After 23 games in London, still no matchups of two winning teams

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When the Titans face the Chargers on Sunday at Wembley Stadium, it will be the 23rd NFL regular-season game played in London. And the 23rd game without a matchup between two winning teams.

Incredibly, the NFL has never sent two teams that had winning records at the time of the game to London. In fact, Titans (3-3) vs. Chargers (4-2) is one of the best games the league has ever played in London, in terms of the record of the two teams heading into the game.

The NFL says it’s continuing to grow more popular in England, and the games seem to be full of enthusiastic fans. But the quality of football is often lousy. Yesterday’s Seahawks-Raiders game was a bad one, and there have been a lot of bad ones through the years.

Here are the 23 London games so far, with the teams’ records heading into the game:

2007: Giants (5-2) vs. Dolphins (0-7)
2008: Chargers (3-4) vs. Saints (3-4)
2009: Patriots (4-2) vs. Buccaneers (0-6)
2010: Broncos (2-5) vs. 49ers (1-6)
2011: Bears (3-3) vs. Buccaneers (4-2)
2012: Patriots (4-3) vs. Rams (3-4)
2013: Steelers (0-3) vs. Vikings (0-3)
2013: 49ers (5-2) vs. Jaguars (0-7)
2014: Dolphins (1-2) vs. Raiders (0-3)
2014: Lions (5-2) vs. Falcons (2-5)
2014: Cowboys (6-3) vs. Jaguars (1-8)
2015: Jets (2-1) vs. Dolphins (1-2)
2015: Bills (3-3) vs. Jaguars (1-5)
2015: Lions (1-6) vs. Chiefs (2-5)
2016: Colts (1-2) vs. Jaguars (0-3)
2016: Giants (3-3) vs. Rams (3-3)
2016: Washington (4-3) vs. Bengals (3-4)
2017: Jaguars (1-1) vs. Ravens (2-0)
2017: Saints (1-2) vs. Dolphins (1-1)
2017: Cardinals (3-3) vs. Rams (4-2)
2017: Vikings (5-2) vs. Browns (0-7)
2018: Seahawks (2-3) vs. Raiders (1-4)
2018: Titans (3-3) vs. Chargers (4-2)

There is, however, good news on the horizon: The NFL will play one more game in London, Week Eight between the Eagles and Jaguars. Both teams are 3-3 right now, which means if they both win this week, they’ll give the London fans something next week that they’ve never seen before: Two teams with winning records meeting across the pond.

52 responses to “After 23 games in London, still no matchups of two winning teams

  1. Good news for who? The fans in Philly and Jacksonville probably don’t agree. The only people this is good for are the greedy owners and casual fans of the spectacle. The records of these teams don’t matter to them, it’s like a traveling circus.

  2. I’m with r8tsfan on this one. London games do nothing for 99% of football fans, will never lead to another WLAF, and (as one my bosses once told me, paraphrased) is less than .000000001 of my profit. It’s not cool.

  3. “Good news for who? The fans in Philly and Jacksonville probably don’t agree”.

    Why would Philly fans care? They are not losing a home game. And how many Philadelphia residents are traveling to Jacksonville to attend a game?

    The only people who should even possibly care are those who would actually attend an eighth Jacksonville home game. Everyone else will be watching on television like they always do. Complaining about London games is the epitome of fake outrage.

  4. The football gods have always hated these games, and I can only imagine what horrors they will inflict on the team that becomes the London Silly Nannies.

  5. Prior to this season, the Thursday night matchups stunk. It seemingly took quite a few years of complaints before they made the least effort to try to “fix” that (best fix would have been to discontinue them). Since this is really the first I recall of a mention about the poor London matchups, it may take a while before they decide they need to “fix” those games (especially if they sell out the stadium either way).

  6. The only people who should even possibly care are those who would actually attend an eighth Jacksonville home game. Everyone else will be watching on television like they always do. Complaining about London games is the epitome of fake outrage.
    ——————————————-
    Fans who really care about winning realize those London games mess up your team for at least a week, maybe two. Excessive travel, adjusting to time difference, practice time messed with, in general the routine is upended. Fans who do more than just watch the games and actually care about winning can see this. You sound like the casual fan I was referring to in the original post.

  7. I’ve been to 20/23 games in London. I enjoy them, but it’s nothing like America. it’s a completely neutral ground, and the atmosphere is more that of a soccer game than of Football. The fans don’t fully understand the true value of noise, that homefield advantage provides so well in USA.

  8. You don’t need 2 winning records to see a good game! And you’re wrong about boring games! You’ve only got to go back to 2016 to find two: Skins-Bengals which ended 27-27, and Colts-Jags which ended 27-30 (Colt’s 21 points in the 4th quarter almost pulled of a big comeback win). And back in 2015 the Bills-Jax game saw Bills up 3, then Jax 27 points in Q2 to go 10-27, then Bills pull back 3 by the half – then after a scoreless 3rd, in 4th Bills score 18 unanswered to go up 31-27 before Jax make a final comeback TD to win. But you don’t like Wembley games. Got it.

  9. Then the NFL needs to schedule better teams. Did anyone think the Raiders were going to be a winning team this year? Sure, there are some surprises, but prior to the last couple of years Jacksonville and Cleveland were always losing teams…

  10. You do realize games with winning teams playing each other are very rare in general. Only 1 game this week (pats chiefs) showcased 2 winning teams.

  11. The formula for ‘selecting’ teams isn’t exactly conducive to producing great matchups. Think about it, the Bucs, Jags, Rams and Phins owners were more than happy to play in London because their teams couldn’t win consistently enough to fill their home stadiums.

  12. Niels Skriver – bang on! So many different jerseys for yesterday’s game. Raiders were the ‘home’ team but I think Seattle had a bigger following. And definitely agree about bringing the noise. Unless London has its own team there won’t be a partisan crowd

  13. I don’t like the London games at all. But, at least the stadium is full. Play these games in Toronto and the stands would be 50% full. 1,2,3……………here come the excuses.

  14. This is America. We do not care about games in London, we do not support games in London and we absolutely will not support a franchise in London.

  15. At least at the London games the place is packed with fans. They deserve better there, not the crappy teams all going there. Give them a decent game for god sake.d Cant imagine the Jaguars if they play like yesterday, talk about “tanking”.
    There is nothing wrong with NFL games at Wembley, its a lot more fun than some of the games here.

  16. Themediaisdumberthandirt
    No one asked you to support a team in London, stay put here they don/t need you there.
    Plenty of fans to fill Wembley Stadium, and its great.

  17. EPL teams come here and play games to mostly full stadiums, but the majority of the fans are not there to support a particular team. The stands will look a lot like it does in London – lot’s of jerseys for other teams that aren’t playing in the game. The biggest difference is those games are “friendlies” and are in the pre-season. Not all of the biggest names will play, and that’s understood.
    Why can’t the NFL do the same thing? Play a few preseason games there but leave the regular season alone.

  18. You know what the good news would be. If the NFL never played another game in London. I hope in the next CBA the players hold out until London games are taken off the table. Mexico City is a bit of a hardship too but it doesn’t change time zones and Dallas does have a ton of fans that cross the border to see games played at AT&T stadium. Europe is a farce. This is nothing more than a novelty to them. If the NFL wants to form teams of players that can’t make the league rosters that would be fine. They did it before.
    There are plenty of players that still want to play professional football who aren’t quite good enough to play in the league. Some of them could still make league rosters after playing in London. That’s the solution. Sending NFL teams there not only hurts the home team fans it also hurts visiting fans. I’ll tell you right now Jacksonville would be packed in two weeks if the Eagles played the game there. It would be a sellout. Especially with the weather getting colder droves of Eagles fans would be snapping up tickets in Jacksonville. Some of them are traveling to London but most can’t afford it. They don’t have the time to fly overseas.

  19. I think the only good thing I can think for my team this year, is that I get to roll right out of bed on Sunday morning and start watching football. Which means drinking at 10am!

    Otherwise, I got nothing.

  20. The only thing good about the London game was that it was on early Sunday morning. You could eat your breakfast and watch football. This last game was on at 1:00 the same time as 8 other games. If you weren’t a fan of the teams playing nobody else watched.

  21. Why can’t the NFL do the same thing? Play a few preseason games there but leave the regular season alone.

    _______________________________________
    Because no one would go, making the whole exercise pointless to begin with. Ultimately if home team fans in the US turned up and filled their stadiums there wouldn’t be games in London.
    You don’t see the Patriots, Packers, Eagles and other teams with stronger fanbases giving up home games because their supporters actually turn up every week

  22. Interconference matchups should NEVER be outsourced overseas. The Eagles play at Jacksonville once very eight years which means people in Jacksonville will go 16 years without seeing the Eagles in their stadium which is ridiculous. I’m not a fan of division games being shipped overseas either due to competitive balance issues.

  23. The difference in prices on Stubhub between the Titans-Chargers game and Eagles-Jags game are laughable. And it isn’t Jags “fans” driving up the market.

  24. I don’t even bother with the foreign land games. This is an AMERICAN sport and sending it overseas is worthless.

  25. When the London game started in was 1 game a year. The NFL treated the game as a ‘big deal’. The game was on ‘air’ TV. I believe the games was recorded and replay at the NFL regular time. The teams quickly hated the London game. So what did the NFL do, scheduled more games in London. Bookies and fans didn’t like replays, so the games aired live at 10AM Eastern. That’s 7AM on the left coast! It’s been hard to draw a national audience. The NFL has tried live TV, streaming TV and just about everything else in hoping to attract more viewers. It’s past time for the NFL to realize nobody in the US cares about watching the London games. The only people who watch are the fans of the two teams playing. It may draw a paying crowd in London, but otherwise the interest in London games is now a bust. Moving an NFL team to London will have the same results. Nobody in the US cares!

  26. I’ve been to the UK and every person I’ve seen wearing NFL gear were wearing Cowboys stuff. Matter of fact, it’s like that all over the world.

  27. “Sending NFL teams [to London] not only hurts the home team fans it also hurts visiting fans…Some of them are traveling to London but most can’t afford it. They don’t have time to fly overseas”.

    Direct flight from Philadelphia to London- $774. Travel time 6 hours, 15 minutes. Flight from Philadelphia to Jacksonville- $588. Travel time 5 hours, 43minutes.

    Not exactly a huge difference.

  28. coronalt says:
    October 15, 2018 at 12:16 pm
    Interconference matchups should NEVER be outsourced overseas.
    —————————————
    So you want games that may have divsion championship implications shipped to London? Gee, wonder which team would be willing to give up a home game and maybe a playoff berth for that?

  29. London loves and supports NFL football. The Jaguars are going to have a great home field advantage.

  30. “I’ve been to the UK and every person I saw wearing NFL gear were wearing Cowboys stuff. Matter of fact, it’s like that all over the world”.

    A bunch of those people in Wembley Stadium yesterday must have actually been androids or robots, because a lot of them were wearing team gear other than the Cowboys.

  31. cardinealsfan20 says:
    October 15, 2018 at 1:03 pm
    …………….
    Direct flight from Philadelphia to London- $774. Travel time 6 hours, 15 minutes. Flight from Philadelphia to Jacksonville- $588. Travel time 5 hours, 43minutes.

    Not exactly a huge difference.
    ——————————————

    What direct flight from Philadelphia to Jacksonville is taking almost 6 hours? Is that on the Wright Brothers original plane?

  32. cardinealsfan20 says:

    Direct flight from Philadelphia to London- $774. Travel time 6 hours, 15 minutes. Flight from Philadelphia to Jacksonville- $588. Travel time 5 hours, 43minutes.

    ———–

    I’m not an expert and I’m not the one who would fly from PHI to JAC, but have you ever heard of Google Flight? It could save you a lot of time and money…

  33. Michael E says:
    October 15, 2018 at 12:48 pm
    I’ve been to the UK and every person I’ve seen wearing NFL gear were wearing Cowboys stuff. ———————————

    And yet according to NFLshop the two top selling team jerseys in the UK are the Pats and the Giants and have been for the past 3 years, (btw the Eagles moved into the 3 slot this year). Once again it seems the bs is the only thing that’s truly bigger in Texas

  34. When the London game started in was 1 game a year. The NFL treated the game as a ‘big deal’. The game was on ‘air’ TV. I believe the games was recorded and replay at the NFL regular time. The teams quickly hated the London game.
    ________________________________________________________

    This is straight up false, the early games were all played in the usual 1pm est game slot so they weren’t recorded and played later. The early ‘morning’ games are a more recent thing and are now mixed in with normal start times in the international series schedule.

  35. “What direct flight from Philadelphia to Jacksonville is taking almost 6 hours? Is that on the Wright Brothers original plane?”

    That’s not a direct flight smart guy, it is a one stop. If you want a direct flight it is going to cost you a lot more than a direct flight to London. I was trying to give the original poster as much benefit of the doubt as possible. However, if you want to make his original point even more incorrect please, use the direct flight option.

  36. “I’m not an expert…but have you ever heard of Google Flight. It could save you a lot of time and money.”
    _________

    “I’m not an expert” translates to “I don’t know anything about booking flights, but I thought I’d tell someone else how to do it because I read about a particular service”.

  37. Just stop having games in London, period! Waste of time with a poor product! Those fans don’t know the difference.

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