NFL: Concussions down about 5%, masks limited flu cases
By admin - February 4, 2021

Jeff Miller, NFL executive vice president of communications, public affairs and policy, said Wednesday that 2020 is the third consecutive year when the NFL has had a reduction in concussions, or about 25% down from previous years. Here are the highlights:

  • “This is progress. This is not a success,” Miller said. “We will continue to implement our concussion reduction strategy again, focused on rules, the implementation of those rules and changes as necessary, refining how our players practice.”
  • The NFL is a game away from playing an entire season through the coronavirus pandemic, though Miller cautioned this season is not over until the Super Bowl is played Sunday in Tampa, Florida.
  • League officials gave an update on efforts to reach this game, including how the NFL found just how effective masks have been at protecting against more than just COVID-19.
  • “One of the side benefits, if you want to call it, is we had almost no influenza cases this year,” said Dr. Allen Sills, the NFL’s chief medical officer. “And that’s not true just in the NFL. That’s in medicine in general.”
  • Tampa’s mayor issued a mask mandate for Sunday’s game to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
  • Sills said people tend to focus on how the NFL tested for the virus daily and also used contact tracing, but using masks consistently was key.
  • “It’s not our belief,” Sills said. “Our data shows that that’s the key element to preventing transmission.”
  • Sills said the league had 262 cases of COVID-19 among players and 463 cases among coaches, staff and other personnel for an overall test positivity rate from Aug. 1 through the end of January of 0.08%. That’s well below the country’s positive rate and in almost all the league’s markets.
  • “That leads me to to make a statement that I think is something that all of us take pride in, and that is that we feel that our club facilities truly were some of the safest possible locations in those communities,” Sills said.
  • The latest positive results came Monday from tests conducted Sunday.