With conflicting views around the NFL about just how likely the Jacksonville Jaguars are to become the London Jaguars, one incremental step toward an overseas move could be playing a second annual game a year at Wembley Stadium. But for the immediate future, it appears that the second annual game would be a road game.
The Jaguars are already committed to giving up one of their eight home games a year to play a “home” game in London for the next four years. But while the Jaguars will only play that one game in London this year, Jaguars.com writer John Oehser suggests that starting next year, the Jaguars may also be the visiting team in the NFL’s second annual London game.
“The best way to put it is that in 2014-2016, yes, there is a chance for a second game overseas,” Oehser writes. “It almost certainly will not be a second Jaguars home game. As for what happens after that, four years is a long time and much can change.”
If the NFL wants to see whether London fans will embrace the Jaguars, the best way to find out is to put the Jaguars in London as often as possible and see whether they start to build a fan base. So if it’s not feasible for now to have the Jaguars play two “home” games in London and six in Jacksonville, the Jaguars may start playing one “home” game in London and one “road” game in London each year.
There could be complications with that approach, especially if the Jaguars’ road schedule doesn’t feature any teams that want to give up a true home game to play a “home” game at Wembley. But don’t be surprised if the Jaguars play two games a year in London starting in 2014, as a baby step toward playing eight games a year in London eventually.