This one deals with very hefty and timely subject matter as it depicts a doctor that delved into the brain damage problems that have plagued NFL players. Because its subject matter is so heavy, I can imagine the NFL being nitpicky and pointing out whether the events that take place in the film are true. If the film paints the NFL out to be the villain, then it'll suffer in my opinion. Both at the hands of the NFL and critics.
My other biggest concern is Will Smith. While I have enjoyed his on-screen star charisma, I've never really bought him as an actor per se. Here, he looks like he's trying really hard to not be his "King of Cool" self by playing the role quite straight and putting on the African accent. Even if he doesn't get an Oscar nod for this, if it fares well, here is hoping he seeks out more movies where he isn't saving the world. Also, I hope that Gugu Mbatha-Raw has a larger role than the trailer suggests. While the film is the Smith show, I would hate to see an actress of her caliber relegated mostly in the background.
Overall, I have my reservations about the film. But if it doesn't get hit with controversy by the NFL or get harsh reviews, then it might be a late bloomer in the awards race. If not, then it might at least fare better commercially if Will Smith still has staying power at the box office.
Please feel free to write your thoughts in the comments section on whether you think it looks primed to be an awards player or whether it just looks like a good film. Thanks for reading!