Instances of Scientific Misconduct

The NFL and Brain Injury Research

Sometimes grantees, researchers, and outside parties have varying biases and intentions when it comes to what is being studied. For example, The National Football League (NFL) was accused once of pressuring the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to cancel a grant that would have gone to a large football-related brain injury study. This gained media attention and many news publications wrote about the NFL’s inconsistencies regarding the care for their players & staff and the game of football. This grant money would have gone to a study looking at concussions and debilitating brain disease chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). This situation created major controversy as the NFL refused to acknowledge such accusations & allowed the public to feel connected to scientific research and its relation to such a popular game.

Despite evidence, skeptics try to cast doubt on CTE-football link (ESPN News, August 30, 2019)

Former NFL players: League concealed concussion risks (CNN, July 20, 2017)

How the NFL tried to manipulate a government study on football and brain injuries (The LA Times, May 23, 2016)

Investigation: NFL ‘improperly attempted to influence’ concussion research (USA Today, May 23, 2016)

NFL and CTE: Eagles react to horrifying brain injuries research (NJ, July 26, 2017)

N.F.L. to Spend $100 Million to Address Head Trauma (The New York Times, September 14, 2016)

NFL and NYT collide: did studies on concussion rates leave out necessary data? (Retraction Watch, May 25, 2016)

N.F.L. Tried to Influence Concussion Research, Congressional Study Finds (The New York Times, May 23, 2016)

NFL’s Flawed Concussion Research and Ties to Tobacco Industry (The New York Times, March 24, 2016)

NFL response to New York Times’ concussion research story (NFL, March 24, 2016)

NFL concussion injury litigation: complaint against the NFL (ESPN, July, 17, 2012)

NFL Board Paid $2M to Players While League Denied Football-Concussion Link (PBS, November 16, 2012)

Study Finds Evidence of Brain Injury in Living NFL Veterans (Scientific American)

The Doctor the NFL Tried to Silence (The Wall Street Journal, November 24, 2015)

The National Football League’s Attempt to Influence Funding Decisions at the National Institutes of Health (U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Energy and Commerce, May 23, 2016)

The NFL’s Response to Brain Trauma: A Brief History (The Atlantic, January 25, 2013)