MOUNT LAUREL, NJ (November 12, 2020) – The National Football League Alumni Association (NFLA) launched a new health initiative, Huddle Up: Let’s Talk Obesity, last month. Primarily targeting men, the campaign aims to build awareness and educate fans and former players about obesity, a disease affecting more than 40% of the U.S. population. This week, a new thirty-second Public Service Announcement (click here to view) was made available for members of the media community to view and consider sharing in a public outreach capacity. The spot features NFL Hall-of-Famers, Super Bowl MVPs, Super Bowl Champions and perennial All-Pros including Franco HarrisSteve YoungOttis AndersonJon Runyan and Rocky Bleier.

Obesity has been a proven link to life-threatening health conditions such as heart disease for many years, but the NFLA’s Huddle Up: Let’s Talk Obesity campaign has taken on new relevance given the intersection of obesity to COVID-19.  Research suggests that 41% of adults in the U.S. have at least one underlying medical condition, which includes obesity, that may put them at higher risk of severe illness or even death.  In fact, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recently updated their guidelines to list overweight, obesity, and severe obesity as conditions that might increase one’s risk of severe illness or hospitalization from COVID-19.  Additional data confirms that obesity is the number one risk factor for developing a severe case of COVID-19 in people under the age of 60.

Bart Oates, President of the NFLA, also addressed COVID-19 concerns highlighted from a recent NFLA Member Survey. “We can all agree that COVID-19 is public health enemy #1 right now. Four out of five of our members surveyed think that obesity may increase the risk of serious complications due to COVID-19. And almost 95% of those same members recognized the importance of confronting and addressing health issues, and not hiding from them.” While encouraging men to open up about their health, the Huddle Up: Let’s Talk Obesity campaign also shares a positive message that there’s a real path to better long-term health with many options and resources available for help.

The new thirty-second long Public Service Announcement begins airing in several Florida locations starting the week of November 9th during Monday Night Football and Thursday Night Football games, and runs through the remainder of the regular NFL season. For additional obesity-related information, articles and personal shared stories, there is a dedicated campaign website: www.HuddleUpObesity.com. The NFLA is proud to partner with healthcare company Novo Nordisk Inc. on this initiative.

About NFL Alumni Association:
NFL Alumni was founded in 1967 and is the oldest and most recognizable national organization of retired professional athletes. NFL Alumni consists of former NFL players, coaches, executives, spouses, cheerleaders, and associate members. Part of NFL Alumni’s dual mission is “Caring for Kids”. Player alumni give back in their local communities by raising funds for youth-related charities through their 35 regional chapters. It is a tradition that has existed for more than 50 years. Alumni support typically raises more than $1.5 million dollars for worthwhile causes. The other half of NFLA’s mission, “Caring for our Own” is to serve, assist and inform its members and their families. Alumni members are offered a diverse package of wellness, business, career, and legal services to help members and their families be healthy, productive, and connected to one another. To learn more please visit: https://www.nflalumni.org/