NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell says putting American football in London has worked out better than expected.
At his “State of the League” press conference, Goodell talked up London as a market where the NFL has already experienced tremendous growth, with more to come.
“London has done not only everything that we expected, but more than we expected,” Goodell said. “They’re responding to the game better than we ever dreamed, with more enthusiasm, more passion. You see it every year. When I was back last fall, you could see the passion and the understanding of the game. Every event that we have explodes with interest. We are continuing to advance our interests over there from the same point of playing more games. The more media coverage that we have, obviously leads to better understanding of the game on a national basis. We are working with sponsors, we are working with the fans directly, but already the three games that we have here, the report I had yesterday was just a couple thousand tickets left. That may be sold out by now. That’s three games in an incredibly short period of time. So, their passion is obvious. We want to continue to respond to that fan interest and if we do, we don’t know where it will go, but I think there is great potential in London for the NFL.”
Whether continued growth in London means a franchise based there or more teams giving up home games to play there, it’s clear that the NFL’s experiment with London won’t end any time soon. The league is committed to London for the long term.