Nationwide Insurance teams up with the NFL as an official sponsor

The Columbus-based insurance company named a founding sponsor of NFL Now digital video service.

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Nationwide Insurance announced today that it signed a three-year agreement with the National Football League (NFL) to become an official insurance sponsor of the league. The relationship kicks off this season and will run through the 2016 season.

For the complete release, click here.

Why Do We Love Football?

nfl logo

“Together We Make Football” Contest Asks Fans to Share Why They Love the Game

National Campaign to Culminate in NFL Films Special and Once-In-A-Lifetime Trip to Super Bowl for Two Winners – One Individual and One Group

The National Football League has launched TOGETHER WE MAKE FOOTBALL, an invitation to anyone who has been touched by the game of football – whether as a player at any level, a fan, a group, a team or a community – to share a story of why they love the game. The campaign will unfold across multiple platforms throughout the NFL season, culminating in a nationally televised NFL Films special that will air on NBC on Super Bowl Sunday.

For the complete release, click here.

“2014 NFL Kickoff Presented By XBOX” To Celebrate Start of The NFL Season and Seattle Seahawks Super Bowl Championship Thursday, September 4

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The NFL kicks off its 95th season with “2014 NFL KICKOFF PRESENTED BY XBOX” – 7:30 PM ET Thursday, September 4.  Grammy Award-winning singer, song-writer and producer PHARRELL WILLIAMS will perform live outside of CenturyLink Field in Seattle, it was announced Sunday night during NBC’s national broadcast of the annual NFL/Hall of Fame Game.

For the complete release, click here.

NFL Network’s ‘Inside Training Camp Live’ – Monday, August 4

Steve Mariucci Live at Packers Training Camp

Marshall Faulk Live at Saints Training Camp

Mike Mayock Live at Patriots, Redskins Scrimmage

‘NFL Total Access’ & ‘Training Camp Primetime’ Wrap Up Coverage

NFL Network’s Inside Training Camp Live continues Monday, August 4 at 10:00 AM ET featuring live coverage of Green Bay Packers and New Orleans Saints practices.

At 7:00 PM ET, co-hosts Amber Theoharis & Dan Hellie and analysts Willie McGinest and Heath Evans recap all of the day’s action on NFL Total Access, followed by Training Camp Primetime at 8:00 PM ET with Brian Billick, Willie McGinest and host Scott Hanson.

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NFL Network’s ‘Inside Training Camp Live’ – Saturday, August 2

Brian Baldinger & Ian Rapoport at Saints

 Solomon Wilcots & Aditi Kinkhabwala at Browns

 Charley Casserly at Texans, Omar Ruiz at Chiefs

 ‘NFL Total Access’ & ‘Training Camp Primetime’ Wrap Up Coverage

NFL Network’s Inside Training Camp Live continues Friday, August 1 at 10:00 AM ET.

NFL Network will air six hours of live coverage from Canton, Ohio – Including the Pro Football Enshrinement Ceremony – beginning at 4:00 PM ET on Saturday, August 2. For more information on the show and all of NFL Network’s Hall of Fame Coverage, read more here: on.nfl.com/1s7cByL.

At 10:00 PM ET, host Amber Theoharis and Dan Hellie and analysts Willie McGinest and Heath Evans recap all of the Hall of Fame coverage on NFL Total Access.

Training Camp Primetime will return on Monday, August 4.

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Pro Football Hall of Famers Cris Carter and Michael Irvin — NFL National Conference Call — Pro Bowl Alumni Captains Announced

On how playing in past Pro Bowls will compare to being a captain in the upcoming Pro Bowl and what strategy they will use to draft players:

Cris Carter: It’s a great honor to be associated with the National Football League. For them to give us the responsibility with their best players [is great]. Michael and I go back a long way and we have a lot of years that we made the Pro Bowl together. And if he wasn’t playing when I was playing, I would have made more. And vice versa.

We always took it seriously. I think there is some type of strategy to it. Number one is it is a competitive game. You can see that in last year’s game.

And if guys are a little bit older in the tooth and everything, sometimes they might not want to participate in the Pro Bowl like the young guys so I might take that into consideration when I’m drafting guys, because guys who make it their first or second year — they have a lot more excitement. So I’m not going to bring in my total strategy, but that might partake in it — a guy’s age.

Michael Irvin: Yes, and I think he might of just given up too much right there.

The older guys are saying, you know, “Hey, we’re going to chill. We’re going to chill.” My thoughts were, “No, I can’t chill, I have to show people that I’m ready to play.”

But I also remember all of the older guys that say, “Hey, we’re going to chill. We’re going to chill.” That was just rhetoric. They came out playing when it was time, and especially in that fourth quarter. So you want to consider all of those things. But what Cris also points to is we add five or six guys each year that I said, “All right, I’m out to beat him, beat him, and beat him. Make sure I’m in the Pro Bowl.”

We had five guys in the NFC that I’m worried about. Now [the new format] opens it up because it may have been a one time the shot in the NFC. I like this format because it gives you an opportunity now at your division. Like we were with Cris Carter, Jerry Rice, myself, Herman Moore, Andre Rison. It gives you an opportunity now to measure up against the AFC guys and still get in.

Carter: And the hardest strategy is that the draft, there are going to be the wide receivers who we have to pick – because they’re going to take it personally if we don’t draft them.

Irvin: And that’s what’s going to make it fun also.

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NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell – Media Availability at Hall of Fame

NFL COMMISSIONER ROGER GOODELL
2014 HALL OF FAME FESTIVITIES – CANTON, OHIO
AUGUST 1, 2014

On how excited are you for the Hall of Fame weekend:

This is a great weekend, which I told the Hall of Famers this morning. Not just because you get to spend time with the Hall of Famers, and we celebrate their great contribution to the game, but also inducting a new class, and we have a great new class. But it’s also a sign the NFL season is starting soon and that’s exciting for all of us.

On the details regarding the Ray Rice situation that ultimately decided the two-game suspension:

Our policy is clear on this. We have a very firm policy that domestic violence is not acceptable in the NFL and that there will be consequences for that.  When we’re going through the process of evaluating the issue and whether there will be discipline, you look at all of the facts that you have available to us. Law enforcement normally has more – on a normal basis – has more information, facts, than we have. We’ll get as much as we possibly can. And then you also have the opportunity to sit down with the individual, and maybe others, to determine how that individual is reacting to it. I think what’s important here is that Ray has taken responsibility for this. He’s been accountable for his actions. He recognizes he made a horrible mistake, that it is unacceptable, by his standards and by our standards. And he’s got to work to re-establish himself. The criminal justice system, as you know, put him in a diversionary program with no discipline, and we felt it was appropriate to have discipline, and to continue counseling programs and to continue our education work. And I was also very impressed with Ray in the sense that Ray not only is accepting this issue, and saying how it was wrong, but he’s saying “I want to make a powerful difference in this area.” I think you heard from him yesterday. He is a young man that really understands the mistake he made and he is out and about and determined to make a positive difference.

On reactions to the Rice suspension from the public:

When we make decisions we always get reactions. We understand that, we listen to it, and we use it to make ourselves better. We’re comfortable with that and we understand that.

On the precedent that prior suspensions set in making decisions:

We have to remain consistent. We can’t just make up the discipline, it has to be consistent with other cases, and it was in this manner.

On criticism of the suspension based on the NFL’s drug-related suspensions:

You have to deal with the facts. We have a drug program that is collectively bargained and it has a step process. It takes four incidents before you actually reach a suspension in a drug-related case. You have to respond to facts here. You have a lot of people voicing their opinions, but what you have to understand is that this is a young man who made a terrible mistake – it’s inconsistent with what we’re all about. We have dealt with it in a serious manner, and we’re very confident that this young man understands where he is and what he needs to do going forward.

On the Josh Gordon case and any extenuating circumstances surrounding it:

Well there’s a process that he’s going through right now. An appeal is actually being heard today. They’ll make a decision based on the information that is exchanged today.

On consistency in punishment:

Ray Rice did not have another incident. There were several cases, as you know, and a series of incidents in other cases and we take that into account. If it is a first offense and someone has had a strong background of being responsible in the community, doing the right things, not violating either policies or anything else that would reflect poorly on the NFL, then we take that into account. When there is a pattern, we also take that into account on the other side.

On Buffalo Bills sale process:

I’ll be getting an update next week. But we’ve obviously had first bids that were submitted this week. They are moving into the second phase, exchanging more information with all of the candidates. I do not know how many people remain in that process. That’s not something I may ever know. It seems like it’s proceeding on a normal basis.

On his thoughts regarding only three bidders:

I don’t know if there are only three bidders. Do you know that?

On if talking to Ray Rice’s wife reduced the suspension:

No. I take into account all the information before I make a decision on what the discipline will be. In this case there was no discipline taken by the criminal justice system – they placed him in a diversionary program. I had seen Ray after that and I had the opportunity to hear from him, hear from his wife and hear from other people he had brought into the hearing process and I put all that together to make the decision.

On whether there are facts the media does not know about that led to a two-game suspension for Rice:

I had the opportunity as the commissioner to hear directly from him. That is helpful and it is important for me to be able to do that. What I want to see are success stories. I want to see people when they make mistakes, see them take responsibility, be accountable and make a difference going forward. I hope that is what Ray Rice is going to do.

On the future direction of the Hall of Fame and David Baker’s leadership:

I am excited. I have known David [Baker] for 15 years. I have had the opportunity to work with him with the Arena Football League. When this position became available, he was an outstanding candidate. He has a great vision but he also knows how to make it happen. We are excited about that.

On whether the league will do more to bring awareness to and support domestic violence victims:

Yes, but not only in domestic violence issues but other issues that we think are important for the league to support.

On what he knows about the Josh Gordon situation:

Josh is going through the process right now. I am not a part of that process. At some point in time, I may have an opportunity to be involved. When I am, I look forward to meeting with him.

On the FCC and blackouts:

The FCC has said that they are considering views on this issue. They have it on the table and they are discussing whether they will make a decision sometime possibly this fall. What we are trying to do is keep the program in place because it has worked for several decades. We are the only sport on free television and we believe that staying on free television is good for consumers. There are 60 million people and growing, including a lot of minorities, that are watching NFL football on free television and we want to keep it that way. We are concerned that a change in this area, we are 99 percent sold out, so it has very little impact on our business, but it could have an impact on the overall business model for free television. We think that’s devastating to our consumers and consumers in general.

On disciplining players mentioned in the Ted Wells Report:

There are different issues with different individuals. The bottom line is everything is proceeding and they are doing everything they have been asked to do. We will make individual decisions, if necessary, with any one of those individuals.

On the chances discipline could occur before the start of the season:

It’s a broad issue. I would say the one person that has been very responsive and gone through the program is Richie Incognito. We are working with his people and monitoring his progress and it’s gone well.

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NFL Network’s ‘Inside Training Camp Live’ – Friday, August 1

Steve Mariucci with Raiders HC Dennis Allen & QB Matt Schaub

 Live Footage of Hall of Fame DE Michael Strahan’s Press Conference

 Daniel Jeremiah at Jaguars Camp

 Charley Casserly at Miami Dolphins

 ‘NFL Total Access’ & ‘Training Camp Primetime’ Wrap Up Coverage

NFL Network’s Inside Training Camp Live continues Friday, August 1 at 10:00 AM ET.

At 7:00 PM ET, host Amber Theoharis and Dan Hellie and analysts Willie McGinest and Heath Evans recap all of the day’s action on NFL Total Access.

Training Camp Primetime will not air on Friday. In its place, for the first time exclusively on NFL Network, the Gold Jackets Ceremony on Hall of Fame Friday Night which is which will air at 9:00 PM ET on Friday, August 1. For more information on the show and all of NFL Network’s Hall of Fame Coverage, read more here: on.nfl.com/1s7cByL.

Training Camp Primetime will return on Monday, August 4.

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NFL Network’s Friday and Saturday Coverage of 2014 Pro Football Hall of Fame Weekend

Exclusive Coverage of ‘Hall of Fame Friday Night’ on Friday at 9:00 PM ET

Six Hours of Live Coverage from Canton on Saturday – Including the ‘2014 Pro Football Enshrinement Ceremony’ – Begins at 4:00 PM ET

Featuring exclusive coverage of ‘Hall of Fame Friday Night’ and six live hours of programming on Saturday, NFL Network is the only place to get complete coverage of the 2014 Pro Football Hall of Fame weekend.

The 2014 Pro Football Hall of Fame Class features the first punter ever elected into the Hall of Fame, Ray Guy as well as Derrick Brooks, Claude Humphrey, Walter Jones, Andre Reed, Michael Strahan, and Aeneas Williams. A contingent of over 100 Hall of Fame legends will participate in the enshrinement ceremony to celebrate the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s 51st anniversary.

NFL Network’s programming leading up to the 2014 Pro Football Hall of Fame Enshrinement Ceremony is highlighted by:

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National Football League and Zebra Technologies to Provide ‘Next Gen Stats’ for the 2014 Season

The National Football League announced today that it will install Zebra Technologies’ real-time location system (RTLS) for sports in 17 stadiums during the 2014 NFL season.  This innovative technology will track players and officials, providing location based data known as “Next Gen Stats” to fans.

Zebra receivers installed throughout the stadium will communicate with radio-frequency identification (RFID) transmitters placed inside the shoulder pads of each player to capture precise location measurements, in real-time, during the game.  Zebra’s technology will collect data such as position, speed, and distance that will be registered and compiled into a database.  This data can then be outputted to generate new experiences built around this additional data.

ZebraTech pictureFor the first time, this technology enables the NFL to accurately capture real-time player tracking statistics, such as acceleration and total distance run.  The real-time nature of these statistics enables end-users to gain immediate insight into the action on the field.

“Working with Zebra will give fans, teams, coaches and players a deeper look into the game they love,” said Vishal Shah, NFL Vice President of Media Strategy. “Zebra’s tracking technology will help teams to evolve training, scouting and evaluation through increased knowledge of player performance, as well as provide ways for our teams and partners to enhance the fan experience.”

“Zebra’s legacy of providing visibility solutions to a variety of industries gives us extensive knowledge in how to collect important real-time data that helps organizations make smarter decisions – we call this enterprise asset intelligence,” said Anders Gustafsson, chief executive officer of Zebra Technologies. “It’s exciting to partner with an innovator like the NFL, where we will provide real-time data and information to coaches, broadcasters and fans to enrich the game experience.”

This partnership is an evolution of the NFL’s initiative to test player tracking in-game, and will be the broadest deployment of a system to date.  Zebra’s sports solution will be installed in the 15 stadiums that host Thursday Night Football games (Atlanta, Baltimore, Carolina, Chicago, Cincinnati, Denver, Green Bay, Houston, Jacksonville, Miami, New England, Oakland, San Francisco, St. Louis, Washington) as well as Detroit and New Orleans, and will capture information from all 32 teams.

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About Zebra Technologies

A global leader respected for innovation and reliability, Zebra Technologies Corporation (NASDAQ: ZBRA) offers technologies that give a virtual voice to an organization’s assets, people and transactions, enabling organizations to unlock greater business value. The company’s extensive portfolio of marking and printing technologies, including RFID and real-time locating systems, illuminates mission-critical information to help customers take smarter business actions. For more information about Zebra’s sports solutions, visit www.zebra.com and follow Zebra Sports @ZebraSports