Commissioner Roger Goodell told CBS's "Face the Nation" on Sunday morning that he would "absolutely" let his children play football.
Goodell made the comment in response to President Barack Obama, who said last week that if he had a son, he was not sure if he would let him play football over concerns about concussions in the sport.
Obama and Goodell both have two daughters.
Goodell answered a question about allowing a son to play football by noting the high rate of concussions in girls soccer.
The commissioner would not confirm that there is a proven connection between football and medical problems with retired players during his interview with Bob Schieffer. Goodell stressed that the league is providing research funds to learn more about the risks.
Obama said in last week's interview with The New Republic that even though he is a football fan, he is concerned with the long-term effects on players who have taken hard hits.
Many former players have sued the NFL, accusing the league of not informing them of the risks of concussions and that it is not doing enough to help take care of them.
Goodell said the league does not hide the risk of head injuries.
He said the NFL will continue in its popularity while it works to make it a safer gamer.
"I couldn't be more optimistic about it because the game of football has always evolved," Goodell said. "Through the years, through the decades, we've made changes to our game, to make it safer, to make it more exciting, to make it a better game for the players, for the fans, and we have done that in a very calculated fashion."