to an exclusive audience, including a panel of judges, NFL team owners and executives and representatives from the Houston Super Bowl Host Committee and TMC. One winner from each category will be selected by a panel of judges comprising of former NFL players, entrepreneurs and medical professionals. The winners will receive a $50,000 prize from the NFL to further develop their innovation; acceptance into TMCx, TMC's world-renowned program for start-ups; and two tickets to Super Bowl LI.
For information on the submission process, selection criteria and official rules, visit www.tmc.edu/1st-and-future/. The deadline to submit applications is January 20, 2017.
For more information, contact Amy Jorgensen, NFL at Amy.Jorgensen@nfl.comSUPER BOWL BREAKFAST
The 2017 Super Bowl Breakfast will be held Saturday, Feb. 4 at 8 a.m. at the Marriott Marquis Houston (1777 Walker St.). The breakfast will feature the presentation of the Bart Starr Award, presented by Super Bowl Champion Coach, TONY DUNGY. The award, voted on by NFL players, honors outstanding character and leadership in the home, on the field and in the community.
In addition to Tony Dungy and the 2017 Award winner, the program will include former NFL players ROGER STAUBACH, BRUCE MATTHEWS, ANTHONY MUNOZ, DERRICK BROOKS and emcee JAMES BROWN, host of The NFL Today and Thursday Night Football.
For more information, contact Jordan Sok at firstname.lastname@example.org or 859-519-7750.HOUSTON CAREERS IN SPORTS FORUM
The NFL will celebrate high school coaches and educate students on various career opportunities in the sports industry on Saturday, Feb. 3 from 9:30 a.m. – 2 p.m. at Cemo Hall at the University of Houston. Parents will hear from NFL players and professionals in the sports industry about the vast career possibilities off the field. Guests will enjoy music from a professional DJ and food and beverages and interact with sports experts and NFL players. The event is open to Houston high school students interested in sports, but space is limited.NFLPA SMOCKS & JOCKS
On Saturday, Feb. 4 from 10:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. at Caracol (2200 Post Oak Blvd.), the NFL Players Association will hold its annual art auction and jazz brunch called Smocks & Jocks supporting the Gene Upshaw Player Assistance Trust Fund and a local foundation. Artwork from active and former players and others connected to professional football will be auctioned as part of the charity event. This event is invite-only.
For more information, please contact Leslie Isler at Leslie.Isler@nflpa.comTROUPE21'S 17TH ANNUAL PLAYER NETWORKING EVENT™
Troupe21's 17th Annual Player Networking Event™ (PNE) at the Super Bowl will take place Saturday, Feb. 4 from 11 a.m. - 6 p.m. at Houston Community College—West Loop Center (5601 West Loop S). PNE, an NFL sanctioned event for 15 years, helps active and former NFL players transition into meaningful second careers.
The networking event will include a private banking workshop; focus groups for players, corporate guests and vendors; an Internet radio broadcast featuring player-owned businesses and sponsors; a social media challenge designed to promote athlete and corporate responsibility; a scholarship drive for high school football student-athletes to attend the Sound Mind Sound Body Football Academy; and a trade show featuring corporations interested in helping players pursue charitable, employment, and entrepreneurial goals.
To learn more about PNE 2017 and PNE Week go to www.pneinfo.com or follow on Twitter@NFLPNE.TASTE OF THE NFL
Taste of the NFL (TNFL) is a 501(c)(3) dedicated to raising awareness and funds for hunger relief organizations in the 32 NFL cities and across the country. Proudly celebrating its 26th year at Super Bowl LI, the organization conducts national and local fundraising events throughout the year, culminating in the annual Party with a Purpose® on Super Bowl Eve. Since its inception, Taste of the NFL has raised more than $25 million, which has provided more than 275 million meals for Americans. All proceeds raised are donated directly to local and national food banks in each of the 32 NFL cities.
This season's Party with a Purpose® will be held at the University of Houston (4800 Calhoun Rd.) on Saturday, Feb. 4 from 7-11 p.m. This star-studded fundraising event celebrates two of America's favorite pastimes—food and football—by bringing together exceptional cuisine, prominent chefs from around the country, celebrities, NFL players, coaches, legends, and more, all to support the fight against hunger. ALEX GUARNASCHELLI and RICHARD BLAIS are the Culinary Hosts for this year's Party with a Purpose®.
Follow @TasteoftheNFL on Instagram and Twitter as they #KickHunger this season, or visit Taste of the NFL on Facebook at facebook.com/TasteoftheNFL.
Tickets to this event can be purchased at www.TasteoftheNFL.com. Media wishing to cover the event should apply for credentials here.
For more information, contact Pamela Spiegel at TNFL@sunshinesachs.com or at 212-691-2800.SUPER BOWL ENVIRONMENTAL PROGRAM
The NFL and the Houston Super Bowl Host Committee have teamed up to develop a series of initiatives to reduce the environmental impact of Super Bowl Verizon is a key partner in several of these projects including the Super Kids – Super Sharing, the Super Bowl LI Urban Forestry Project and a public E-Waste Recycling Rally.
The Super Kids – Super Sharing Sports Equipment and Book Donation Event was held at Thursday, Jan. 19. Tens of thousands of books, school supplies, games and pieces of sports equipment were collected and distributed to low-income schools and youth programs throughout the region. As part of Super Kids, local students have also donated used cell phones through HopeLine® from Verizon. HopeLine® collects wireless phones and accessories no longer in use and turns them into financial support for domestic violence organizations nationwide.
The Super Bowl LI E-Waste Recycling Rally will be held Saturday, Jan. 21 from 9 a.m.- 1 p.m. at the Houston Zoo, Medical Center Entrance (1481 Cambridge Street). This recycling rally, sponsored by Verizon, will be open to the public and local residents may drop off all types of electronic waste to be recycled responsibly and kept out of local landfills. Items such as computers, printers, monitors, cell phones and televisions will be accepted.
Other environmental projects include:
"Green" energy will be used to power major Super Bowl event venues throughout Houston including NRG Stadium, the George R. Brown Convention Center (site of the Super Bowl Media Center and NFL Experience), and the hotels being used by the NFL and AFC teams and by the NFL Super Bowl staff. NRG will be providing renewable energy certificates (RECs) equivalent to the electricity usage at these facilities to mitigate the climate impact of energy emissions.
Extra prepared food from Super Bowl events will be recovered in partnership with the Houston Food Bank and a number of local nonprofit organizations to provide meals for shelters, missions, soup kitchens and other community programs.
Recovery of all event materials will begin immediately after most Super Bowl events. During the week following the game, there will be an intensive drive to collect and donate items left over from Super Bowl including building materials, décor, fabric, carpeting and sign materials. These items will be donated to local organizations that can reuse, repurpose or remanufacture the material. The NFL has incorporated environmental projects into the management of Super Bowl for more than 20 years.
For more information, contact Jack Groh, NFL Environmental Program Director, at 401-952-0886 or Jack.Groh@nflenvironment.com.
NFL STATEMENT ON THE RAIDERS
Today, the Oakland Raiders submitted an application to relocate their franchise to Las Vegas, as is provided for under the NFL Policy and Procedures for Proposed Franchise Relocations.
The application will be reviewed in the coming weeks by league staff and the Stadium and Finance Committees. The relocation of a franchise requires the affirmative vote of three-quarters of the NFL clubs (24 of 32).
Award Recipient to be Recognized at NFL Honors in Houston
Feb. 4 on FOX the Night Before Super Bowl LI
The NFL and USAA, the league's Official Military Appreciation Sponsor, announced Atlanta Falcons head coach DAN QUINN and Pittsburgh Steelers offensive tackle ALEJANDRO VILLANUEVA as the two finalists for the sixth annual Salute to Service Awardpresented by USAA.
Quinn and Villanueva were selected for their exceptional efforts to honor and support members of the military community. The Salute to Service Award recipient will be recognized at NFL Honors, a two-hour primetime awards special airing nationally on FOX on Saturday, Feb. 4, the night before Super Bowl LI in Houston.
USAA, a leading provider of insurance and other services to U.S. military members, veterans and their families, will contribute $25,000 in the winner's honor to the official aid societies representing all five military branches. The award recipient will receive a specially designed military challenge coin, recognizing their commitment to the military. In what has become a long-standing tradition, challenge coins are presented to members of the military community to encourage excellence, boost morale or to recognize a fellow brother- or sister-in-arms.
"Since joining the NFL to launch Salute to Service in 2011, USAA has been proud to recognize leaders in the NFL community who honor the service and sacrifice of our nation's military," said Vice Admiral (Ret.) JOHN BIRD, USAA's senior vice president of military affairs. "With Alejandro Villanueva serving our country as an Army Ranger and continuing his military appreciation efforts today, and Dan Quinn dedicating his community service in the name of military appreciation and support, these individuals are extremely deserving finalists for this year's Salute to Service Award presented by USAA."
In October 2016, 32 NFL clubs nominated coaches, active and retired players, and team executives and personnel, who best demonstrated support for the military community. These nominees were publicly announced in November and the submissions were evaluated by a panel of judges, including last year's award recipient, Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver VINCENT JACKSON. Nominees' credentials are evaluated based on the positive effect of the individual's efforts on the military community, the type of service conducted, the thoroughness of the program and level of commitment.
The panel of judges, consisting of representatives from the U.S. military, the NFL and USAA, includes:
Below is the list of previous Salute to Service Award winners. The award is part of the NFL and USAA's year-round commitment to recognize and honor the military community.
Below is a brief overview on the two finalists. To learn more about all 32 team nominees, please visit www.nfl.com/salute.
COACH DAN QUINN (Atlanta Falcons)
Coach Quinn has always connected with the word "team" and has acknowledged that the military serves as the word's true definition. Since entering his second season with the Atlanta Falcons, Coach Quinn has wasted no time giving back to the military community in Georgia. During the spring of 2016, Coach Quinn hosted the 2nd Annual Rookie Club Olympics where he invited 100 military members from Fort Benning, Georgia to the Atlanta Falcons Training Facility to participate. Coach Quinn and his staff created the event to as a way for NFL players and the military community to unite and work together as a team.
"The military represents team on the highest level. It's an honor to be up for this award that recognizes the standard of excellence set by our nation's military and encourages our community to give back and support service members and their families who serve our nation," said Quinn.
Coach Quinn hosts "Military Day" at Training Camp and 20 military members at each Atlanta Falcons home game throughout the season. In an effort to continue to make his impact greater among the military community, Coach Quinn provided a special opportunity for families of fallen soldiers with the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS), hosting 63 families at the Atlanta Falcons Salute to Service game on November 27. All families were invited to attend a VIP visit to practice, and each family was provided a one-night hotel stay in Atlanta - all courtesy of Coach Quinn. Each player wore the initials of a fallen hero on their helmet during the game and during practice, and provided the families with a replica helmet of their player with a personalized note in honor of their hero.
Also, this past off-season Coach Quinn led four Atlanta Falcons players on a week-long USO Tour through the Pacific, including stops in Guam and Hawaii. Coach Quinn's appreciation for the military community is evident, and that is why he is one of two finalists for this year's 2016 Salute to Service Award.
ALEJANDRO VILLANUEVA (Pittsburgh Steelers)
Alejandro Villanueva grew up as a military child, living in United States and Europe where he played football at the American High School for the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE). Villanueva played football as a cadet at West Point and was commissioned in the United States Army in 2010.
Promoted to captain in 2014, Villanueva earned the Ranger Tab and deployed three times. He served with distinction and honor, receiving the Bronze Star Medal and the Bronze Star Medal for Valor for heroism in combat. After receiving an Honorable discharge from the Army, Villanueva attended the NFL Scouting Combine in 2014 and eventually earned a spot on the Steelers practice squad. Today, Villanueva is the starting left tackle for the Pittsburgh Steelers and credits his military background with influencing his approach to football.
"Serving in the Army taught me valuable lessons about honor, sacrifice and commitment. I'm humbled to be considered for this award and to have the opportunity to continue to give back to the military family," said Villanueva.
During his time with the team, Villanueva has participated in several community events and appearances to honor fellow military personnel and veterans, including "Heroes at Heinz Field" where earlier this season, Villanueva and his teammates hosted a group of veterans to participate in football skills and drills. He visited VA Hospitals in Pittsburgh, spending time with patients and sharing experiences in the military. Villanueva credits his military experience for affording him an incredible life experience and shaping him into the man he is today.
VIRTUAL FIELD TRIP LIVE FROM SUPER BOWL LI
Free Virtual Field Trip to be Live-Streamed in Classrooms Nationwide
The NFL and American Heart Association, together with Discovery Education, will host the first-ever AHA-NFL PLAY 60 Challenge Virtual Field Trip (VFT) live from Houston on Tuesday, Jan. 31 at 12 PM CT from the NFL Experience Driven by Genesis. The free virtual experience will be live-streamed in classrooms across the country, reaching thousands of students. Houston Texans players WHITNEY MERCILUS and CHRISTIAN COVINGTON and the American Heart Association's MERCEDES CARNETHON, Ph.D.will teach students the science behind cardio and strength exercises that NFL players use to stay fit and active. The hour-long session will also feature a Q&A, a physical activity session designed for a classroom setting and a behind-the-scenes look at the Houston Texans practice facility and Houston's Health Museum.
"The NFL is always seeking ways to innovate the PLAY 60 campaign and get kids active and healthy through the use of modern technology. We are excited to work with the American Heart Association and Discovery Education to provide new resources to classrooms nationwide to make physical activity easy and fun," said NFL Senior Vice President of Social Responsibility ANNA ISAACSON. "The VFT is an example of how to creatively use technology and digital resources to teach students the importance of a healthy lifestyle."
The NFL and the American Heart Association teamed in 2006 to create the NFL PLAY 60 Challenge to meet the American Heart Association's recommendation of at least 60 minutes of physical activity each day. Research has shown that physical activity leads to increased academic performance, and that in-classroom physical activity breaks improve cognitive skills and classroom behavior.
"Our collaboration with the NFL and Discovery Education helps to instill knowledge and healthy habits in young audiences in diverse populations across the country," said Chief Medical Officer for Prevention at the American Heart Association EDUARDO SANCHEZ, M.D. "Prevention is key to improving cardiovascular health and reducing heart disease and its risk factors, and engaging children in fun programs like the NFL PLAY 60 Challenge is a strategy to start early to get kids to be physically active and to help build future generations of adults with good health."
In addition to the Virtual Field Trip, the NFL PLAY 60 Challenge includes lesson plans that help teachers explain the impact of physical activity on health and wellness, a series of quick workout videos featuring Washington Redskins' player RYAN KERRIGAN and fun activities designed to get the entire family up and moving.
"A student's health and wellbeing can have a tremendous impact on their classroom performance," said Discovery Education Senior Vice President LORI MCFARLING. "Discovery Education is pleased to partner with the American Heart Association and National Football League to bring this event to schools nationwide, as it provides educators an engaging 'teachable moment' in which they can discuss with their students the importance of physical activity and the great impact it has on all areas of their lives."
DE INTERÉS – CAMPEONATOS DE CONFERENCIA
SÚPER CAMPEONATO. En 2016, los NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS ganaron su octavo título en línea de la AFC Este, la mayor cantidad de títulos divisionales consecutivos en la historia de la NFL, y avanzaron al Juego de Campeonato de la AFC por sexta temporada seguida, también la racha más larga en la historia. Los Patriots están 8-5 (.615) en Juegos de Campeonato de la AFC en la historia.
Los PITTSBURGH STEELERS avanzaron al Juego de Campeonato de la AFC por 16ª vez en la historia de la franquicia y están 8-7 (.533).
El ganador del Juego de Campeonato de la AFC del domingo establecerá una marca de la NFL de mayor cantidad de clasificaciones al Super Bowl en la historia de la NFL.
Los equipos con las mayores cantidades de apariciones en el Super Bowl:
Pittsburgh, New England y los GREEN BAY PACKERS tienen tres de los cuatro totales más altos de victoria en postemporada en la historia de la NFL y estarán en acción el domingo de Campeonato.
Los Steelers, que derrotaron a Miami en la vuelta de Comodines y a Kansas City en la vuelta Divisional, tienen 36 victorias en postemporada, la mayor cantidad en la historia de la NFL. Los Packers (34) y los Patriots (30) empatan el segundo y también el cuarto puesto, respectivamente, en victorias en postemporada en la historia.
Los equipos con las mayores cantidades de victorias en postemporada en la historia de la NFL:
-- NFL –
LO HECHO, HECHO ESTÁ. Los Juegos de Campeonato de este fin de semana tendrá tres mariscales de campo que se combinan para siete títulos del Super Bowl: el de New England TOM BRADY (cuatro), el de Pittsburgh BEN ROETHLISBERGER (dos) y el de Green Bay AARON RODGERS (uno).
Los mariscales de campo titulares para los Juegos de Campeonato de este fin de semana con títulos del Super Bowl:
Las siete victorias en el Super Bowl combinadas entre Brady, Roethlisberger y Rodgers significan la mayor cantidad por los cuatro mariscales de campo titulares jugando en los Juegos de Campeonato de Conferencia de una misma temporada.
Las mayores cantidades de victorias combinadas en el Super Bowl por los cuatro mariscales de campo titulares en los Juegos de Campeonato de una temporada:
-- NFL –
PASADORES PROLÍFICOS. El mariscal de campo de Atlanta MATT RYAN lideró la NFL con índice de pasador de 117.1 en 2016, el quinto más alto en la historia de la NFL en una sola temporada. El de New England TOM BRADY (112.2) y el de Green Bay AARON RODGERS (104.2) se ubicaron segundo y cuarto respectivamente.
Los cuatro mariscales de campo proyectados para titularizar los Juegos de Campeonato de la AFC y de la NFC el domingo se combinan para un índice de pasador de 107.0 esta temporada, el más alto índice de pasador combinado en temporada regular por los cuatro mariscales de campo titulares en los Juegos de Campeonato de una temporada.
Los cuatro mariscales de campo titulares con el más alto índice de pasador combinado en los Juegos de Campeonato de una temporada:
-- NFL –
ESTRELLAS EN RACHA. Varios de los mejores y más brillantes de la NFL tienen la oportunidad de dejar su huella como marca de postemporada en el domingo de Campeonatos de Conferencia.
El mariscal de campo de Green Bay AARON RODGERS lanzó 355 yardas y dos anotaciones en la victoria de los Packers 34-31 en Dallas en la vuelta Divisional. Rodgers, que lanzó al menos 350 yardas y dos anotaciones en ambos juegos de postemporada de esta temporada, puede igualar a DREW BREES (tres) en mayor cantidad de partidos de postemporada consecutivos con al menos 350 yardas aéreas y dos pases anotadores en la historia de la postemporada de la NFL.
Las mayores cantidades de partidos de postemporada consecutivos con al menos 350 yardas aéreas y dos pases anotadores:
El corredor de Pittsburgh LE’VEON BELL acarreó 170 yardas en el triunfo de los Steelers 18-16 en Kansas City en la vuelta Divisional y es el primer jugador en la historia de la NFL en acarrear al menos 150 yardas en cada uno de los primeros dos partidos de su carrera en postemporada. Bell, que tuvo 167 yardas por tierra y dos anotaciones en el triunfo de la vuelta de Comodines contra Miami, tiene los dos desempeños más altos en yardas terrestres en un solo juego en la historia de la franquicia en postemporada.
Con 113 yardas por tierra en New England el domingo, Bell se convertiría en el quinto jugador en la historia de la NFL con al menos 450 yardas por tierra en una sola postemporada.
Los jugadores con las mayores cantidades de yardas por tierra en una sola postemporada:
El mariscal de campo de Atlanta MATT RYAN lanzó 338 yardas con tres anotaciones para un índice de 125.7 en el triunfo de los Falcons 36-20 sobre Seattle en la vuelta Divisional.
Con tres pases anotadores contra Green Bay el domingo, Ryan, que lanzó tres anotaciones en cada uno de sus últimos tres partidos de postemporada, se convertiría en el primer mariscal de campo en la historia de la NFL con al menos tres pases anotadores en cuatro juegos de postemporada consecutivos.
Las mayores cantidades de partidos de postemporada consecutivos con al menos tres pases anotadores:
-- NFL –
SÚPER COMBINACIÓN. El entrenador en jefe de New England BILL BELICHICK y el mariscal de campo TOM BRADY tuvo seis apariciones en el Super Bowl juntos, la mayor cantidad de presencias por cualquier combinación entrenador en jefe-mariscal de campo en la historia de la NFL.
Con una victoria el domingo contra los Steelers, los Patriots pueden extender su marca de la NFL de mayor cantidad de tales apariciones en el Super Bowl.
Las combinaciones de entrenador en jefe-mariscal de campo con las mayores cantidades de apariciones en el Super Bowl en la historia de la NFL:
Con una victoria, Belichick (seis) superaría al miembro del Salón de la Fama DON SHULA (seis) y se convertiría en el único entrenador en llevar a su(s) equipo(s) a siete Super Bowls.
Los entrenadores en jefe que alcanzaron las mayores cantidades de Super Bowls:
-- NFL –
PRESENTACIÓN DEL TROFEO DE LA AFC. El TROFEO LAMAR HUNT será presentado al ganador del Juego de Campeonato de la AFC.
El ya fallecido Hunt, fundador de los Kansas City Chiefs y de la American Football League, colaboró para que el futbol americano profesional consiguiera su estirpe de deporte Nº 1 de los Estados Unidos. En los 10 años de historia de los AFL, su equipo registró la mayor cantidad de victorias (87) y logró clasificar para disputar dos de los primeros cuatro Super Bowls, incluyendo una victoria en el Super Bowl IV.
En 1972 Hunt se convirtió en la primera persona proveniente de la AFL en ser exaltado como miembro del Salón de la Fama.
PRESENTACIÓN DEL TROFEO DE LA NFC. Al ganador del Juego de Campeonato de la NFC le será presentado el TROFEO GEORGE HALAS TROPHY.
Halas, ya fallecido dueño de los Chicago Bears y fundador de la NFL, es el entrenador más ganador de la historia (324-151-31) detrás de DON SHULA (347-173-6). Ganó seis campeonatos de la NFL con los Bears y es miembro exaltado destacado del Salón de la Fama (1963).