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How RFID Chips are Changing the NFL


TUG Member
Jun 6, 2005
Reaction score
Resorts Owned
How RFID Chips are Changing the NFL - by Aaron Tilley/ Forbes/ Tech/ forbes.com

"The chip technology that’s making your credit card more secure are also bringing big changes to football. This past year, every NFL player got hooked up to the internet with little chips. Equipped into their shoulder pads are now two radio-frequency identification (RFID) chips that wirelessly communicate location data. The quarter-sized tags also contain an accelerometer for measuring speed. The technology is sold by Chicago-based location tracking solutions company Zebra Technology.

Every NFL stadium has 20 receivers placed around the field for picking up the data coming off the RFID tags. The chips are sending out a wireless signal 25 times a second to these receivers. From there, that data takes 120 milliseconds to get beamed to Zebra’s NFL command center’s server located in San Jose, California. And during games, the data is sent to broadcasters in under half a second..."



TUG Member
May 20, 2010
Reaction score
Somewhere, USA
Now all the NFL has to do is continue the momentum, and utilize 21st century technology to update their woefully outdated and inadequate helmets.

I'm a motorcycle racing enthusiast, and know from first hand experience that a rider can high side (flies through the air over the top of the handlebars) and land on their head on asphalt, only to jump up, run to their bike, and continue the race, moving at triple digit speeds!

Football players can run how fast?

I'm not suggesting motorcycle helmets for football players, but rather a 'meet in the middle' approach.

It blows my mind that we're dealing with concussions on such a regular basis when the helmets are so damned outdated!.

NFL, heres a tip: You've got the money, why not fix the problem?

1. A complete redesign of the football helmets. Hire Arai, Shoei or another top motorcycle helmet manufacturer to do the job. They've got the expertise, but you need to hire them.

2. Install decelerometer chips with banded RF transmitters in the helmets that are sending impact data to the sidelines, realtime.

3. Impacts are being recorded on the sideline, and logged. If a players helmet registers a hit level 3, for example, the player is called in for evaluation. Further, each impact is logged.

4. When the predetermined accumulation of hits has exceeded the helmet's ability to do it's job, the helmet is trashed and replaced.

For example, motorcycle helmets are designed to be replaced after one solid impact. Again, I'm not suggesting this for football helmets, or the game couldn't be played. However, with a redesign, no one can convince me we don't have the technology today to make the game safer.

Apparently the NFL hasn't yet had enough pain of payouts for injured players. You can pay now, NFL, or you can pay later. Why not do the right thing??

Last edited:

x3 skier

TUG Review Crew: Veteran
TUG Member
Apr 17, 2006
Reaction score
Ohio and Colorado
Resorts Owned
Steamboat Grand, The West,
Raintree and, formerly, The Allen House
Doesn't sound like anything is "changing" except generating more useless statistics to take up more airtime and blather during broadcasts and sports shows.