This week’s cover of Sports Illustrated features actor Will Smith ahead of the Christmas Day release of the movie Concussion.
In the movie, Smith plays Dr. Bennet Omalu, who helped discover CTE and linked it to football-specific head trauma after performing autopsies on deceased Steelers players. The movie chronicles Omalu’s struggle against the NFL as he fought for the league to take notice of the danger he believed the sport presented to players’ brains.
Ben Reiter’s story on Smith and his role in the movie discusses the questions the film raises about the NFL’s handling of concussions and how the game's future could be altered by an acceptance of Omalu’s discovery.
Also featured in this year-ending issue is a review of 2015 in sports media, a series of tributes to sports figures who passed away this year and a story about Cavaliers forward Kevin Love’s comeback from injury.