According to Jenny Vrentas of TheMMQB.com, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell told her that Riddell will no longer be the official helmet of the NFL after 2013.
After the 2013 season, when Riddell’s licensing agreement with the NFL expires, there will no longer be an “official helmet of the NFL,” commissioner Roger Goodell told The MMQB. That step eliminates a trickle-down perception that one manufacturer’s helmets are superior or preferred. (NFL players are permitted to wear any brand’s helmet as long as the model is approved by NOCSAE, the National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment).
This decision pairs with a wider effort to better incorporate the helmet into strategies that enhance player health and safety, as researchers and helmet manufacturers search for materials and designs that will more effectively reduce the force of impact transferred to a player’s head. The NFL, for its part, is sponsoring a $10 million innovation challenge along with General Electric and Under Armour for new ideas in this area. And this season for the first time, sensors to record head impacts will be used on a small group of NFL players, through a pilot program supported by the league and the NFL Players Association.
The NFL clearly sees that in order to try and minimize concussions and head injuries as a whole they can’t favor one manufacturer, but rather be open to numerous other helmet companies that ca help make the game of football more safe.
Vrentas’ story on the evolution of helmets in football is really great. You can read it in it’s entirety here.