Kelly, E. (2017). National Football League concussions from 2009 – 2015: A secondary data analysis. The Young Researcher, 1(1), 27-36.
In recent years, the National Football League (NFL) has made an effort to lower the prevalence of concussions, partially by enacting rule changes designed to limit contact to the head. This study aims to determine whether NFL rule changes from 2009 – 2015 have resulted in a decrease in the number of reported concussions through analyzing publicly available injury reports, which were compared with rule changes for each season. A second component of the study aims to determine whether teams are underreporting the number of concussions suffered by gathering concussion data for each team. This study found that there was a general increase in the number of concussions from 2009 – 2015 and it is not possible to determine whether rule changes are effective in decreasing head impact exposure. This study also found that certain teams reported a significantly low number of concussions throughout the years analyzed, and underreporting is likely occurring.
Keywords: concussion, underreporting, National Football League, rule changes