The Whole Story with Anderson Cooper Investigates “Hard Hits: Can Football Be Safe?” Featuring Reporting from CNN Sports’ Coy Wire

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  NEW YORK, NY – (September 5, 2023) –The Whole Story with Anderson Cooper, a CNN Original, will mark the first week of the NFL season with an investigation from CNN Sports Anchor and Correspondent Coy Wire on how new developments in the sport aim to make the game safer for players. “Hard Hits: Can Football be Safe?” premieres on Sunday, September 10 at 8pm ET/PT.

From peewee leagues to flag football and Friday night lights in high schools across the country, football is a way of life for many Americans in the fall. However, the average professional football player’s career is just 3.5 years, and the sport comes with huge risks to both the body and brain. In this episode, Wire, who played in the league for nine seasons, speaks with NFL head coaches Andy Reid and Sean McDermott, XFL co-owners Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Dany Garcia, and Jeff Miller, who oversees player health and safety for the NFL, about how the game is revolutionizing to prioritize players’ wellbeing.

“This is not the game that I played – it’s a whole new NFL,” said Wire. “From unprecedented mid-game cancellations after injuries out of respect for players’ health and well-being, to the futuristic technology being used to track, analyze, and potentially detect injuries before they happen, this experience has blown me away and has sparked even greater hope for the future of the game I love.”

Wire goes behind the scenes at the 2023 training camps of the New York Giants and the Atlanta Falcons, and the episode features his reporting from the 2023 NFL Draft and XFL Championship Game. Wire also visits Biocore, an NFL-funded research lab, where he personally tests out some of the league’s most cutting-edge innovations as they seek to make the game safer.

The Whole Story with Anderson Cooper is executive produced by Susan Chun.

The Whole Story with Anderson Cooper will stream live for pay TV subscribers via, CNN connected TV and mobile apps on Sunday, September 10. “Hard Hits: Can Football be Safe?” will be available on demand beginning Saturday, September 9, 2023 to pay TV subscribers via, CNN connected TV and mobile apps, and Cable Operator Platforms. Past episodes of The Whole Story are available to stream now on Max.

The Whole Story is also available as a CNN Audio showcast. Visit or listen wherever you get your podcasts.

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