Report: NFL will require every team to play an overseas “home” game every 8 years

New York Giants v Miami Dolphins
Getty Images

With 17-game seasons on the horizon, teams will soon play nine home games every other year. But some of those “home” games will be far from home.

Ben Fischer of Sports Business Journal reports that the NFL plans to require every team to play a home game outside the United States at least once every eight years, with the home games being given up on a rotating basis starting in 2022.

That would guarantee at least four teams know in advance that they’re going to be playing away from home for one game. It wouldn’t necessarily preclude the NFL from playing more than four international games a year, as some teams are willing to volunteer to give up home games more than once every eight years. The Jaguars have signaled a commitment to playing a home game in London every year.

The NFL began playing in London every year in 2007, expanded to two London games in 2013, three in 2014 and four in 2017. The league also plans to play annually in Mexico City. Last year no international games were played because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but the international series is expected to return this year.

30 responses to “Report: NFL will require every team to play an overseas “home” game every 8 years

  1. That is crazy and unfair to those of us that attend every “home game”. Conveniently they will raise prices to cover the loss of revenue since my family is not willing to fly half way around the world to see my team play. Certainly they don’t expect me to pay a for a full season when my team will be playing outside of our home stadium.

  2. It’s a nice start to getting parity in who plays abroad. They need to go further and require a steady rotation of teams so that no 1 team is playing twice before others, cough Patriots, have played once. If the NFL wants to drive interest in the game there then they should also start scheduling good matchups.

  3. give canada more games. not just buffalo in toronto. minnesota in winnipeg, denver in alberta, seattle in vancouver

  4. They should make each of the 16 new games on the proposed 17-game schedule a neutral site game.

  5. So, for international games, does the “home” team get the gate receipts, or does the NFL pay them some other money to make up for the lost revenue of not actually having that home game?

  6. …… except, of course, the Packers. As America’s true team, a non-profit with true public ownership, EVERY game they play, whether or not in Green Bay, is a home game.

  7. Makes no sense to me why the NFL sends their teams to play international games. I know I hate it when the team I root for plays overseas.

  8. The only thing that is surprising is that with the 17th game the NFL hasn’t said that it will be used so that ALL teams play an international game every year.
    My guess is they are waiting for the 18 game season and they will mandate all teams play two international games each year. One as the home team and one as the visitors.
    I can definitely see the NFL trying to expand into mainland Europe (Germany), South America (Brazil), Australia, and the Far East (Japan).
    I’m not advocating it or saying I like the idea, but I can definitely see it as a long term plan by the league to keep growing.

  9. No matter how much you try, NFL.
    The rest of the world will never care about “american football”.

  10. Understand the NFL has publicly stated its goal is to achieve $25B in annual revenues by 2027. Everything you are seeing is in support of that goal. They know the current fan base isn’t likely to shrink, so they are taking steps to milk every last penny, including making changes that not all fans will like. And if it does shrink, well, then you need more $ per fan.

    A lot of changes will be coming that long-term fans may not appreciate.

  11. annapterp says:

    I just don’t get it. WHY?
    Becasue if the NFL doesnt grab these foreign markets and their interest someone else will develop a league if there is a profit to be made. You snooze you lose. And if you are in business to be successful your end goal should be to nix any competition and grow globally. Otherwise you become the AFL and get bought out by the larger entity.

  12. Azpackerfan was on to something the extra game to be played on a neutral site. Let say the browns or bengals play in Columbus. Maybe alternate years. Hell someone plays in St. Louis, Oakland and San Diego. Or in Cities that might be in Expansion, Austin, San Antonio or Sacramento Portland Oklahoma City. They play in college Stadiums. Just make sure the fields are NFL approved. I know this might be tough seeing how the owners are so greedy. But if they look at it they would they open more markets!

  13. It’s about marketing and the huge amount of money to be made. The sales of NFL (trademark) gear and items will increase franchise values. Billionaires making Billions.

  14. 32/8 = 4 homes games per year over seas?

    It will be interesting to see if that has an impact on over seas growth, I don’t think it will.

  15. What is unfair is certain franchises have essentially refused to give up a home game to play in London. Packers and Lambeau,Cowboys and Jerryworld.
    The pain needs to be spread around…evenly

  16. Why they don’t restrict the international games to just one a year is beyond me. They could even make it a touring style. One year in London, then Toronto, Mexico City, Tokyo, so on and so on. Make it a lottery, and reward season ticket fans somehow that miss out on a home game every great once in a while. There are ways to make this a good thing and still profitable.

  17. If the NFL is adamant in growing the game in Europe, why does the Super Bowl start so late in the evening?! It’s past midnight in Europe…the next “fertile” growth market; doesn’t give the impression that you care that much about them. Why not move the start of Monday night football and those Saturday night playoff games up so that everyone can watch them, too?

  18. Actually I was wrong. The Patriots have played in London TWICE while also playing once in Mexico City.

  19. If the Team’s stadium is tax-payer funded and the local politicians have a spine, this shouldn’t be an easy hard “No.”

  20. I’d be curious how many posters here are actual season ticket members. If you don’t go to the games, this only has an impact on what time you start drinking on Sundays.

  21. The Packers don’t want to give up a home game and their opponent doesn’t want to give up a sold-out Packer game.

  22. the only redeeming quality for these games to me is I get to watch a early Sunday game, that being said the NFL is all American and belongs only in America

  23. “Those who do not learn history are doomed to repeat it.” Someone needs to remind the NFL about “NFL Europe”. That league was not successful. It hemorrhaged money. The only reason it lasted 16 seasons because pride kept the NFL from admitting that it was a mistake.

    Other countries don’t love American football. Stop trying to force feed it to them. They are not just going to suddenly wake up some morning and be ravenous about it. They like their “football”, (which America calls “soccer”.)

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.