Blog Entry

London game is in danger for 2011

Posted on: February 9, 2011 9:26 am

Posted by Andy Benoit

If you’re a jingoistic American who doesn’t like seeing NFL regular season games being played across the pond, you’ll see a bright side to the NFL labor strife. Alex Marvez of Fox Sports says that the annual game in London is on hold until a new Collective Bargaining Agreement is reached.

The league is planning on playing the game in 2011, but only if a new CBA is reached in March.
London (US Presswire)
"We are going through the preparation right now," Chris Parsons, the NFL’s VP of international business said. "We are working with the (NFL) scheduler to make sure if we do get the CBA done by a certain time that we will actually be able to execute that game. Normally we announce the game at this time of year, but we've chosen not to do that because of the uncertainty."

Because of the logistics involved, the NFL normally has to schedule the game sometime in February. However, with several years of experience with playing in London now, the league may need less prep time in 2011 than usual. It’s also possible that the league could salvage the game by playing it later in the season, as opposed to in October.

"We're going to hold out to play the game as long as possible," Parsons said. "The closer it gets to the start of the season, the harder this gets to do."

Marvez writes, “The lack of a London game would disrupt the momentum the NFL has gained in the market. All five of the previous Wembley Stadium contests were sellouts. The league also is expecting a record rating for Super Bowl XLV in the United Kingdom (final numbers are still being tabulated).”

He also points out that NFL postseason ratings on Sky Sports television in Britain increased 60 percent this past year.

The NFL is more than eager to expand its British presence. There has been mention of eventually putting a team in London.

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Category: NFL
Since: Dec 2, 2011
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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 9, 2011 12:08 am
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Since: Apr 7, 2007
Posted on: February 10, 2011 10:48 am

London game is in danger for 2011

The London game, and any other game out of the states is just plain stupid! Start worrying whether or not we are going to have games in the states next year and let NFL Europe play in Europe! The NFL is going down hill is so many ways lately, and fans are eventually going to say screw you! Roger Goodell needs to wake the hell up!

Since: Oct 1, 2010
Posted on: February 10, 2011 4:55 am

You Don't Have to be "Jingoistic" to Not Like It

Hey Benoit, a person doesn't have to be a "jingoistic" American to not like to have games played overseas. No need to put cynical little digs in your articles.

Since: Aug 21, 2006
Posted on: February 9, 2011 11:37 pm

London game is in danger for 2011

sorry but the games have all been sell-outs and hugely successful,the Superbowl was shown live both major TV CHANNELS in Britain not to mention coverage acroos the continent of Europe so how much more catching on do you think the NFL needs to do?

Since: Aug 21, 2006
Posted on: February 9, 2011 11:31 pm

London game is in danger for 2011

i can assure you the "London game" is not treated as a circus or anovelty by the English or the rest of us European fans of the NFL

Since: Dec 29, 2009
Posted on: February 9, 2011 10:57 pm

London game is in danger for 2011

"You don't see th Euros bringing "regular season crickett to the US!"
That simply because a) England is the only European country that plays cricket professionally and b) cricket is soooooooooo boring that it make baseball seems like a fast action sport. Who wants to spend an entire day watching a sport where there is a piece of action every 10 minutes?

Since: Dec 29, 2009
Posted on: February 9, 2011 10:53 pm

London game is in danger for 2011

 "It's a silly idea that the English view as a circus or novelty."
AES - considering that NFL football has been shown in England for close to 30 years now and they have semi-pro leagues (are the London Olympians still around?) and a university league I doubt you can call it a cicus or novelty anymore.

Schmolik, a good post, still I sense a few misperceptions.

"growing the sport in a country smaller in area than the STATE of IllinoisMore people live in the states of California and Texas combined than the entire country of England. Why not a game in Paris. Or in Germany (where they actually had more of an interest in American football than England)? Or maybe even China? The world does not revolve around "
By that logic Alaska should be guaranteed a team as its the biggest state by area. If you are talking about population (which I believe you are) then how many states with NFL teams have 62 million people? England has the same population as Germany and more than France. As for being more popular in Germany, the only evidence to support this was the attendance at NFL Europe games which was around 40,000 a game in Germany, well above anywhere else. However, Germany was just being introduced to the NFL, while in England it had already being around for a while, so the english just didn't want to watch players who had no real chance of playing in the NFL, while the Germans didn't mind.
By this logic when the league first started it had US based teams (New York Knights, Birmingham Fire, etc) and yet the attendance was lower in the US than in Europe, so does this mean that there was more interest in football in Europe than in the US? Of course not, same reason as above the US fans didnot want to watch substandard players!
As for China, who there will be able to afford the tickets and all the merchandise that the NFL would want to sell, other than the few hundred wealthy elite?

"And if they do want to expand international play, can we do it without taking home games away from teams in the US?"

Sorry you've lost me will this be possible? All the current teams are based in the US, so where will they get the teams from!

Since: Jan 22, 2007
Posted on: February 9, 2011 5:22 pm

London game is in danger for 2011

Reg season football in Europe is stupid.  You don't see th Euros bringing regular season crickett to the US!  The NFL would be much better served by playing some games in US cities w/out an NFL team like Des Moines IA for a Vikings game.  I think the NFL trying to expose itself to Europe just isn't going to catch on!

Since: Nov 6, 2006
Posted on: February 9, 2011 4:11 pm

London game is in danger for 2011

Very well thought out post Schmolik, I agree with you 100%. 

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