SBD/Closing Bell

GE, NFL, Under Armour Unveil Plans For Head Health Initiative

GE, the NFL and Under Armour today jointly unveiled plans for $60M of research into concussion prevention and diagnostic research called the Head Health Initiative. Speakers at the press conference in N.Y. included GE CEO Jeffrey Immelt, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, UA Founder, President & CEO Kevin Plank and NCAA President Mark Emmert. Several NFL owners also attended, including the Patriots’ Robert Kraft and Giants’ John Mara. Speaking afterward, Jets Owner Woody Johnson underscored the point of the research, saying, “We know a lot more about the heart and the other organs, we know very little about the brain, so trying to get objective data” is a start.

The research dollars are designed to speed evaluation and develop next generation imaging technologies to improve diagnosis that targets treatment therapy for patients with mild traumatic brain injury. That part of the project will get $40M. In addition, the NFL, GE and UA launched a two-year innovation challenge, offering up to $20M to bidders to research, better understand, diagnose and protect against mild traumatic brain injury. This element of the project has its own web site, NFLGEbrainresearch.com (Daniel Kaplan, Staff Writer).

Today's Yahoo Finance poll was related to the new initiative and asked, “Is the league doing enough to keep players safe?” At presstime, among 31,374 respondents, 51% said “Yes, but it will always be a brutal sport.” Another % said, “The league has been negligent.” 16% said “Players should take more responsibility and 14% said “America watches because its brutal” (FINANCE.YAHOO.com, 3/11).
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