NFL Collective Bargaining Agreement

Article 51

Section 13
On-Field Microphones


During NFL games and for the express purpose of creating NFL programming, NFL Films will be permitted to put microphones on any players that NFL Films selects. During the regular season each starting quarterback will be required to wear a microphone at least once, and no player will be required to wear a microphone for this purpose more than four times during the course of any regular season. There will be no limitation with respect to the number of times a player can be required to wear a microphone during the preseason or postseason. None of the sound captured for this purpose can be used during the game in which the player is mic’d without the player’s prior permission, and, unless such prior permission is given, none of the captured sound can be used until viewed and approved by the player or his selected team representative who will have the right to embargo any material he deems to be extremely sensitive or inappropriate. Players may also embargo for a limited time material deemed to be confidential or that might place the player or team at a competitive disadvantage. Players or their selected team representative must advise NFL Films of any material they wish to have embargoed within 24 hours of receiving the material.


For the television broadcast of all NFL preseason, regular season and postseason games NFL Broadcasting, on behalf of the League’s network television partners, can require offensive linemen to wear microphones embedded in shoulder pads in order to capture ambient sound from the playing field. The pads will be wired by NFL Filmstrained technicians. Microphones will be opened after the offense breaks the huddle and will be closed a few seconds after the snap of the ball. At no time will the microphones be open when the players are in the locker room, the huddle or the team bench areas and all transmissions will be encrypted. Audio captured in accordance with this provision will be used only in the live ambient audio mix of that particular game. The NFL will require its television partners to agree to use best efforts to refrain from broadcasting any captured audio that contains inappropriate or sensitive content, and that their failure to do so shall result in a loss of the right to broadcast such audio in the future.