NFL Reportedly Pressured ESPN to End 'Frontline' Partnership on Documentary

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistAugust 23, 2013

NEW ORLEANS, LA - FEBRUARY 01:  NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell speaks to the media during a press conference for Super Bowl XLVII at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center on February 1, 2013 in New Orleans, Louisiana.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

The National Football League wasn't pleased with the early returns from a collaborative project between ESPN and documentary program Frontline, which focuses on the issue of head injuries in the league.

James Andrew Miller of the New York Times reports a meeting was held last week between several high-profile members of both camps, including NFL commissioner Roger Goodell and ESPN president John Skipper.

At the combative meeting, the people said, league officials conveyed their displeasure with the direction of the documentary, which is expected to describe a narrative that has been captured in various news reports over the past decade: the league turning a blind eye to evidence that players were sustaining brain trauma on the field that could lead to profound, long-term cognitive disability.