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Goodell wants more regularity, games in London


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#1 xzmattzx

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Posted 22 October 2011 - 01:57 PM

Growing the game is one thing, but I don't know about some of his ideas. Having teams play more consistently in London to build team fanbases makes sense, to help out struggling teams like, say, Jacksonville. But having good teams play in London? Can you imagine the Steelers, Eagles, Giants, Cowboys, or Packers losing a home game to London? That would not go well at all.

Roger Goodell pitches British invasion


The NFL is considering a plan to have a few teams play regularly in Britain to build an overseas following -- part of the league's evaluation about whether a franchise could be permanently based in London.

Commissioner Roger Goodell said Saturday the league is looking into whether such a scenario would "advance our cause here by growing the fan base quicker."

He is talking to several teams about becoming regulars in the British capital, a development he thinks would be "very powerful and lead us to what we ultimately would like to do -- have a franchise here in London."

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are making their second trip in three years to Wembley to play the Chicago Bears on Sunday.

It is the fifth regular-season game held in London since 2007.

The league decided this month to keep playing in London through at least 2016, with an aim to play at least two games a year.

Goodell said multiple games in Britain could happen as early as next year, and he hopes more teams will agree to make regular trips.

"We want as many teams to come over. We want to see the more popular teams come over," Goodell said at a question-and-answer session with international fans. "Should we focus on just a couple of teams as consistently coming back here to build a fan base around those teams? The Bucs are coming back now for a second time in a five-year period of time. And the idea is, will that allow them to build a fan base quicker?"

Goodell praised the Glazer family, which owns both the Bucs and Premier League team Manchester United, for taking a leading role in promoting the game overseas. He said the Bucs are one of several teams the league has been in discussions with over more London visits.

"Obviously, the Glazer family has an interest over here with Man U," Goodell said. "And I think they want to see the Bucs become a global franchise. And I think that's a great thing for Tampa. I think it's a great thing for the NFL."

The league's ambitions haven't been dampened by a decrease in ticket sales this year. Sunday's game is the first of the five regular-season games at Wembley that is not expected to be a sellout. Organizers say an estimated 75,000 tickets have been sold, with the stadium's capacity about 82,000.

Goodell echoed organizers' claims that the lower sales were caused by the lockout, which meant tickets didn't go on sale until September -- several months later than usual.

"We started late," Goodell said. "But we're thrilled with our ticket sales. We obviously love to sell as many as we have, and we're still selling."

He said the NFL has no plans to play in other European countries in the near future, looking to establish as big a presence as possible in Britain first.

"We want to bring our game to continental Europe. The issue is, we want to make a success out of it in the U.K.," he said. "We think this (London) has got all of the basics that we need to be successful. It's got an advanced fan base, a strong media market, a great stadium. We have a long history here. So all those things contribute, let's make it work. And if we can be successful here, then we can take that model, potentially, to continental Europe."

Goodell was joined by Jerome Bettis, the former Pittsburgh Steelers running back who is one of several NFL stars who have flown to London to promote the game. "The Bus" was given a warm reception by a knowledgeable group of about 100 fans, but said he's had to tweak his nickname this week to fit in.

"I'm a double-decker now," he said.


http://espn.go.com/n...london-regulars

#2 English Giant

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Posted 22 October 2011 - 02:16 PM

Its bull****, i dont agree with what Goodell is doing one bit...he's a tool.

Ive been a fan of the sport since 1984 and can honestly say it is americas game.

The atmosphere statside is electric. Half the people at these Wembley games dont have a clue whats going on...the other half are uisnessmen with free company bought tickets. The whole thing is a farce.

Taking the game away from hardworking blue collar fans on youre side of the pond is an absoloute discgrace.

#3 dawkins4prez

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Posted 22 October 2011 - 02:43 PM

read my sig!

#4 CaliEagle

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Posted 22 October 2011 - 03:08 PM

I hate the globalization of everything. Sports leagues don't have to be and shouldn't be globalized. I think it will affect the quality of play because of all the travel time and time changes. I can't stand Goodell, even though Tagliabue was the one who first started exploring the globalization of the NFL. If they want to have another football league, then fine. But, I don't want to see the Eagles play the London Monarchs for the right to go to the playoffs.

#5 Dawkins 20

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Posted 22 October 2011 - 03:14 PM

:sleep:

#6 NEPAEAGLE2

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Posted 22 October 2011 - 03:34 PM

I hate goodell

#7 VaBeach_Eagle

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Posted 22 October 2011 - 03:49 PM

If they're going to add one or two games to the schedule and have neutral site games then it doesn't bother me.

#8 EagleJoe8

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Posted 22 October 2011 - 03:54 PM

Have always hated this idea. Preseason games, fine. Hell, move the Pro Bowl around if you want. I'd be surprised to see a London based franchise sustain success. There are no short road trips, and I think they'd struggle with free agency unless they way over pay for them. I can see draft picks bolting back to the states as soon as possible. This is the National Football League, not the International Football League. Let those folks have their soccer.

#9 VaBeach_Eagle

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Posted 22 October 2011 - 04:00 PM

Have always hated this idea. Preseason games, fine. Hell, move the Pro Bowl around if you want. I'd be surprised to see a London based franchise sustain success. There are no short road trips, and I think they'd struggle with free agency unless they way over pay for them. I can see draft picks bolting back to the states as soon as possible. This is the National Football League, not the International Football League. Let those folks have their soccer.

If they had a London based franchise, I would imagine that they'd do something like 4 home games in a row and 4 road games in a row and they'd have a US based practice facility. Or even all 8 road games in a row and all 8 home games in a row.

#10 lorddevn

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Posted 22 October 2011 - 04:22 PM

If they had a London based franchise, I would imagine that they'd do something like 4 home games in a row and 4 road games in a row and they'd have a US based practice facility. Or even all 8 road games in a row and all 8 home games in a row.

That really favors them in the sense that 8 different teams would have to fly to london to play on a weeks notice while they got to stay in their own time zone for 8 straight weeks...Although it might be the only financial way for a team in london to stay a float.

#11 VaBeach_Eagle

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Posted 22 October 2011 - 04:29 PM

That really favors them in the sense that 8 different teams would have to fly to london to play on a weeks notice while they got to stay in their own time zone for 8 straight weeks...Although it might be the only financial way for a team in london to stay a float.

How would it affect them having to fly across the Atlantic every other week though? How else could they make it fair for both sides?

If their home base in the US is in Tampa or Jacksonville then their away games would still require travel time going from Tampa/Jacksonville to wherever their away games are located.

As for the 8 teams flying to London, they'd have many months notice to fly to London. The schedule comes out in what, May or June? Three of those teams would know automatically that they'll be flying to London because they'd be in their same division.

I'm not saying that a London team is ideal or even desired, but how would they make it work if they did it? Which I don't think they will.

Maybe if the schedule is increased to 18 games like they wanted then they could do 3 in a row at home and 3 in a row on the road for the entire season.

#12 lorddevn

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Posted 22 October 2011 - 05:35 PM

How would it affect them having to fly across the Atlantic every other week though? How else could they make it fair for both sides? I see the points you're making but letting them stay home for 8 weeks in a row while 8 teams fly to them is unfair to other teams, pluse every team would either need a bye after playing them or that team gets screwed twice.

If their home base in the US is in Tampa or Jacksonville then their away games would still require travel time going from Tampa/Jacksonville to wherever their away games are located.

As for the 8 teams flying to London, they'd have many months notice to fly to London. The schedule comes out in what, May or June? Three of those teams would know automatically that they'll be flying to London because they'd be in their same division. Maybe my 1 week notice was wrong use of words, what i meant is that they would have to play a game on sunday and then fly to london sometime that week, while the london team was just chilling in their own town. There's the time zone difference as well, teams already struggle with 3 hours, now the east teams it would be 5 hours or west teams 8 hours,

I'm not saying that a London team is ideal or even desired, but how would they make it work if they did it? Which I don't think they will. I agree

Maybe if the schedule is increased to 18 games like they wanted then they could do 3 in a row at home and 3 in a row on the road for the entire season.



#13 evilwaldo

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Posted 22 October 2011 - 05:36 PM

I will not comment until Wallyhorse gives his two cents.

#14 lorddevn

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Posted 22 October 2011 - 05:38 PM

I will not comment until Wallyhorse gives his two cents.

I'm sure games will be played at 3PM london time that way the NFL can have games on TV at 10AM, 1PM, 4PM and 8:30PM, it's the NFL's way of dominating Sunday TV

#15 smanno

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Posted 22 October 2011 - 10:00 PM

Didn't we try this with NFL Europe?? How is that doing into the rating this year?

#16 VaBeach_Eagle

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Posted 22 October 2011 - 11:09 PM

Didn't we try this with NFL Europe?? How is that doing into the rating this year?

Comparing minor league sports to major league sports isn't quite an even comparison. Put a Norfolk Tides baseball game on TV at the same time as a Baltimore Orioles game (the Tides are a minor league team for Baltimore) and see which one does better.

NFL Europe vs. NFL is like Apples vs. Spinach. Plus, if I recall correctly NFL Europe did fairly well in England.

#17 smanno

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Posted 23 October 2011 - 02:23 AM

Comparing minor league sports to major league sports isn't quite an even comparison. Put a Norfolk Tides baseball game on TV at the same time as a Baltimore Orioles game (the Tides are a minor league team for Baltimore) and see which one does better.

NFL Europe vs. NFL is like Apples vs. Spinach. Plus, if I recall correctly NFL Europe did fairly well in England.

I agree with your baseball point, but it was still football. Minor league football or not, it was their only way to watch it in person. I believe after a few years the newness wore off and people stopped going to games. I could be wrong but I think at the end of it there was not even a team in England. A few in Germany and one in the Netherlands. We do not need more cash strapped or struggling Franchises in the NFL. Look at Hockey and the NBA, they kept expanding to areas in the USA that didn't want them. It just makes for a watered down product.

#18 NorthBayEagle

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Posted 23 October 2011 - 04:07 AM

there is a reason why we have a preseason and a Pro bowl. Let them have that.

#19 Naforce

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Posted 23 October 2011 - 06:56 AM

I honestly don't want to go to the NFL games in London. I wanna see it where it's supposed to be seen. It's not just about the game..

#20 Gmen4ever

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Posted 23 October 2011 - 07:24 AM

All the logical arguments in the world won't make me change my mind. Hate the idea in every way

#21 bigmac65

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Posted 23 October 2011 - 07:29 AM

They should can this whole idea and here's why, the feild sucks at Whimply and teams that are forced to play over there are messed up due to the travel time, plus to Goodhell, the national game of England is foote or as we know it soccer that will never change even if you played 10 NFL games over there.

#22 dmac5

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Posted 23 October 2011 - 07:33 AM

Next year the Bears and Packers should play in Alaska.

#23 Kolbfan4

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Posted 23 October 2011 - 10:02 AM

This affects a team's home game right? I would be pissed if the Eagles only had like 7 home games because they had to play in London...Why is the NFL trying to expand the sport anyway??? Stay in America, Europe doesn't give a F about American Football...It's all Soccer over there

#24 Aukh

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Posted 23 October 2011 - 10:14 AM

This is what I posted on extremeskins when they had this same discussion:

I don’t understand this point of view. Yes, I don’t think the NFL should have teams based outside of the US and overseas regular season games are a pain in the a** for both teams involved but for the sake of the game the NFL must try to make American Football grow outside the United States. And if the best way they came up with so far is these games on England so be it.

How would it be harmful to the game of American Football and the NFL if the sport was more popular outside the United States? Because from where I’m sitting I can see a lot of positives.


The point is that is bad business for the NFL to have their product confined to the US.

The game plan here is simple. Make the game more popular worldwide. Other pro leagues are created around the world making the sport even more popular and cultivating fan bases and put the NFL as the premier American Football league in the world, what everyone else aspires to be. That way you have the american fans consuming NFL and the fans of the other pro leagues are also consuming NFL.

It’s a win-win situation, which is why I have trouble understanding why so many of you oppose the NFL’s efforts of spreading outside the US. The benefits for the NFL are obvious, but the sport of American Football would benefit from this as well. Right now if you step away from the US most people don’t even know what American Football is. It’s just that weird game those americans play. At an international level, American Football is a niche game right now, far away from sports like Football(soccer) or Rugby. And that is a shame, because American Football is awesome and it should be a major player in the sports world.

But that only happens if more people start playing and following teams on their own countries. This only happens if more people are aware of what it is and the high level that it can be played at. Which only happens if the NFL is more popular outside the United States of America. That is why one team losing one home game per season is a small price to pay when you look at the big picture.

TL;DR American Football only in the US = bad. American Football worldwide = good.

#25 NEPAEAGLE2

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Posted 23 October 2011 - 10:42 AM

This is what I posted on extremeskins when they had this same discussion:



The point is that is bad business for the NFL to have their product confined to the US.

The game plan here is simple. Make the game more popular worldwide. Other pro leagues are created around the world making the sport even more popular and cultivating fan bases and put the NFL as the premier American Football league in the world, what everyone else aspires to be. That way you have the american fans consuming NFL and the fans of the other pro leagues are also consuming NFL.

It’s a win-win situation, which is why I have trouble understanding why so many of you oppose the NFL’s efforts of spreading outside the US. The benefits for the NFL are obvious, but the sport of American Football would benefit from this as well. Right now if you step away from the US most people don’t even know what American Football is. It’s just that weird game those americans play. At an international level, American Football is a niche game right now, far away from sports like Football(soccer) or Rugby. And that is a shame, because American Football is awesome and it should be a major player in the sports world.

But that only happens if more people start playing and following teams on their own countries. This only happens if more people are aware of what it is and the high level that it can be played at. Which only happens if the NFL is more popular outside the United States of America. That is why one team losing one home game per season is a small price to pay when you look at the big picture.

TL;DR American Football only in the US = bad. American Football worldwide = good.


Not really. What is bad business is dedicating resources to a goal that doesn't have a track record of success. Expansion into Europe has not worked. Give it up, NFL. American Football, of the 4 major sports in the US, is the only one that isn't played internationally on any significant level....yet, it's the most successful, popular and profitable of the 4 major sports. So, being only the US doesn't seem to hurt its appeal. American Football does just fine in the US. If Goodell is that bored with it, too bad. Stop worrying about quantity and worry more about quality. It is what it is. The NBA and NHL proved that you can take a good thing too far and hurt the league. There's plenty to address in football on a quality control level...things that are, ironically, mainly the result of overactive tampering from hyperactive idiots like Goodell that don't know when to leave well enough alone. As a result, I think football has more roots with American fans but those roots don't run as deep as they used to.

#26 NEPAEAGLE2

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Posted 23 October 2011 - 11:10 AM

This affects a team's home game right? I would be pissed if the Eagles only had like 7 home games because they had to play in London...Why is the NFL trying to expand the sport anyway??? Stay in America, Europe doesn't give a F about American Football...It's all Soccer over there


Yes. Anyone who disagrees with this should ask themselves why very country-specific sports like Australian Rules Football are not played much at all outside the country of origin. How would Americans take to it? I'd say that it's likely it would fail. Heck, even the wildly popular worldwide sport of Soccer hangs on only tenuously in the US with much smaller fans bases and media attention.

Sports that have international appeal move across borders on their own. It's not because of concentrated marketing and effort by overactive, micromanaging,delusional fools like Goodell. Basketball and baseball, for example, are played in many countries with their own thriving leagues....especially basketball. Almost every major country *(where a large void for a secondary team sport exists) has a functional and viable pro basketball league. This fact is neither making the NBA any better in America nor is it because of significant NBA care and nurturing. Same with baseball in the orient...like in Japan. A product with widespread international appeal doesn't take enormous campaigning because the product sells itself. I think basketball works well in most major countries (particularly in Europe and South Amercia) because it follows a flow and basic principle of soccer. It's not a tough stretch to follow a secondary sport like basketball in places like Italy, Spain and Argentina where soccer rules the roost. Basketball is similar enough in the sense of team work and passing around to get the ball in the goal (or basket).

#27 Aukh

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Posted 23 October 2011 - 11:36 AM

Not really. What is bad business is dedicating resources to a goal that doesn't have a track record of success. Expansion into Europe has not worked. Give it up, NFL. American Football, of the 4 major sports in the US, is the only one that isn't played internationally on any significant level....yet, it's the most successful, popular and profitable of the 4 major sports. So, being only the US doesn't seem to hurt its appeal. American Football does just fine in the US. If Goodell is that bored with it, too bad. Stop worrying about quantity and worry more about quality. It is what it is. The NBA and NHL proved that you can take a good thing too far and hurt the league. There's plenty to address in football on a quality control level...things that are, ironically, mainly the result of overactive tampering from hyperactive idiots like Goodell that don't know when to leave well enough alone. As a result, I think football has more roots with American fans but those roots don't run as deep as they used to.


I guess we’ll have to agree to disagree. But “leaving well enough alone” to me is a mistake, both for the league and for the sport.

You say that financially the NFL is doing well, that is true. It’s also true that expansion into Europe failed before. I would agree that creating a league like the NFL tried to do with NFL Europe or basing a team overseas like it has been suggested with this London project is a mistake. But my contention is that the NFL would make a lot of money if the sport was more popular worldwide. So why not try to make it more popular? Because they risk degrading the quality of the sport as you’ve put it?

To take the NBA as an example like you did, basketball as whole is better today than it was before Jordan and the globalization of the sport. Many nations have strong national leagues and youth tournament play. International competition is…well, competitive. But the NBA is still the point of reference for professional basketball. Is what sports fans worldwide watch when they want to see top level basketball, even in nations with strong national leagues. And the USA is still a powerhouse in international play.

But the NFL shouldn’t be trying to compare American Football to the NBA and basketball. They should be making the sport become closer to what Football (soccer) and Rugby are.

#28 E v 2.0

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Posted 23 October 2011 - 12:10 PM

Goodell is an absolutely absurd moron and this idea is ridiculous and idiotic.

#29 VaBeach_Eagle

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Posted 23 October 2011 - 01:01 PM

Next year the Bears and Packers should play in Alaska.

I would actually rather see a team in Hawaii full time before there's one in London.

#30 DyrtyyByrd

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Posted 23 October 2011 - 02:28 PM

I'm sure games will be played at 3PM london time that way the NFL can have games on TV at 10AM, 1PM, 4PM and 8:30PM, it's the NFL's way of dominating Sunday TV

I dont see a problem with that