Zebra Technologies Extends NFL Analytics Contract

Tom Brady (Keith Allison)

Zebra Technologies Corporation, an innovator at the edge of the enterprise with solutions and partners that enable businesses to gain a performance edge, today announced the renewal of its partnership with the NFL, extending Zebra’s role as the League’s Official On-Field Player-Tracking Provider through the 2021 season. This extension builds on the past five seasons during which Zebra has worked with the NFL to successfully implement a best-in-class player and ball tracking system, helping to launch a new era of football data and analytics known as Next Gen Stats.

Zebra captures data for the NFL by attaching RFID tags in player equipment and the football, transmitting real-time location data to receivers positioned around the stadium. The Zebra MotionWorks™ Sport tracking system captures metrics such as player speed, distance traveled, orientation and proximity, and acceleration/deceleration. This information is then utilized by the NFL to calculate vast amounts of information about every player for every play.

The Next Gen Stats data is used to enhance the fan experience both at home as well as in-stadium. The data helps to convey unique, engaging details about individual and team performances, as well as season-long trends, allowing fans to understand the game in a whole new way. Used by everyone from the casual viewer to the fantasy football fanatic, these insights provide fans, media, and teams with helpful and interesting information for every game, every week, throughout the entire season.

“We are pleased to extend our relationship with Zebra to further develop and share cutting-edge insights into the game of football,” said Matt Swensson, Vice President of Emerging Products & Technology, National Football League. “We’re excited to build on our partnership, and collectively advance the League’s commitment to innovation. In the coming seasons, we plan to further develop the Next Gen Stats platform, allowing coaches, players, and fans to understand the game in ways never possible before.”

NFL Club personnel use Next Gen Stats data to inform a variety of decisions, from play design to player workload, and to formulate specific practice plans.

“We are very excited to continue our work with the NFL, and we are committed to ongoing innovation to provide the League, teams and fans with real-time tracking data and insights for years to come,” said John Pollard, Vice President of Zebra Sports Business Development, Zebra Technologies. “Based on our collaborative approach, this extension validates the value of our real-time locationing technology in football to give those on the front line a performance edge.”

Earlier this year, Gartner, Inc. recognized Zebra as a Visionary in the Magic Quadrant for Indoor Location Services, Global for the second consecutive year. Part of Zebra’s market leading locationing portfolio, the MotionWorks Sport solution is powered by Zebra’s Savanna data platform which transforms information into insights to help teams make the best possible decisions.

Authored by: Jerry Milani

Jerry Milani is a freelance writer and public relations executive living in Bloomfield, N.J. He has worked in P.R. for more than 25 years in college and conference sports media relations, two agencies and for the International Fight League, a team-based mixed martial arts league, and now is the PR manager for Wizard World, which runs pop culture and celebrity conventions across North America. Milani is also the play-by-play announcer for Caldwell University football and basketball broadcasts. He is a proud graduate of Fordham University and when not attending a Yankees, Rams or Cougars game can be reached at Jerry (at) JerryMilani (dot) com.

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