Photo Contest

54th Annual Photo Contest

(2021 NFL Season)


General Rules For All Entries

1. Entered photographs must have been taken during the 2021 National Football League season, as defined in the “Eligibility” section below (“Photographs That Are Eligible”).

2. For digital photo submission, FTP and required specifications are available at: Digital photo entries may be submitted beginning February 9, 2022 until April 11, 2022. Each digital photo submission must be at least 1 MB. NOTE: The deadline for the 2021 season's contest has passed, and no more entries will be accepted.

3. The contestant’s name and address, plus the date of the picture, the location of the game, and the category in which the photograph is entered, must be included with each digital submission.

4. The maximum number of entries any photographer may submit is limited to 12.

5. All entries are placed in the permanent archives of the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio. Copyright privileges, however, remain with the photographer.

Announcement of Winners

The judging for the 54th Annual Pro Football Hall of Fame Photo Contest will occur in April 2022. Winners will be notified after the judging panel has made its decisions. Public announcement will be made soon thereafter.


Photographers Who Are Eligible
All professional photographers who make photographs for general circulation newspapers and magazines, who make still photographs for television use, or who are assigned to game coverage by a professional football team are eligible to compete. Publication is not necessary for entry.

Photographs That Are Eligible
Pictures made of activity ON or OFF the playing field during the progress of any regularly scheduled 2021 National Football League game, including preseason, regular season, and playoff games, are eligible. In the feature category, the term “during the progress of” shall be interpreted to include activity just before or just after the game (such as locker-room scenes, coin tosses, etc.).

Categories of Competition
There will be two categories of competition:
1. Action
2. Feature

Both black-and-white and color entries are eligible for either category. The categories are considered to be self-descriptive terms, and it shall be left to the discretion of each photographer as to which class he/she wishes to enter. As a matter of clarification—PORTRAITURE AND EXPERIMENTAL PHOTOGRAPHY will be considered feature entries. It also should be noted that the panel of judges reserves the right to reclassify any entry if, in the opinion of the judges, such a reclassification would be logical and appropriate and in the best interest of the photographer. See PRESENTATION SUGGESTIONS for more specific guidelines.


Photograph of the Year-Dave Boss Award of Excellence

The top individual prize of the 54th Annual Pro Football Hall of Fame Photo Contest will be awarded to the individual category winner the judges deem to be the outstanding entry of the entire contest. The judging panel first will select the two individual category winners and, from those, will designate the “Photograph of the Year” award. The winning photographer also will receive the Dave Boss Award of Excellence.

Awards in Each Category

First-, second-, and third-place photographs will be selected in both the action and feature categories. In addition, an unspecified number of honorable mention awards will be made in either or both categories when entries merit such recognition. All first-place photographs will be on display at the Pro Football Hall of Fame for an indefinite period (as available display space permits).

Schedule of Awards


Photograph of the Year—A $1,000 cash prize, along with the $2,000 first-place award.

NOTE: Coupled with the first-place cash award for winning an individual category, the total cash prize to the photographer of the year will be $3,000.

FIRST-PLACE PHOTOS (in both action and feature categories)—$2,000 cash prize and a distinctive personalized plaque.

SECOND-PLACE PHOTOS (in both action and feature categories)—$1,000 cash prize and a distinctive personalized plaque.

THIRD-PLACE PHOTOS (in both action and feature categories)—$500 cash prize and a distinctive personalized plaque.

Presentation Suggestions

Judges often are asked why certain photographs are chosen over others. Presentation has a strong influence on the selection of a photo for final judging. Here are some suggestions for making your entries potential winners:

1. Use sound judgment in determining the correct category for the image you are entering. Be certain the photograph qualifies for the category.

2. Sensitivity and judgment should be utilized in cropping pictures. Proper cropping enhances a photograph’s impact.

3. Image quality should be of the highest standards. An image can be disqualified if the printing is less than professional.