Football Ops

Football Ops

Protecting the integrity of the greatest game.

NFL Ops: Honoring the Game

It's our responsibility to strengthen the sport.

League Governance

Ensuring a consistent and fair game that is decided on the field, by the players.

Social Justice

NFL COVID-19 Protocols

NFL Rules Enforcement

Ensuring that players conduct themselves in a way that honors the sport and respects the game.

NFL Way to Play

Knees Bent. Pads Down. Head Up and Out.

The NFL and HBCUs

The NFL is proud of the HBCU professional football legacy.

Economic & Social Impact

Honoring the league’s commitment to serve the communities where the game is played.

The NFL Ops Team

Meet the people behind NFL Operations.

The Game

The Game

Learn about the people, the jobs and the technology that deliver the best game possible to NFL fans across the U.S. and around the world. 

Game Day: Behind the Scenes

Countdown to kickoff: how NFL games happen.

Game Day Assistants

See the NFL personnel at every game, what they do and you can identify them. 


In the NFL, balancing technology with tradition.

Impact of Television

How television has changed the game.

History of Instant Replay

Upon further review…

Creating the NFL Schedule

It takes hundreds of computers and five NFL executives to create the NFL’s 256-game masterpiece.

Big Data Bowl

The annual analytics contest explores statistical innovations in football — how the game is played and coached.

Youth Football

Promoting the values of football.

The Players

The Players

Learn how NFL players have changed over time, how they’re developed and drafted and how the league works with them after their playing days are over.  

Evolution of the NFL Player

Creating an NFL player: from “everyman” to “superman.”

Development Pipeline

Supporting the next generation of players and fans.

Getting Into the Game

Preparing players of all ages for success at football’s highest level.

The NFL Draft

Introducing the next wave of NFL superstars. 

NFL Player Engagement

A look at the programs and services NFL Player Engagement provides to assist every player before, during and after his football career.

NFL Legends Community

Strengthening the NFL brotherhood.

NFL Total Wellness

NFL Total Wellness assists players, Legends and their families before, during and after their playing experiences.

The Officials

The Officials

Discover the evolution of professional officiating, the weekly evaluation process and how the NFL identifies and develops the next generation of officials.

In Focus: History of the Official

“One thing hasn’t changed: the pressure. It will always be there.”

Inside NFL GameDay Central

The latest information from the NFL's officiating center.

These Officials Are Really Good

Every week, officials take the field ready to put months of preparation, training and hard work on display, knowing that the whole world — and the Officiating Department — is watching.

Officiating Development

Officiating an NFL game takes years of training and experience. 

The Rules

The Rules

NFL Football Operations protects the integrity of the game by ensuring that the rules and the officiating are consistent and fair to all competitors.

In Focus: Evolution of the NFL Rules

The custodians of football not only have protected its integrity, but have also revised its playing rules to protect the players, and to make the games fairer and more entertaining.

NFL Video Rulebook

The NFL Video Rulebook explains NFL rules with video examples.

2020 NFL Rulebook

Explore the official rules of the game.

2020 Rules Changes and Points of Emphasis

NFL Overtime Rules

Signals Intelligence

The NFL's familiar hand signals help fans better understand the game.   

NFL Tiebreaking Procedures

The NFL's procedures for breaking ties for postseason playoffs.

NFL Rules Digest

A quick reference guide to the NFL rulebook.

Football 101

Football 101

Terms Glossary

Sharpen your NFL football knowledge with this glossary of the game's fundamental terms. 

Formations 101

See where the players line up in pro football's most common offensive and defensive formations.

Quick Guide to NFL TV Graphics

Understand what the graphics on NFL television broadcasts mean and how they can help you get the most out of watching NFL games.

NFL Instant Replay Process

The NFL’s instant replay review process focuses on expediting instant replay reviews and ensuring consistency. Learn how it works.

Stats Central

Stats Central

Go inside the game with the NFL's official game stats. Sort the stats by season or by week.

The Extra Point

Welcome to the Extra Point, where members of the NFL's football data and analytics team will share updates on league-wide trends in football data, interesting visualizations that showcase innovative ways to use the league's data, and provide an inside look at how the NFL uses data-driven insight to improve and monitor player and team performance.

Chart The Data

Chart and compare the NFL Football Operations stats you're looking for with the NFL's data tool. 

Weekly Dashboard

Get a snapshot of the current NFL game stats, updated weekly during the regular season.

The NFL and NFL Players Association (NFLPA) released the results of their annual laboratory study to assess the performance of helmets worn by NFL players. The results of the tests are displayed on a poster and shared with NFL players, in addition to club medical, training, coaching and equipment staffs to help inform equipment choices.

Enlarge to see the full poster.

Enlarge to see the full poster.

The tests, designed jointly by NFL and NFLPA-appointed biomechanical engineers, simulate a subset of concussion-causing impacts sustained by NFL players during games to determine which helmets best reduced head impact severity in those conditions. The study continues to measure rotational velocity and acceleration as part of a combined metric to evaluate helmets.

​On the 2019 poster, the top-performing helmets in the laboratory testing are shown in a gradient of green, with darker green helmets performing better than lighter green helmets, and helmets in yellow performing worse than the green helmets. None of the 11 helmets tested this year were added to the list of prohibited helmets; however, those on the prohibited list* in 2018 remain as such, and no player will be grandfathered into being able to wear a prohibited helmet this season.

2019 Helmet Laboratory Testing Performance Results

The 2019 helmet poster includes the laboratory testing results for 34 helmet models, including the 11 helmets tested this year. Ninety-nine percent of NFL players wear helmet models tested in this study. Helmets that are listed in grey text on the poster were worn by fewer than 1% of all players. Six of the 11 helmets tested this year are among the top-10 rated models, signaling that industry-driven improvements in design, engineering and technology are yielding better results for reducing head impact severity in the tested conditions. All helmets tested met the current National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment (NOCSAE) certification standards to protect players against severe traumatic skull and brain injuries.

After issuing last year's poster, approximately 50% of NFL players upgraded to a better-performing helmet. The percentage of players wearing helmets in the top-performing (green) category increased by one-third to 74% of all players by the end of the 2018 season. Analysis of on-field game concussions for the 2015-2018 seasons showed that players wearing green helmets had a lower rate of reported concussions than those wearing yellow or red helmets. As of the final week of the 2018 season, only 32 players (less than 2% of total players) remained in one of the prohibited helmets.

The tests were conducted by an independent helmet testing laboratory, Biokinetics Inc. of Ottawa, Canada. An independent biostatistician was retained to assist in the analysis of the data. Results were reviewed by NFL Chief Medical Officer Dr. Allen Sills and by NFLPA Medical Director Dr. Thom Mayer.

The experimental design and data analysis were performed by NFL-appointed consultants, including Dr. Jeff Crandall, Director of the Center for Applied Biomechanics at the University of Virginia and Chairman of the NFL Engineering Committee; Dr. Ann Good, Senior Mechanical Engineer for Biocore; and Dr. James Funk, Principal Engineering Consultant and Co-Founder of Biocore and Scientific Coordinator of the NFL Head, Neck, and Spine Engineering Subcommittee. The analysis was done in conjunction with two NFLPA-appointed consultants, Dr. Barry Myers, Professor of Biomedical Engineering at Duke University, and Dr. Kristy Arbogast, Co-Scientific Director of the Center for Injury Research and Prevention at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia and Professor of Pediatrics at University of Pennsylvania. An independent biostatistician, Dr. Timothy McMurry, Assistant Professor of Biomechanics at the University of Virginia's Department of Public Health Sciences, was retained to help with analysis of the data.

Note: The results of this study should not be extrapolated beyond the NFL, including to collegiate, high school or youth football.

*A subset of prohibited models were displayed on the 2018 poster. This year, all models prohibited in 2018 are displayed on the 2019 poster, including those not tested but produced by companies no longer manufacturing football helmets. The prohibited helmets perform poorly in laboratory testing, have been discontinued by the manufacturer, or were produced by companies no longer manufacturing football helmets.