Public Online Interest in Injuries Sustained by National Football League Quarterbacks

Trevor Torgerson, Jake Checketts, Jay Thompson, Chad Hanson, Matt Vassar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Purpose: To use Google search data to determine the public's interest in learning about athletic injuries sustained by NFL quarterbacks and to investigate how long this interest persists after the injuries. Methods: We identified starting NFL quarterbacks during the 2019–2020 season online and used the official NFL injury report to determine whether an injury had occurred to a quarterback. We used the Google Trends tool to analyze search trends around a quarterback's injuries from July 22, 2019, to October 22, 2019. Google trends data was extracted as relative search volume over time. We then compared the results to the expected search forecast derived from an autoregressive integrated moving algorithm (ARIMA) model. Results: All 6 injured quarterbacks were associated with increases (64% to 100%) in relative search volumes for terms related to their injury. Furthermore, the data showed a consistent increase in search engine activity around the injuries associated with NFL quarterbacks in the first 3 days, marking a particularly influential time frame for public engagement. Conclusion: Our data show an increase in Google traffic surrounding the injuries of prominent NFL quarterbacks within the first 3 days following their injuries. Clinical Relevance: Social media can provide a platform for patient education through increasing patient awareness and knowledge regarding athletic injuries.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e607-e614
JournalArthroscopy, Sports Medicine, and Rehabilitation
Volume2
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2020

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