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NFL Beats Its Toughest Opponent with Sunscreen

by kelly / September, 5 2018 01:30

Photo of an NFL football on a field

Professional football players maybe the toughest on the field but they are no match for the sun when they are out on the field all day practicing – it can take a toll on their skin. That’s why the NFL and its players teamed up with the American Cancer Society and love sunscreen! They know it’s their best weapon to prevent sun damage and skin cancer.

Free Sunscreen at NFL Camps

This summer the NFL and American Cancer Society partnered up to launch their "Crucial Catch" campaign in which free sunscreen is being provided to players, coaches, fans, team employees and media at camps around the country.

For instance at the Giants (our co-founder Will’s favorite team and reason to be happy or sad on Mondays) and Jets camps free sunscreen dispensers are available while other camps handed out packets of sunblock.

Skin Cancer Impacts NFL Players

The NFL is concerned about sun protection because it directly impacts their players.

Skin cancer is on the rise – more people are diagnosed with skin cancer than any other form of cancer. Unfortunately skin cancer is also an epidemic that greatly affects men. Check out our feature “Why Men Are More Likely To Get Skin Cancer”.

Additionally skin cancer has affected many prominent NFL players including quarterback Troy Aikman, coaches like the Jaguars’ Doug Marrone, and owners like the Houston Texans’ Bob McNair to name just a few. Sadly former NFL assistant coach Jim Johnson died from skin cancer in 2009. That’s why the “Crucial Catch” campaign is so important.

NFL Players Care About Sun Protection

Fortunately, it’s not just me saying this. Many NFL players publicly acknowledge caring about their skin and wanting to prevent lasting sun damage.

Miami Dolphins offensive tackle Sam Young said this about sunscreen, going to the doctor and skin cancer doctor visits:

"I do it regularly, being red-haired with freckles, Irish heritage…I go to a dermatologist once a year to make sure everything is good…To me, it's not worth the risk (who grew up in South Florida and has family members who have had skin cancer.”

Atlanta Falcons coach Dan Quinn had a spot "removed or checked on during one of his annual skin exams and says team members and coaches will “remind one another” to use sunscreen. He says everyone on the team is “pretty mindful" about sun protection. That’s what we like to hear!

Denver Broncos linebacker Justin Simmons wears long sleeved clothing and tights when practicing and regularly wears sunscreen. He is well aware the Colorado’s higher altitude makes his skin even more susceptible to sun damage tights. As he so accurately puts it: "When you're out here, yeah, you have to [wear sunscreen]”.

Sun Protection for Everyone

It’s not just for us regular folk. You can be tough on the field and want to take care of your skin at the same time. The traditional image of the tough guy is no match for UV rays. Sun protection is vital for everyone.

Learn more about skin cancer prevention and sun protection through our Skin Cancer and Suncare Smarts blog series.

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