The NFL, Comcast NBCUniversal and Mayo Clinic welcome submissions for 1st and Future—the NFL’s annual Super Bowl start-up competition designed to spur novel advancements in athlete safety and performance.


Additional details can be found here:


The deadline for submission has been extended to January 11, 2018.
Up to nine companies will be selected to compete in Minneapolis and one winner from each category will be selected by a panel of judges comprising former NFL players, entrepreneurs and medical experts. In addition to the opportunity to present their innovations, the winning team from each category will receive a $50,000 check from the NFL and two tickets to Super Bowl LII.

Here are the three submission categories:

Advancements in Protective Equipment

Objective: To identify innovations in football helmet technology, including but not limited to:

  • Quarterback-specific helmet innovations
    • Note: As part of the Engineering Roadmap, biomechanical engineers completed a comprehensive video review of all 459 reported concussions sustained in NFL games during the 2015 and 2016 seasons to better understand concussion-causing impacts. The results of this review identify potential opportunities to expand testing and evaluation of helmets, as well as potential injury countermeasure opportunities based on the prevalence of injury source and impact location. For example, this review found that nearly 40% of concussions sustained by NFL quarterbacks occurred when the rear of the player’s helmet impacted the ground.
  • New materials and innovations to better absorb or mitigate force

Technology to Improve Athletic Performance

Objective: To identify new technologies that will advance athlete health and performance at any level – from youth to amateur to professional athletes, specifically:

  • Products and applications which utilize Augmented Reality (AR) or Virtual Reality (VR) technology
  • New technologies which will further enhance the ability to collect, analyze and distribute a wide range of biometric data

New Therapies to Speed Recovery

Objective: To identify new technologies designed to improve care and accelerate recovery including, but not limited to:

  • Therapeutic cells and cell derived products that harness the power of the body’s ability to heal itself, to repair damaged tissues, reduce pain and inflammation, and restore function after an injury
  • The next generation of arthroscopic, fracture and ligament repair, and prosthetic devices that offer improved safety and efficacy compared with current standards of care
  • Digital therapies, from digitized cognitive assessment tests to in-home physical therapies, that can serve as alternatives or augment traditional therapies, to accelerate an athlete’s recovery

For additional details and to submit entries please visit:

See Official Rules for details. 1st and Future opened December 14, 2017.  Applications must be submitted by 11:59 p.m. (ET) on January 11, 2018. Proposals will be accepted from both public and private organizations.  All proposals must be able to articulate a path by which they will improve athlete safety and performance.

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