Here's to a Future Where Every NFL Player Has a Camera Bolted to His Dome
It was a big week for NFL players wearing cameras recreationally on their heads. First the Vikings slapped a cam on Adrian Peterson's helmet during training camp, setting him loose in practice to give viewers a firsthand look at what it's like to charge into the sturdy midsections of hulking linemen, and also to stand around not doing a whole lot.
Meanwhile, new Raiders punter Chris Kluwe uploaded a couple videos that he recorded using Google Glass, showing kicker Sebastian Janikowski practicing field goals and Kluwe himself (slowly) returning a kick:
Would it have been more exciting to watch a POV video taken by an actual return man like Trindon Holliday or Jacoby Jones? Yes. Was it still worthwhile? Also yes—especially since it gave way to a minor flame war between Buzzfeed and Kluwe.
And regardless, it's still interesting in these early days of POV cams to get a new perspective on the game, even if it is of a relatively mundane practice. Peterson and Kluwe weren't tackled while wearing their expensive and fragile equipment, but if a recording device was durable enough to sustain hits, it could dramatically change the way we watch NFL games.
Strapping a camera on a QB would provide illuminating, terrifying insight into their field vision, and if it were worn by a pass-caller with a bad offensive line, fans could experience sacks without facing the pain. On the flip side, equipping a pass-rusher like J.J. Watt with a cam would be incredibly entertaining—everyone could see the fear in Blaine Gabbert's eyes as he's flattened. On a tight end, the camera would provide the vantage points of both offensive linemen and wide receivers.
Considering the growing popularity of GoPro cameras and the like, it presumably won't be too long before first-person cams make their way to the pros—and football, with its helmets, is in a better position than most mainstream sports to integrate them.
Until then, there's always the WNBA referee cam.