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NFL Players To Use Tablet Computers During Games

samzenpus posted about 2 months ago | from the angry-birds-penalty dept.

Microsoft 107

An anonymous reader writes A $400 million partnership between the NFL and Microsoft that replaces the old method of studying opponents from the sidelines using printed black-and-white photos with tablet computers is just one of the hi-tech upgrades to the NFL this year. From the article: "The referees are also going wireless so they can talk with each other without huddling, and coaches will sport new Bose headsets. But the appearance of Microsoft Surface tablets marks the first time players and coaches can legally use such electronic devices on the field during the game. The tablets will come into play for the first time Sunday night, when the New York Giants and Buffalo Bills play in the Hall of Fame Game in Canton, Ohio."

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How long before ... (3, Interesting)

vlad30 (44644) | about 2 months ago | (#47597971)

they are hacked/cracked and the outcome of the game is changed

Re:How long before ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47598011)

is that a challenge?

Re:How long before ... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47598163)

At the New England Patriots opening game would be my guess.

Re:How long before ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47598307)

Not until the first Bill Belichick game.

Re: How long before ... (2)

jrumney (197329) | about 2 months ago | (#47598857)

It would just be another sponsorship opportunity for them. McAfee "sport" wireless security on Microsoft Surface tablets while you converse on your Bose headsets. IT is the new tobacco.

Re: How long before ... (1)

jmac_the_man (1612215) | about 2 months ago | (#47599243)

The headsets have been a Motorola sponsorship for a while

Re:How long before ... (1)

i kan reed (749298) | about 2 months ago | (#47599011)

Ha, the trick is that they're not changing anything important. These are placement ads.

Return to sender User too dumb to use a computer (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47599237)

They don't even know that abomination isn't even football.

Re:How long before ... (1)

acoustix (123925) | about 2 months ago | (#47599303)

How long before fans start jamming the wireless spectrum needed for the tablets to work? Previously it was hard wired.

And yes, it will probably be at a Patriots game.

Re:How long before ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47601097)

Get ready to here announcer say "on the surface this seemed like a good idea"

Re:How long before ... (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about 2 months ago | (#47601609)

Fortunately, in the NFS, as proof against such efforts the outcome of the game is decided long in advance, and implemented using the best referees money can buy

American football (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47597997)

a game for accountants...

Re:American football (1, Insightful)

jonwil (467024) | about 2 months ago | (#47598027)

I will never understand that game, here in Australia sports players dont wear padding and helmets and dont need the coach (or electronic gizmos) to tell them how to play or where to move.

Re:American football (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47598069)

You Ozzies just aren't sportsing hard enough.

Re:American football (1)

martin-boundary (547041) | about 2 months ago | (#47598191)

Let me tell you something, Mate. We Aussies don't do sportsing anymore, we do sporties. 'Cause in Oz, it's all about rooting for your favourite team.

Re:American football (3, Funny)

pinzvidz (3520933) | about 2 months ago | (#47598227)

You'll confuse the fuck out of 'em mate, it's "favorite". ;)

Re:American football (0)

Bing Tsher E (943915) | about 2 months ago | (#47598393)

You confuse us. When the two of you mate, what does the offspring look like?

Re:American football (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47598881)

Umm, the mailman?

Re:American football (1)

parkinglot777 (2563877) | about 2 months ago | (#47598929)

it's "favorite"

I guess. If you are an American, the word is spelled that way (or for British English, it would be 'spelt'). If you are talking about British English, he spelled (or spelt) it correctly -- favourite.

Re:American football (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47599327)

Whoush.

Re:American football (1)

DiamondGeezer (872237) | about 2 months ago | (#47598233)

'Cause in Oz, it's all about rooting for your favourite team

Most Aussies root because they can and they must.

Re:American football (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about 2 months ago | (#47598615)

I'm curious, am I supposed to pronounce the superfluous vowels that Australians put in words like "favourite" or "colour"?

I've tried it and it's kind of fun, but people tend to look at me strange.

I think I've decided that I don't really believe in silent letters, so from now on, I'm pronouncing everything.

Re:American football (1)

ArcadeMan (2766669) | about 2 months ago | (#47598717)

Really, you're pronouncing everything? How does the two "L" in really and the two "T" in letters sound like?

Re:American football (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47598835)

I would like to know what does the "h" sound in the words "hour" or "honesty". If he answers you, can you forward him that question, please?

Re:American football (1)

Qzukk (229616) | about 2 months ago | (#47600721)

Just like honey, I assume.

Re:American football (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about 2 months ago | (#47598887)

How does the two "L" in really and the two "T" in letters sound like?

Just like you think it would. It sounds like I have a neurological disorder.

Re:American football (1)

ArcadeMan (2766669) | about 2 months ago | (#47599003)

Well, at least I'm an orange.

Re: American football (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47599043)

Real lee
Let ters

Enunciate and you can figure it out all by yourself. *really*

Re:American football (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47598803)

Ha, that won't last two Hours, you Gnome. People will qUEUE up to hear you make a fool of yourself.

Re:American football (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47598841)

I think the Ozzies removed the 'u' in some of those words. They have the Labor Party as one of their 2 major parties.

I come from across the ditch where we still have a U in labour and honour

I think the Ozzies still spell aluminium correctly though.

Re: American football (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47598943)

Regarding aluminum vs aluminium: they are different words. Different pronunciations, different roots.

Re:American football (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47598073)

I am pretty sure that even in australian sports, the coach tells the players how to move and what to play. The coach just doesn't have the obvious opportunity to do so before every play. I used to play team handball for 20 years, and at least at adult level, we always used to exercise certain plays that would be called during the game, either by to coach or the center player, and other team sports do just the same thing.

As for the padding, you always play like your equipment allows you to play. If australian football players would play like american football players, half of them would have broken bones (most collarbones, probably) or concussions at the end of the match. You simply can't compare the two, but it's always fun to feel superior, right?

Re:American football (1)

jonwil (467024) | about 2 months ago | (#47598093)

True on the padding, just look at the kind of injuries various Rugby League players are suffering and the pressure to change the rules to prevent such collisions.

Re:American football (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47599157)

I will never understand that game, here in Australia sports players dont wear padding and helmets and dont need the coach (or electronic gizmos) to tell them how to play or where to move.

American football is a lot more strategic/tactical then rugby or Aussie Rules. They have pretty much plan their plays and execute them as to the book as they can. Each play is preplanned and that is why a 60 minute game takes 3 hours to play (and apparently the ball is in play only 11 minutes of that game time - and they call soccer boring). Anyone can tackle anyone too and because most of the guys are pretty big, they need the padding to protect themselves (even though they do tend to suffer neck injuries a lot).

Rugby (especially union) is a lot more fluid in it's play style. Players do often have a overarching strategy but most of the time they make it up as they go. The ball is in play for most of the match (game time for union and league is 2 x 40 minute halves). You can only tackle the guy with the ball with some fairly strict rules which helps limit the amount of damage to players, ie. if you have the ball, prepare yourself for people to tackle you...

Re: American football (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47599785)

The injury rate is much much higher in Rugby than in American football.

Re: American football (1)

tomhath (637240) | about 2 months ago | (#47599939)

They should wear helmets.

Re:American football (1)

myth24601 (893486) | about 2 months ago | (#47601761)

In American Football, you can't tackle anyone, there are rules but generally, you can only tackle the guy who has the ball but blocking is allowed so that leads to lots of hits.

Re:American football (1)

s122604 (1018036) | about 2 months ago | (#47599979)

Because austrialian rules football isn't anywhere nearly as complicated..., and the start/stop, line of scrimage concept in American football renders it much more dangerous, things like padding and helmets were added because a not so insignificant number of people were dying playing the game (as opposed to just slowly turning their brains to mush, which is apparently more acceptable).
but other than that, yah you totally have a point

Re:American football (1)

mythosaz (572040) | about 2 months ago | (#47600583)

The other side of the argument is that if you put pads and helmets on people, they can hit each other harder.

The number of superficial injuries drop, but the debilitating injuries rise.

Re:American football (2, Funny)

Imsdal (930595) | about 2 months ago | (#47598301)

American football combines the worst aspects of American society: committee meetings and violence.

Re:American football (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about 2 months ago | (#47598589)

I wonder who will be the first football players caught watching porn.

Or maybe youtube videos of his teammates beating up their girlfriends.

Re:American football (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47598377)

NFL Players to use tablets during the game? I know they have to stop for rest breaks every 10 seconds, and half the team substitutes the other half every 10 minutes to stop them getting any exercise, but where do they keep the tablet while they're 'playing'?

Brandon Marshall (1)

MouseTheLuckyDog (2752443) | about 2 months ago | (#47598009)

Already uses an ipad to keeep videos iof various other wide receivers.
A local news show reported on it.

Re:Brandon Marshall (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47598071)

up until now, however, use of such electronics or computers was not allowed at games.. with the exception of the headsets for communications between sidelines and coaches booth, and actual real photographs taken 'upstairs' then delivered to sidelines.

Re:Brandon Marshall (0)

Bazman (4849) | about 2 months ago | (#47598285)

I can't hear the phrase "wide receiver" without thinking of goatse...

Re:Brandon Marshall (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about 2 months ago | (#47598575)

That reminds me. Did you see those mysterious craters in Siberia?

Push vs pull (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47598029)

Pull: NFL wants something, shops around, buys a product
Push: Microsoft wants to promote something, shops around, finds someone to 'buy' it (in the sense its called a partnership and the balance of money transfers will result in Microsoft paying out).

So this $400 million partnership is unlikely to be $400 million, given its a few sideline cameras and a couple of dozen surface tablets. More likely it's a $40 million sponsorship deal for the NFL to promote Microsoft Surface Tablets.

Re:Push vs pull (2)

ruir (2709173) | about 2 months ago | (#47598157)

I wonder how many of them will be using iPads secretly, kinda like in corporations where they have their Windows issued crap-mobile, and the iPhone on the side.

Re:Push vs pull (2)

hibiki_r (649814) | about 2 months ago | (#47599263)

Many, if not all NFL teams, already issue ipads to players to hold the playbook and film clips: Before you had to hand players tapes every week, and update the playbook, which used to be a big binder where you had to switch pages in and out.

What they are talking about replaces the binders with pictures of previous plays that you can see quarterbacks check on any TV broadcast. I guess that now that it's digitized, instead of stills, they'll get a video feed from the all-22 camera, and some way for the offensive coordinator, up above, to send bookmarks to the players on the side of the field.

Re:Push vs pull (1)

benjymouse (756774) | about 2 months ago | (#47600035)

I guess that now that it's digitized, instead of stills, they'll get a video feed from the all-22 camera, and some way for the offensive coordinator, up above, to send bookmarks to the players on the side of the field.

It was a specific requirement from NFL that the tablets will *only* display stills. The tablets can be used instead of the present fax/photos. They actually have fax machines printing black/white images.

The NFL prohibits use of open tablets and other forms of technological gadgets at the sideline. The reason they give is that the team with the best *players* and team dynamics should win the game, not the team with the best *technology* (the reason why we don't like doping either: We want the best athlete to win, not the athlete with the best doctor).

Today the sideline photos are the only images the coaches and players are allowed to use during the match. The new tablets streamlines the delivery of those photos, nothing more.

The Surface tablets will be locked down with no 3rd party apps, no Internet connection and can only be used to view the same images as is already distributed using the fax devices. Specifically *no video* as that would create an unfair advantage for a team adopting the new tablets over a team which chooses to continue using the fax distribution.

Re:Push vs pull (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47601035)

have fun using a stylus on those shit ass iPads...

NFL and Microsoft, lol? (5, Funny)

Dan Askme (2895283) | about 2 months ago | (#47598111)

Next year in NFL:
- Start is removed. The game starts when a player can run through 20 squares of pointlessness to find the same option.
- Ball is replaced with a square cube. Showing adverts from Microsoft
- NFL fans are now forced to upgrade their TV's to support StupidX 12.0. They cant watch it otherwise.

Oh i so could go on for a long time, but, dinners ready, and, i really couldnt give a shit about either company :)

Re:NFL and Microsoft, lol? (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47598581)

and we couldn't give a shit about you, Dan.

Re:NFL and Microsoft, lol? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47598691)

Oh i so could go on for a long time, but, dinners ready...

More like, "Ding! Fries are done." Generally speaking, trolls like you tend to work at the bottom of the labor pool.

Re:NFL and Microsoft, lol? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47598807)

Yard lines are not shown, unless you run to the corner of the playing field.

forget the tablets.. THIS is the news here... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47598161)

Xbox owners will also gain access to NFL Sunday Ticket, the league's package of out-of-market game telecasts that was previously available only to DirecTV satellite service subscribers

rip directv... and good riddance.

THIS is the news here...almost (1)

Overzeetop (214511) | about 2 months ago | (#47598251)

"a reported $400 million, five-year deal. That includes interactive content to help sell Xbox home video game consoles."

Yes, that's where the money comes into play. 25 tablets over 32 teams does not a $400M deal make, but throw in broadcasting rights and it starts to make sense. Except that it's not really an Xbox thing - you have to buy ST in order to stream through the Xbox. Kind of like HBO Go, except that the only place you can buy ST is DirecTV, so you're still stuck with the satco payment (unless you're in a select market that allows the direct purchase). And, like HBO Go, you can use a whole range of devices - not just Xbox - to stream.

Unless they're wrong in the article http://www.theverge.com/2014/8... [theverge.com] and the deal means a la carte no-sat-req'd subscriptions.

Re: THIS is the news here...almost (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47598631)

So did MS get $400million or did the NFL get that money?

And in Baseball News (1)

tquasar (1405457) | about 2 months ago | (#47598211)

Players now will use the new iGlove and the third base coach will b a Netgear R6250.... Play ball ! Sort of.

NFL team near you seeks "techie" (0)

globaljustin (574257) | about 2 months ago | (#47598213)

This is really awesome from a tech/biz perspective AND an employment perspective I hope y'all realize...

I can just picture the job descriptions from NFL teams (and college too of course)

> game programmer (to make their simulations)
> database coder (idk what they'd use to store play data from both practice and games to use for the simulations, and what language they'd use to call it and present it on the tablet, but figuring all this shit out...linking the data table of plays to the user's screen will take some work)
> "front end designer" (b/c i see so many of these job postings)
> you get the idea

lots of jobs in telling these rich assholes how to use their new tech stuff...

Re:NFL team near you seeks "techie" (1)

swb (14022) | about 2 months ago | (#47598263)

I think the major sports leagues are already more sophisticated than you think.

I read someplace that major league baseball has some kind of video database where you can call up any player and see them hit, field, etc. They're so obsessive about coding the video that they enter fan signs the cameras focus on.

Re:NFL team near you seeks "techie" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47598305)

Yeah I heard somewhere that major league baseball uses spy satellites to do market research. That's some sophisticated shit.

Re:NFL team near you seeks "techie" (1)

rmdingler (1955220) | about 2 months ago | (#47598771)

Aw crap!

The NFL will be laying off the 32 folks like my mom who run the aerial photographs down to the field.

Gotta run. I can tell by the tone of her footsteps on the stairs she's gonna be on one of those "Get a job" rants.

Re:NFL team near you seeks "techie" (1)

mythosaz (572040) | about 2 months ago | (#47600613)

Your mom is a fax machine? ...because that's how they send down the photos.

protesting downmods (1)

globaljustin (574257) | about 2 months ago | (#47601431)

how in the world could someone mod my comment a "troll"???

this has to be personal but i cant imagine someone taking the time...

honestly, my above comment may be, in your opinion, stupid...but it's just a genuine comment...I'm stoked for us to get good jobs

But what about open source? (0)

DiamondGeezer (872237) | about 2 months ago | (#47598241)

I mean, can Linux do this?

Re:But what about open source? (3, Funny)

stephanruby (542433) | about 2 months ago | (#47598567)

I mean, can Linux do this?

Pay 400 million dollars for the exposure? I doubt it. It was hard enough to pay for a single ad in the Wall Street Journal.

Bury the lede (4, Informative)

jamesl (106902) | about 2 months ago | (#47598311)

It's really about Xbox. From the linked article ...

Microsoft is getting some free TV advertising by outfitting the tablets with sky-blue cases clearly labeled "Surface." But Microsoft's main motivation is what the Redmond, Wash., company receives from its partnership with the NFL: a reported $400 million, five-year deal. That includes interactive content to help sell Xbox home video game consoles.

[ ... ]

When the regular season starts, Microsoft's Xbox Live network will offer services that include video feeds of game highlights and fantasy football data. Xbox owners will also gain access to NFL Sunday Ticket, the league's package of out-of-market game telecasts that was previously available only to DirecTV satellite service subscribers.

http://www.sfgate.com/technolo... [sfgate.com]

Re:Bury the lede (1)

Mr D from 63 (3395377) | about 2 months ago | (#47598437)

Sunday Ticket on Xbox is a big deal. I wonder what they will charge for it.

Re:Bury the lede (3, Funny)

Mr D from 63 (3395377) | about 2 months ago | (#47598491)

I wonder what they will charge for it.

Well, I've answered my own question... $200 to $300 bucks, and not only available on XBOX but other games and devices as well. But only to those who "qualify".

Re:Bury the lede (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47601061)

That's because the brand in Sunday Ticket is "NFL" not DirecTV. DirecTV has one year left to get customers (on their mandatory 2 year contract). I doubt the NFL is foolish enough to sign another exclusive contract limiting the customers they can reach. The NFL doesn't even want to go through Disney. They want to sell directly to the fans.

Bury the lede (1)

JohnConnor (587121) | about 2 months ago | (#47598467)

That's funny. I had not read the linked story and up to this point I had assumed that it was Microsoft that was paying $400M. What kind of a deal is that? Microsoft is getting a lot of publicity, telecast rights and video game content with a lot more money that a few thousand tablets should cost. Not to mention that their "market share" will seem to go up with this deal, which I'm sure they're desperate for at the moment.

Re:Bury the lede (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47598593)

Oh, and an excuse to shift some kit that nobody wanted in the first place. The article is pretty careful about not making explicit just who is paying for it all. Very slick deal for the tech giant, maybe not so much for the sport. Then again, I view this as much as sport as that companion "sport", cheerleading. What kind of sport needs a companion sport to make the people watching get up and cheer? Both are all about the spectactle. And now that gets to be fully automated too. Next up: Robot spectators.

how long before players are booted (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47598481)

for posting stupid to twitter et al or surfing the 'net during the game..

So people can use technology (1)

rebelwarlock (1319465) | about 2 months ago | (#47598551)

I'm shocked, really. Tablets and wireless communication aren't exactly the pinnacle of human achievement right now. Get back to me when they do something innovative.

Re:So people can use technology (1)

necro81 (917438) | about 2 months ago | (#47598913)

Tablets and wireless communication aren't exactly the pinnacle of human achievement right now

You're tellin' me - I still think digital watches are a pretty neat idea [google.com] .

bad idea (2, Funny)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about 2 months ago | (#47598563)

NFL Players To Use Tablet Computers During Games

Won't they get broken with all the shoving and tackling? They better get some good screen protectors.

But you know who won't be using tablet computers during games? Hockey players. Because hockey players are the goddamn honey badgers of sport. Last year, a hockey player died on the friggin' bench, and they revived him and he went back into the game. Some player for Boston, the big Serb, I think, hooked a guy with his stick, on purpose, from behind right in the nuts and no penalty was called. Hockey players are some no-fuck-giving tough guys, and they won't be using tablet computers any time soon, except maybe to grab one out of a fan's hands to crack it over an opposing player's nose.

Re:bad idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47599381)

And thank heavens for that - it almost makes hockey interesting.

Re:bad idea (1)

Dragonslicer (991472) | about 2 months ago | (#47600687)

Minor correction: Rich Peverley hasn't played since his heart failure during the game in March. Rumor has it, though, that when he woke up in the hospital, he asked how much time was left in the period and wanted to get back on the ice.

Wow. (3, Funny)

grub (11606) | about 2 months ago | (#47598599)


Neat idea, but shouldn't they be concentrating on the game and not playing "Learning my ABCs with Mickey"?

Tabloids will go nuts (2)

ArcadeMan (2766669) | about 2 months ago | (#47598739)

A $400 million partnership between the NFL and Microsoft... coaches will sport new Bose headsets...

News flash! News flash!

Microsoft expected to buy Bose in order to counter the Apple-Beats deal!

NHL has used them for years (1)

mwn3d (2750695) | about 2 months ago | (#47598751)

You'll see coaches drawing up plays on them, players watching replays on them, even when they're not using them you can see them tucked away in a pocket on the bench showing the live broadcast. Not sure why the NFL has to be stuck with still pictures. I'm also not sure why the NFL has to use tablets to show those pictures when they could just print the HD color pictures. And doesn't $400M seem like a bit much? Ramble ramble ramble ramble....

Re:NHL has used them for years (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47599133)

For the NFL, their selling point is that the "sport" is all about skill vs skill. It should not be about stealing playbooks and knowing what your opponent is going to do before they do it.

Re:NHL has used them for years (1)

s122604 (1018036) | about 2 months ago | (#47600055)

400M is a bit much, but then again it's the NFL which is the most well run sport (in the business sense, ethically notsomuch) in the US and possibly the world.. They have more money than they know what to do with...

Finally!!! (2)

Trailer Trash (60756) | about 2 months ago | (#47598947)

Microsoft has sold more than one Surface tablet! This will show up in the annual report next year: "Somebody bought Surface tablets!"

One more reason to not watch NFL (2)

DaveM753 (844913) | about 2 months ago | (#47599239)

Could this be the year for Surface on the tablet??

This is so putrid. During every game this year, viewers are going to see a few scripted moments where a bunch of players/coaches will be standing around with their tablets and the TV commentators will discuss how marvelous/innovative the Surface tablets are. But during the rest of the game, watch closely: along the sidelines you will very rarely see anyone using their tablets

At some point during the season, a referee will make a controversial ruling after reviewing a replay using a Surface tablet (again, scripted moment).

But that's okay. I'll be watching not-the-NFL.

Re:One more reason to not watch NFL (1)

Nidi62 (1525137) | about 2 months ago | (#47599985)

But during the rest of the game, watch closely: along the sidelines you will very rarely see anyone using their tablets

Of course you won't, because right now you rarely see images of everyone looking at the photos anyway. But that's what these will be used for. If you are actually at a game, look at the sidelines and you will see an assistant coach by the bench holding a thick 3-ring binder. These binders hold photos taken from the coaches booth near the press box and show the other team in different alignments. With tablets allowed on the sidelines, instead of having someone run off a bunch of photos they can just be pushed to tablets on the sidelines. Depending on NFL rules they may even be able to push recordings as well. Players already spend hours each day watching film, if they could I am sure they would study film during the game as well. Since teams always tweak their game plan depending on the characteristics of their opponent, previous gamefilm can only tell so much.

And have you ever watched/attended a game and seen a large dry erase board on the sidelines? These are used to draw up or adjust plays on the fly. Generally the offensive or defensive coordinator will call down to an assistant and have them draw up the new play for the players to see. Using tablets the coordinator could draw up the new play himself and simply send it to the tablets the players have on the sideline. This could also allow for animated playback, showing the players how the coordinator wants the play to develop without having to draw more lines than John Madden having a stroke.

Then there is also the fact that for challenges the referees already use a hooded screen. They aren't going to be standing around in the middle of the field holding a tablet.

Re:One more reason to not watch NFL (1)

mythosaz (572040) | about 2 months ago | (#47600663)

I'm not sure what games you watch, but I see receives, ends and backs holding a dozen or so faxes stapled into a book after nearly every change of possession.

Maybe the camera crews on the B-game just like the sidelines more, or maybe you're just watching RedZone, I dunno - but skill players holding those packets of faxes is damned common.

Re:One more reason to not watch NFL (2)

31415926535897 (702314) | about 2 months ago | (#47600727)

They will get used a lot. I worked on the sidelines of the Bears one season and was amazed that they could only look at still photos (though if you flip through them, it practically looks like video).

This is a very natural progression to the game, and something that should have been done long ago. The whole MS/Surface/blah stuff is obviously marketing added on (why not if the nfl can make a buck or get a discount on the devices?). But I guarantee you that players will be glued to these things. Getting real-time film feedback is going to be huge, no matter who provides the technology.

Teams will still use paper (2)

tjhayes (517162) | about 2 months ago | (#47599245)

Remember that the NFL only permits teams to look at still images, they do not allow video. So even when using the tablet, they can only browse still images on it. The old paper print outs are still available and will be used 99%+ of the time anyway, because you can't see the tablet screen in bright sunlight.

The AFTER market ... (1)

CaptainDork (3678879) | about 2 months ago | (#47599285)

... is going to be those clipboards the coaches use to obstruct the view of their lips when they talk.

We don't want people with binoculars zooming in on the tablets, right?

that's one way to get rid of inventory (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47599525)

at least they can hide the fact they are paying out money AND giving away their devices instead of having to write off the loss publicly.

I wonder how many more deals like this they'll have to make to burn through the inventory of Microsoft tablets sitting in warehouses?

Football? Do you mean Head-Brick? (3, Funny)

Scottingham (2036128) | about 2 months ago | (#47599655)

I haven't heard of this 'football' sport. I think they're referring to Head-Brick: http://www.smbc-comics.com/?id... [smbc-comics.com]

screw the nfl (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47599745)

"partnership between the NFL and Microsoft"

well screw you too, then, NFL!

... and Failure (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47600051)

According the Bills coaching staffs, the Surface tablets crapped out halfway through the game. It's like the Sarah Palin of technology.

Re:... and Failure (1)

DaveM753 (844913) | about 2 months ago | (#47600219)

There's got to be a joke about Palin/Alaska/Freezing/Microsoft in here somewhere...

Gloves? (3, Interesting)

erp_consultant (2614861) | about 2 months ago | (#47600099)

Most of the NFL players wear gloves these days (aside from quarterbacks - but some of them use gloves too). Did anyone test if the tablets work when you are wearing gloves? Gloves that might have mud on them? Just sayin'

Outcome; (1)

kaatochacha (651922) | about 2 months ago | (#47600987)

Many broken surface tablets from frustration.
Sitting at home, comfortable, I've come perilously close to destroying my windows 8 tablet a few times. The annoyance factor is huge.
Unless it's an ap with a big "push me for more info" button

someone asked about a shoulder holster for a devic (1)

Trax3001BBS (2368736) | about 2 months ago | (#47601285)

Be it a cell phone or Camera, at first I and others found humor in the question, but the more I think bout it the more sense it makes.

Case in point, your not going to wear in on your waist during a football game. -My new phone I even asked for a shoulder holster for my new phone as it's large and prone to gravity thefts. Yes they found humor in it as well but I'll be looking for a nice comfortable one in the mean time.

wouldn't these have to be weatherproofed? (1)

pkinetics (549289) | about 2 months ago | (#47601523)

I'm just pondering a waterproof case and or something to keep them warm in the cold snowy climate games

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