NFL Charities Medical Grants

About The Program

Through NFL Charities (NFLC), the National Football League demonstrates its commitment to supporting medical research and advancing the body of scientific breakthroughs and developments that may benefit all who are actively involved in competitive sports and recreational athletic activities.

Each year $1.5 million is allocated to the NFL Charities Medical Grant category to support these research endeavors and help address some of the risk factors that exist not only for football players but for all athletes and citizens with active lifestyles.

The NFL Charities Medical Grant Evaluation Committees review, evaluate and score all submitted Medical Grant proposals based on scientific merit, clinical relevance, and significance to the NFL. The top recommendations are presented to the NFLC Board of Directors for funding consideration. NFLC also places emphasis on research proposals focused on concussion and traumatic brain injury, cardiovascular research and Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infections.

Who Can Apply

NFLC Medical Grant funding is available for Principal Investigators at non-profit educational and research institutions within the United States of America. For-profit enterprises and institutions that are outside of the USA are not eligible for funding consideration.

2011 Application Process

The 2011 Medical Grant application cycle closed on September 15, 2011 after receiving an unprecedented number of applications through our online, paperless Grant Application Management System (G.A.M.S).  Grant determinations will be made and announced toward the end of the calendar year.

We thank you for your interest and ask that you check back next spring for updated information regarding the application process in 2012 as well as the link to the 2012 online application form at that time.

Award Amount

Eligible applicants may apply for grant awards of up to $100,000 each fiscal year. Please note that NFLC Medical Grants run on an 18-month cycle.

Detailed Requirements

The NFLC Medical Research Grant category includes specific Policies and Guidelines which are outlined on the application form itself (once available). Every applicant is required to confirm their eligibility and adherence to the terms and conditions of this Grant category by accepting the Grant Policies and Guidelines prior to the start of their Grant application process, . Each applicant is also required to download the appropriate "NFLC Compliance Form" (returning grantees or new applicants) and upload a completed* *version of that document into the required documents section of the Grant Application.

The following provides an outline about this grant program and requirements needed for the application process.


  • NFLC Medical Grants are awarded each year and all approved Medical Grant projects run on an 18-month cycle.
  • Individual maximum grant awards will not exceed $100,000. When submitting your budget information, do not request more than the $100,000 maximum amount or more than what is needed to fund your project.
  • Indirect costs should not be included in your total project budget.  Only direct research costs are funded by NFLC grants.
  • Salaries for PI's and Co-PI's (Ph.D.'s and M.D.'s) must follow NIH guidelines.
  • Grants are made to nonprofit educational and research institutions only.  Applications from for-profit enterprises will not be considered.
  • Medical research grants are made within the United States of America.
  • NFLC does not make grants to individual Principal Investigators, grants are only disbursed to the institution or research organization accounts associated with the PI.

Principal Investigator (PI) and Co-PI:

  • One submission per PI and/or Co-PI can be funded within each fiscal year.
  • One submission per institution can be funded each year. A maximum of two (2) submissions per institution will be considered.  Prospective applicants should be vetted through their administrative offices in order to ensure that only the top two proposals are submitted by any one institution.  Administrative contacts must sign off on each Compliance Certificate that accompanies application(s) from their institution, thereby ensuring such vetting has occurred.

PI and Co-PI Disclosure:

  • All previously awarded grant support for the project under consideration as well as any potential overlaps must be submitted.
  • Post doctoral fellows serving as PI or Co-PI must include assurances that they will remain at the same institution for the duration of the grant period.
  • In the event that an applying PI moves from one institution to another during the grant evaluation period or once a grant cycle begins, NFLC must be contacted immediately to determine if appropriate reallocation of NFLC grant funds can be made.  Approvals are made on a case-by-case basis. UPDATE: In December 2012, the NFL announced the creation of the National Football League Foundation (NFL Foundation) following an update to the structure of the NFL's philanthropic organizations. The NFL Youth Football Fund was merged with NFL Charities and then renamed NFL Foundation. For more information about the NFL Foundation, visit:
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