Updated Jan. 27, 2019 06:04:17After being the subject of a lengthy antitrust investigation, the Hanes Geo-Powered Components are back in the spotlight, and now, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell has banned some of them.
The league said Friday that it has banned “products that are designed to modify or enhance an NFL player’s playing technique,” and the players union has said it’s considering filing a lawsuit against the company.
“We’ve also decided to ban the Hanees Geo-powered Components, which were created specifically to enhance the game play of football,” the NFL said in a statement.
“These products have been identified as having potentially detrimental effects on the game of football.
We are working with our legal counsel to investigate these allegations and take appropriate action.”
Hanes has said that its Geo Components are not a “dynamic system” and that its “core principles are to provide optimal performance for players, coaches, and the NFL.
These products are intended to enhance football gameplay and provide an immersive experience for fans and viewers.””
The Hanes-made Geo-Power components were designed to enhance an existing player’s ability to perform the necessary functions in the field of play,” the company said in its statement.
The NFL is not alone in taking a stand on these products.
Last year, the league’s commissioner and the owners’ union both reached a settlement with the company in an antitrust case.
The new lawsuit could force Hanes to remove some of the products that were banned.
It’s unclear what that settlement entails, but NFL teams are also considering litigation.
A spokesman for the union did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
“It’s an issue we’re going to take a hard look at,” said David J. Schoenfeld, a law professor at George Washington University who specializes in antitrust.
“We’ve had a number of incidents where the league has banned products and there have been complaints and issues with some of those products.
There is a question about whether these were appropriate products, but that remains to be seen.
We’re going in a different direction.
We may look at whether they’re more acceptable, whether they were approved by the NFL or whether they could have been done without approval.”
The NFL’s decision could have ramifications for the rest of the league.
The NBA’s new Commissioner Adam Silver said in his statement that he was “deeply disappointed” by the ban.
“The league is committed to continuing to work closely with the NFL on the issue of artificial intelligence in all aspects of player performance,” Silver said.
“With the ongoing investigation of the HANEES Geo-power components, I believe we should all be very careful in the future when it comes to products like these.”