Tha Sports Junkies 101

Dr. Elliot Pellman Retires After 30 Years

Keith Allison via Flickr



Dr. Elliot Pellman is a rheumatologist and he served as the chairman of the NFL‘s mild-traumatic brain injury committee, even though he lacked experience or expertise in brain trauma.

USA Today reported it was Roger Goodell‘s decision that Pellman should retire after nearly 30 years with the NFL and the New York Jets.

Pellman’s views on concussions are well established; as leader of the MTBI committee, he was responsible for shaping the league’s views on concussions, which were highly questionable.

Pellman’s more insidious comments include claims that no former NFL players had suffered brain damage and that it was safe to allow a concussed player to return to a game immediately following an injury.

Several NFL players disliked him, as he was supposed to use his expertise to protect players, not put them in harm’s way. These players include former Jets offensive tackle D’Brickashaw Ferguson, who called recent revelations about Pellman’s work  “Disheartening“.


According to USA Today, Goodell‘s memo to the NFL clubs read as follows:

“As we add additional full-time medical resources to our team, it is important to recognize and express our gratitude to Dr. Elliot Pellman, who is retiring after nearly 30 years of service, first to the New York Jets and then to the NFL. We thank Dr. Pellman for his dedicated service to the game and for his many contributions to the NFL and our clubs, and appreciate his willingness to aid in this transition over the next few months.

“We intend to hire a highly-credentialed physician to serve as (the) chief medical officer and work in the league office on a full-time basis. This individual will be responsible for working with our team medical staffs, the NFLPA and our medical committees, as well as the broader independent scientific and medical communities.

“This individual will add to our expertise and help ensure that our clubs have access to the most up-to-date information, that our research funds are spent in an effective and targeted way, and that our players and team staffs receive timely and thorough information on injuries and injury prevention.”