RFID Chip on NFL

Football season is fast approaching. While several Surgo Group team members will decide who to draft to their fantasy teams, others eagerly await the festivities that go with Sunday Football.

However, one small piece of technology that is going to change how fantasy teams are drafted this season, the RFID chip. After a small run last season, the NFL will equip every player in the league with a chip, which measures the speed, distance, and direction travelled by each player in real-time. These stats will provide a whole new level of insights into the sport for both fans and front offices.

With most TV time taken up by the quarterback and his subsequent throws of the ball – these RFID chips will provide insight into all the other plays going on to make that one play possible. By analyzing the exact movements that create a game-changing interception or fumble recovery, turnovers become dramatic. However, even the smaller plays can be credited to smart positioning and disciplined training. In all aspects of the game, adding more coverage adds more excitement.

The chips will triangulate player position to within six inches, only have to be installed once and will last the whole season. This data will be available to fans via the NFL 2015 app (in a section called Next Gen Stats) on Xbox One and Windows 10 devices. Each player is turned into an avatar and replays are made available on the app as soon as they’re placed on NFL.com. The app will be available in late August, just in time for week three of the preseason.

Any investment in data by a corporation the size of the NFL is interesting to see and track, especially when the results are made accessible to the end consumers.  New individual player stats will likely emerge for positions that are not as trackable with the current viewing/replay options; such as the impact players on the offensive line.  With the RFID chips, commentary can revert back to athletes agility, speed and power. And perhaps the new data and visuals will motivate younger athletes to train a little harder, fans to cheer a little louder, and fantasy teams to strategize a little longer.

With the “Deflategate” story drawing a good deal of attention this postseason (with notable inflections in searcher interest showing some fatigue of the story), fans will enjoy getting back to the game and appreciating athleticism in a new way this fall; especially if the technology works as seamlessly as it is being touted.

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