Canadians are watching a lot more American football

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The CFL season still hasn’t ended, but Canadians have taken to American football this year.

John Kryk of the Toronto Sun reports that the overall Canadian TV audience grew by 19 percent over the first two months of the season.

The biggest increase has come in the Sunday night window, where viewership has increased by a whopping 33 percent.

Those numbers take into account only the first eight weeks of the season. The numbers, especially on Sunday nights, likely will be similar if not bigger moving forward, given that Week Nine featured the Packers against the Patriots and Week 10 had the Cowboys facing the Eagles. The NFL has made three flex decisions from Week 11 through Week 14, resulting in the next four Sunday nights featuring Vikings-Bears, Packers-Vikings, Chargers-Steelers, and Rams-Bears.

38 responses to “Canadians are watching a lot more American football

  1. Good for the Canadians. Now tell them to get their fields the same dimensions as the NFL fields, make their rules the same as the NFL’s, and then compete for college players with the NFL so they can build up a better brand of football which could then compete with the NFL in a true Super Bowl. As long as they play the way they do, they’ll never be considered as anything more than a minor League.
    I’d love to see the NFL go up there or have their best team come down here and play in a North American championship game.

  2. This is true. Haven’t watched or been to a CFL game in more than 10 years. But give me a Browns Raiders game on a Thursday night and I’m all over it!!

  3. @nyneal couple points:

    1) If we did that the CFL would directly compete with the NFL on a multitude of levels and would fold rather quickly. Reason why it exists still after 150+ years is because its a different game, a more exciting game, and requires different players/skill sets than what the NFL requires. Also its our game just like Aussie Rules Football is their game and “American” Football is your game.
    2) We do compete for college players. No football player’s first choice is to play in U Sports, simply put if youre good enough and athletic enough you go down south. That goes for almost every sport.
    3) Just because you dont understand how the play the game and havent tried to learn doesnt make it a “minor league”.

  4. Pretty sure they used to have nfl vs cfl games way back when.

    Both leagues have their pros and cons. NFL presentation is much better due to more money and resources for TV

  5. @ajpeebles – CFL is not a more exciting game than NFL, and viewership shows that. Basically CFL to NFL is like rugby-sevens to rugby (only with more players) – i.e. there’s no real trenches ground-n-pound game, it’s all outfield tossing or scrambles. A nightmare shallow game that only exists today because Canadians have an identity crisis and want to show the world they’re different “this is our game, we’re NOT Americans, well we are but you stole the name for yourselves…” yada, yada. Well, you can keep it, but I bet most of your financially desperate league’s ownership would love to join the NFL and it’s rules.

  6. Well, there you go. Expect expansion teams in Canada, London, Berlin, China, Mexico,Japan, Honolulu, and Oakland. That will be an unwatchable dilution of talent. Folks, it’s all about the money.

  7. As a Canadian, I have been following the NFL exclusively since the early 80s. The CFL is gimmicky, with minor league level players, and absolutely ridiculous rules. Ask about No Yards, the Rouge, or why all the receivers are at full sprint when the ball is snapped. Also, all the teams are called the Roughriders. I would rather watch the Giants play the Raiders on Thursday, than watch 2 minutes of the Grey Cup. Personally, I wish the CFL would just fold, so we could get an NFL team in Toronto.

  8. CFL football might have a smaller audience, but they can still book a better Halftime Show than the NFL. Last year’s Grey Cup Halftime Show had Shania Twain entering the stadium by dog sled in the middle of a blizzard. It don’t get any more Canadian than that.

    Meanwhile the NFL will torture a few billion people this February with Marooned 5.

    Halftime Entertainment Advantage: CFL.

  9. Canada is more of a hockey country. Let’s just call a spade a spade here. The CFL can still be entertaining, but I always find myself watching more of the NCAA and NFL games. The CFL is actually quite comparable to the AFL (Arena Football League). Both leagues are not as popular and the players don’t earn as high of salaries, but they still present a new and interesting take to the sport of American football.

  10. I watched the CFL until 1984, when they reduced the salary cap for the entire team, including trainers and everybody else, to what amounted to one star NFL player’s contract.

    It’s a bush league with no future.

  11. ajpeebles says:
    November 17, 2018 at 10:07 am
    @nyneal couple points:

    1) If we did that the CFL would directly compete with the NFL on a multitude of levels and would fold rather quickly. Reason why it exists still after 150+ years is because its a different game, a more exciting game, and requires different players/skill sets than what the NFL requires. Also its our game just like Aussie Rules Football is their game and “American” Football is your game.
    2) We do compete for college players. No football player’s first choice is to play in U Sports, simply put if youre good enough and athletic enough you go down south. That goes for almost every sport.
    3) Just because you dont understand how the play the game and havent tried to learn doesnt make it a “minor league”.

    —-

    Me likie this post there Canada. And you’re right. There are days when I think you – and the Aussies – put a better, more pure game on the field, and I am a lifelong NFL fan.

  12. Sure the CFL is bush league, but so is double A baseball compared to the major leagues, but there are people who still enjoy the show anyway.
    There is a reason why the CFL season finishes when the NFL season starts to get interesting, plus the fact that winter arrives earlier…
    Live and let live.

  13. Canadians like watching football,.. who knew, eh? Someone just woke up
    to the fact. Thing is, Canadians have always been watching the NFL.

    Spike of 19% or 33% probably means the way they measured audiences has
    changed to better reflect the true numbers. Someone noticed the numbers
    are substantial, and are now gauging ways how to monetize it, and profit.

    Bush league? stop making fun of the CFL. It can be a very exciting game.
    As a matter of fact, it’s the NFL that has been changing its rules to make it
    a more pass-friendly league, just like what the CFL has always been.

    Biggest difference is the billions of dollars from the networks and advertisers
    to allow them to attract and pay for top talent. The game itself is exciting.

  14. I’ve been to 2 Bills games already this year. Half the people in the stadium at any given game are from Southern Ontario.

  15. I spent a few months in Toronto on business a few years ago and my experience was that they could care less about what they called ‘American football.’

    Sports bars (like Jack Astor’s) wouldn’t even put all the NFL games on because they had to reserve tv’s for people there watching obscure soccer matches, rugby, etc.

    So, carrying the “let’s globalize the NFL” torch for the league . . . I ain’t buyin it. I’ve had boots on the ground. I’ve seen the lack of enthusiasm.

  16. babygaga19 says:

    November 17, 2018 at 11:08 am

    Well, there you go. Expect expansion teams in Canada, London, Berlin, China, Mexico,Japan, Honolulu, and Oakland. That will be an unwatchable dilution of talent. Folks, it’s all about the money.

    ———

    Oakland ??lmao
    China isnt happening with hightened tensions with them.
    Mexico isnt gonna happen with their venues being inept and kidnapping.no players would wanna live there.
    Japan wouldnt happen either.

    With that being said I could see San Diego again because their us a billionaire there named Joesph Tsai.He was part of group who tried to buy panthers and he owns 49% of brooklyn nets ad gains controlling interest in 5 yrs.He has clout and money for funding an NFL stadium.net worth about 8.6 billion dollars.

    I could also see Nfl in canada Toronto/Vancouver/Montreal.My brother lives up there and its a huge metropolitan city.

    I would say San Antonio,but it would never happen because jerry jones and bob mcnair have too much pull and would block it.

    St.Louis could support a team still with a new stadium.

  17. Safe bet that 95% of the negative comments listed above re the CFL are from people residing
    in Toronto. The same city that doesn’t support football at any level, but somehow believes they deserve an NFL franchise. There is a lot of bitterness going on now as those people are starting to realize that there is Zero chance the NFL would come north.

  18. bearaholic1 says:
    November 17, 2018 at 10:27 am
    Yes we are…and we celebrate American thanksgiving too !!!

    ————————-

    I get it…who doesn’t like Turkey and stuffing, am I right?

  19. akaodoyle says:
    November 17, 2018 at 11:23 am
    As a Canadian, I have been following the NFL exclusively since the early 80s. The CFL is gimmicky, with minor league level players, and absolutely ridiculous rules. Ask about No Yards, the Rouge, or why all the receivers are at full sprint when the ball is snapped. Also, all the teams are called the Roughriders. I would rather watch the Giants play the Raiders on Thursday, than watch 2 minutes of the Grey Cup. Personally, I wish the CFL would just fold, so we could get an NFL team in Toronto.
    ———————————————————————————–
    Oh yes, it’s the CFL standing in the way of the NFL in Toronto. Trust me, the reasons of why the NFL hasn’t come to Toronto go Much, Much deeper than the CFL. Perhaps the fact that Toronto hasn’t supported football for decades at ANY level might have something to do with it. No junior football, no high school football, no university football, brutal CFL support and a laughable Bills in Toronto fiasco. As London sells out games in 24 hours, Toronto “fans” will provide a long list of excuses of why it was such an embarrassment.
    The same article in today’s Toronto Sun has a brief interview with Maryann Turcke, the NFL’s Chief Operating Officer. Questions were asked regarding the NFL in Toronto. Such an amazing tap dance she should go into politics. Not a chance the NFL comes to Toronto, no chance at all. All the teams are called the Roughriders? Think you might be watching a different league.

  20. Weird to see so much hate for Canada. I live in China, my ex-gf is Chinese, she liked to say that god clearly blessed the USA because we have such great neighbors; in contrast, China shares borders with Russia and North Korea, among others.

    Be nice to Canada.

  21. aj66shanghai says:
    November 17, 2018 at 4:49 pm
    Weird to see so much hate for Canada. I live in China, my ex-gf is Chinese, she liked to say that god clearly blessed the USA because we have such great neighbors; in contrast, China shares borders with Russia and North Korea, among others.

    Be nice to Canada.
    ————————————

    Why would we not be nice to Canada? They gave us John Candy and Justin Beib…………. They gave us John Candy!!

  22. As a Vikings fan, I have to give credit to Syd Davy and his wife who have missed only a few games since 1986. The guy is an icon to anyone watching the game because you can’t miss his painted purple face, horned helmet, chainmail and vWo belt around his waist. They make a 500-mile trek from Winnipeg, Manitoba.

  23. Liberalsruineverything says:

    Is it true that Canadians ride Moose to work, eat at Tim Hortons everyday and sleep with their hockey sticks? Asking for a friend….
    *************************************************************************************
    Is it true that Americans don’t work, eat at at McDonald’s everyday and sleep with their guns? Asking for a friend….

  24. I looked for CFL on ESPN (mobile)… it was last on the list… after Special Olympics, Cricket, and Rugby. LOL

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