London Calling (by 2022)

pockmeister

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 4, 2006
372
London, England
The BBC reporting that the NFL have "committed" to a permanent franchise for London within the next 6 years

The UK will have its own American football franchise within six years, according to NFL spokesman Mark Waller.

London's Wembley Stadium has hosted regular-season NFL games since 2007, with Jacksonville Jaguars playing one home game a season there since 2013.

But this is the first time the sport's governing body has committed to a franchise permanently based in Britain.

"The fan base is big enough and passionate enough that it can support a franchise," said Waller
The wording still seems somewhat vague, but unlikely the BBC would have reported this so clearly if the commitment wasn't clear.

So if this is happening - are we talking NFL expansion, or some relocation? The Jags have been the obvious candidates for some time, given their current arrangements with London but the article questions whether Shahid Khan is interested in doing this.
 

( . ) ( . ) and (_!_)

T&A
SoSH Member
Feb 9, 2010
5,294
Providence, RI
Every owner of a team unhappy with his stadium is nodding his head right now. London is the new LA as leverage to squeeze dollars out for a new stadium or stadium upgrades.

But (and sorry if this derails things) now that the Rams, Chargers, Atlanta, Vikings and Possibly Raiders have resolved stadium issues who in the NFL is actually in an older stadium that is no longer suitable?

I'm sure they would all love more luxury boxes and amenities. But does any NFL team now play on a stadium now that would generally be called a dump?

Buffalo? The dome in New Orleans is older right? Arrowhead is an older stadium. The Redskins talk about wanting a new stadium in DC but I thought that was just vanity and lust from Snyder.

The landscape of NFL stadiums seems pretty strong at the moment.
 

Dr. Gonzo

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 8, 2010
2,686
Every owner of a team unhappy with his stadium is nodding his head right now. London is the new LA as leverage to squeeze dollars out for a new stadium or stadium upgrades.

But (and sorry if this derails things) now that the Rams, Chargers, Atlanta, Vikings and Possibly Raiders have resolved stadium issues who in the NFL is actually in an older stadium that is no longer suitable?

I'm sure they would all love more luxury boxes and amenities. But does any NFL team now play on a stadium now that would generally be called a dump?

Buffalo? The dome in New Orleans is older right? Arrowhead is an older stadium. The Redskins talk about wanting a new stadium in DC but I thought that was just vanity and lust from Snyder.

The landscape of NFL stadiums seems pretty strong at the moment.
I was going to say Jacksonville but they made some recent improvements to their stadium

In November 2013, Jacksonville's City Council approved $63 million in improvements to EverBank Field. Renovations included two end zone video scoreboards 362-foot-long that are the largest HDLED of their kind in the world, a platform area in the north end zone with two wading pools, unique food and beverage offerings, interactive activities, and 55,000 square feet of HD video screens, which is a world record for a stadium.[24] Construction of the platform resulted in the removal of approximately 7,000 seats, though temporary seating can be installed for major events that will require a larger stadium capacity. During the construction a live webcam was set up to view the progress of the new video scoreboards.[25] The scoreboards were publicly unveiled on July 26, 2014.[26]
 

Ed Hillel

Wants to be startin somethin
SoSH Member
Dec 12, 2007
26,926
Here
This is so fucking stupid. That franchise is going to have absolutely no chance of success, given the insane travel and time zone differences. Adds stress to their opponents, as well. Stupid stupid stupid.
 

Hoya81

Member
SoSH Member
Feb 3, 2010
5,228
Jacksonville seems most likely for a move. Shad Khan already owns a English soccer team based in London. They wouldn't even have to change the name.

But it would likely require some serious realignment in the AFC. A London team would make the most sense in the AFC East, with Miami moving to the AFC south, but I'm not sold on Miami or the NFL giving up the existing rivalries. Maybe move the Bills to the AFCN, Cincinnati to the AFCS and Jaguars to the AFCE.
 

pockmeister

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 4, 2006
372
London, England
This is so fucking stupid. That franchise is going to have absolutely no chance of success, given the insane travel and time zone differences. Adds stress to their opponents, as well. Stupid stupid stupid.
The timezone difference is 5 hours between London and the east coast. That's only 2 hours more than east coast to west coast US, so far from insurmountable. And you'd have to assume that travel would be contained to some degree - perhaps a model of alternating 2 weeks on the road in the US, 2 weeks at home London. That would seem manageable, assuming luxury charters on the trans-Atlantic flights, and 2 training bases for the franchise - one in London, one in the US.

Perhaps one of the biggest attractions is for the NFL to extend the Sunday TV schedule, by having regular London "breakfast football" for east coast audiences. The last few London games have tested this model - early afternoon kick-offs have worked for the UK audiences, and I'm assuming morning games for US viewers have been helpful for broadcasters
 

Toe Nash

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 28, 2005
4,771
02130
Larger concern is their divisional opponents, who would be at a competitive disadvantage w/r/t the wild card and tiebreakers.
 

Philip Jeff Frye

Member
SoSH Member
Oct 23, 2001
7,830
This is so fucking stupid. That franchise is going to have absolutely no chance of success, given the insane travel and time zone differences. Adds stress to their opponents, as well. Stupid stupid stupid.
I'll echo this. And the team is going to be at a serious disadvantage recruiting free agents, given significantly higher tax rates in the U.K. Are they going to adjust the team's luxury cap to take care of that? And how exactly is television going to work? Sunday Night Football will kick off in the U.K. at 1:30 in the morning. Obviously, the London team is never hosting a Sunday night game, but do they never play at all?

And are the Brits really that into football? I know the Wembley games have drawn pretty well, but two or three games (that are big parties for all the ex-pats in London and which have benefitted from novelty factor) is a pretty different proposition than 8 regular season games, plus preseason and postseason games. I travel to London several times a year. I read the papers when I'm there. There's more coverage of the Premier League in the New York Times than there is of the NFL in the Times of London. Nobody cares that much. None of the Brits with whom I interact ask me about the NFL.

At best, this team will be people's second favorite team behind the soccer club they support. The banks will buy tickets to entertain clients, but I'll bet the overall ticket sales will be weak and the TV ratings will disappoint.
 

bankshot1

Member
SoSH Member
Feb 12, 2003
20,203
where I was last at
One franchise in London does not seem very workable for the time/travel and competitive reasons already listed. But London/Berlin might be a start (like LA/SF in the 1950s for baseball) and provide a starting point for true European NFL expansion.
 

Was (Not Wasdin)

family crest has godzilla
SoSH Member
Jul 26, 2007
2,586
The Short Bus
Jacksonville seems most likely for a move. Shad Khan already owns a English soccer team based in London. They wouldn't even have to change the name.

But it would likely require some serious realignment in the AFC. A London team would make the most sense in the AFC East, with Miami moving to the AFC south, but I'm not sold on Miami or the NFL giving up the existing rivalries. Maybe move the Bills to the AFCN, Cincinnati to the AFCS and Jaguars to the AFCE.
I think it would be funny if Cincinnati, the team that hosted the coldest game (by wind chill) in NFL history ends up in the AFC South.
 

Jed Zeppelin

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 23, 2008
40,812
Larger concern is their divisional opponents, who would be at a competitive disadvantage w/r/t the wild card and tiebreakers.
Take it a step further. Imagine this comes to fruition and London eventually builds a strong team and grabs a 4 seed or something. They are then hosting a playoff game one week after the season ends, with the winner having to travel to, say, Denver for the divisional round the following week.

I assume the league would plan to extend the season to be able to use more bye weeks to work around scheduling issues, but the playoffs would be even more of a nightmare.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

Well-Known Member
Silver Supporter
SoSH Member
Jan 23, 2009
13,908
Maine
Perhaps one of the biggest attractions is for the NFL to extend the Sunday TV schedule, by having regular London "breakfast football" for east coast audiences. The last few London games have tested this model - early afternoon kick-offs have worked for the UK audiences, and I'm assuming morning games for US viewers have been helpful for broadcasters
If this idea is one of the driving forces behind putting a team in London, wouldn't it be far easier to just schedule an east coast game at 9 or 10am each week? Sure, the morning start would be disruptive to player's routines, but it couldn't possibly be as disruptive as flying across the ocean for the same game. They already have teams from the west coast coming east and kicking off at 1pm Eastern/10am Pacific. Seems only fair to make some east coast teams start a game at 10am (on their internal clocks) once in a while.
 

BaseballJones

goalpost mover
SoSH Member
Oct 1, 2015
11,990
Consussions. Over-reaching authority by the Commissioner. 18-game schedule. London.

I know they're not trying to kill the golden goose, but man, it sure looks like they are.
 

Saints Rest

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
This is so fucking stupid. That franchise is going to have absolutely no chance of success, given the insane travel and time zone differences. Adds stress to their opponents, as well. Stupid stupid stupid.
The only way I could see it working -- and this seems silly -- is for a team to keep it's practice facilities in the US, presumably somewhere near a major international airport. Then both teams would fly out for each London home game, the way they do now when St. Louis, or Buffalo, or whoever is the "home team" while playing in London.

Otherwise, just bringing in street free agents would be extremely onerous. Not to mention trying to lure UFA's where they not only would need to deal with a move (as any UFA) would for his family, but also the change of culture, etc for the entire family. And lastly, there will always be the impact of exchange rates and tax structures.

I just can't see how this can ever make sense. Which means that it will DEFINITELY happen.
 
Jul 15, 2005
310
I think this shows that the owners/NFL leadership have very little interest in the health of the players or 'integrity of the game'. The whole thing is hugely unfair to the hypothetical London players and any west-coast teams that would play them. It messes up the playoffs with huge swings in time. It just screams to me the kind of thing someone with an eye on the bottom $$ line would do when they have precisely zero idea of what they are asking of the athletes. The only thing worse than this would be an 18 game schedule because that would impact every player instead of just some, though this is less fair to the league because of the potential impact upon the competitive balance.

Final thought: the NFL had better get this done before the new CBA because I imagine the players union would put this on the table as a negotiation issue. Current CBA goes through 2020.
 

pockmeister

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 4, 2006
372
London, England
The only way I could see it working -- and this seems silly -- is for a team to keep it's practice facilities in the US, presumably somewhere near a major international airport. Then both teams would fly out for each London home game, the way they do now when St. Louis, or Buffalo, or whoever is the "home team" while playing in London.

Otherwise, just bringing in street free agents would be extremely onerous. Not to mention trying to lure UFA's where they not only would need to deal with a move (as any UFA) would for his family, but also the change of culture, etc for the entire family. And lastly, there will always be the impact of exchange rates and tax structures.

I just can't see how this can ever make sense. Which means that it will DEFINITELY happen.
That would seem to be the most viable solution. Boston is the quickest route to London - it can be under 6 hours east-bound with the jetstream. There are also a host of tax implications for professional athletes staying for extended periods, especially if they take local endorsements or prize money.

That said, it might do quite a few players and their families some good to spend part of their lives in a different country, and to get an appreciation of other ways of living. There are a lot of positives about being in London / Europe - although these would come down to lifestyle decisions and it's unlikely to be financially advantageous for players to live in the UK for extended periods.

It's probably worth noting that there are plenty of professional athletes who spend significant portions of their lives travelling around the world without impact on their performance or well-being. Tennis and golf are prime examples (admittedly not team sports), and lots of soccer players clock up the long-haul airmiles to play for their countries several sides a year, whilst earning their money in Europe or the US. Not ideal perhaps, but not impossible.
 

Saints Rest

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
That would seem to be the most viable solution. Boston is the quickest route to London - it can be under 6 hours east-bound with the jetstream. There are also a host of tax implications for professional athletes staying for extended periods, especially if they take local endorsements or prize money.

That said, it might do quite a few players and their families some good to spend part of their lives in a different country, and to get an appreciation of other ways of living. There are a lot of positives about being in London / Europe - although these would come down to lifestyle decisions and it's unlikely to be financially advantageous for players to live in the UK for extended periods.

It's probably worth noting that there are plenty of professional athletes who spend significant portions of their lives travelling around the world without impact on their performance or well-being. Tennis and golf are prime examples (admittedly not team sports), and lots of soccer players clock up the long-haul airmiles to play for their countries several sides a year, whilst earning their money in Europe or the US. Not ideal perhaps, but not impossible.
As to the bolded part, the big differences comparing those other sports to the NFL, are A) all competitors (golf, tennis) are undergoing the same challenges; and B) there is a long history (all the sports you mention) of playing abroad -- it's part of the culture of the sport.
 

Kliq

Member
SoSH Member
Mar 31, 2013
14,645
The only way I could see it working -- and this seems silly -- is for a team to keep it's practice facilities in the US, presumably somewhere near a major international airport. Then both teams would fly out for each London home game, the way they do now when St. Louis, or Buffalo, or whoever is the "home team" while playing in London.

Otherwise, just bringing in street free agents would be extremely onerous. Not to mention trying to lure UFA's where they not only would need to deal with a move (as any UFA) would for his family, but also the change of culture, etc for the entire family. And lastly, there will always be the impact of exchange rates and tax structures.

I just can't see how this can ever make sense. Which means that it will DEFINITELY happen.

A couple years ago Bill Barnwell wrote a piece on how a team in London would be viable and he used this argument. A team that plays in London wouldn't be based in London necessarily. I believe he suggested Virginia Beach would be a good location because it is on the East Coast, has direct flights to London and doesn't have a major team super close to it and you could in theory get fans from both London and Virginia Beach.

I still think it is a super dumb idea and the fact that there are so many problems plaguing the game right now and Goodell has put most of his focus on building a team in London and trying to frame one of its most popular players is just another sign of how grossly incompetent he is at his job.
 

Spacemans Bong

chapeau rose
SoSH Member
I've been to three NFL games at Wembley, I'd say 60% of the people there are British with another 10-15% from other parts of Europe. It's not an expats party at all, it's more like a ComicCon for European/British NFL fans. I think many expats, especially longer term ones like me, are more inclined to only go when it's their team rather than every game that comes along. Hence I've only been to the two 49er games and a Pats-Bucs game.

But the problem with that model is that many British NFL fans are not necessarily neophytes. The game's been on TV here in some form since the 1980s and many British fans are seriously dedicated fans of one particular team (due to their success in the 80s, the Niners had the vast majority of support in both of their games). I can't see a model where a London franchise works without those fans changing allegiances, and many British NFL fans are NOT switching teams to the Jaguars.

Quite a few of them are opposed to the exercise period, as they (probably rightly) think that if a franchise fails there goes regular season football games forever.
 

edmunddantes

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 28, 2015
4,737
Cali
The other team I saw represented a lot when I used to go over there regularly for work (early 2000's) were the Dolphins. A lot of Dolphins' fans out of the Marino years.

Maybe it was the area I was in (Hammersmith), but that was the team I saw represented the most when I went out to bars to try to catch games.
 

pokey_reese

Well-Known Member
Gold Supporter
SoSH Member
Jun 25, 2008
14,740
Eugene, OR
As far as scheduling, it probably wouldn't be that hard to just make sure that the team that goes and plays in London each week has their bye the following week, which would take care of the middle of the season, and before and after the by period you have the London team play back-to-back away games (which happen on the schedule anyhow for everyone), so they can stay acclimated to time zones... It's doable, even though I don't know if it's valuable.
 

Dehere

Member
SoSH Member
Apr 25, 2010
3,143
The wording of the BBC story has already been revised to omit the word "committed". It now quotes Waller saying he "fundamentally believes" the league is on track to have a team in London within six years.
 

djbayko

Well-Known Member
Gold Supporter
SoSH Member
Jul 18, 2005
15,161
Waltham, MA
The only way I could see it working -- and this seems silly -- is for a team to keep it's practice facilities in the US, presumably somewhere near a major international airport. Then both teams would fly out for each London home game, the way they do now when St. Louis, or Buffalo, or whoever is the "home team" while playing in London.

Otherwise, just bringing in street free agents would be extremely onerous. Not to mention trying to lure UFA's where they not only would need to deal with a move (as any UFA) would for his family, but also the change of culture, etc for the entire family. And lastly, there will always be the impact of exchange rates and tax structures.

I just can't see how this can ever make sense. Which means that it will DEFINITELY happen.
I guess that helps even things out a little, but what do you do for B2B home games in London? Do you make them fly back and practice in the U.S. in between? That's ridiculous. Also, I'm not sure that's very fair to the London team in the first place. They should have the same option of practicing at home that every other team enjoys. It's never going to be perfectly fair. Trying to engineer some sort of handicap seems problematic.
 

djbayko

Well-Known Member
Gold Supporter
SoSH Member
Jul 18, 2005
15,161
Waltham, MA
As far as scheduling, it probably wouldn't be that hard to just make sure that the team that goes and plays in London each week has their bye the following week, which would take care of the middle of the season, and before and after the by period you have the London team play back-to-back away games (which happen on the schedule anyhow for everyone), so they can stay acclimated to time zones... It's doable, even though I don't know if it's valuable.
Take that same formula and add in Thursday night games after the bye.
 

Spacemans Bong

chapeau rose
SoSH Member
The other team I saw represented a lot when I used to go over there regularly for work (early 2000's) were the Dolphins. A lot of Dolphins' fans out of the Marino years.

Maybe it was the area I was in (Hammersmith), but that was the team I saw represented the most when I went out to bars to try to catch games.
80s teams are very popular, that's when Channel 4 had a highlights show/NFL Game of the Week-type operation that did really well back when there were only four channels and soccer was only sporadically shown on TV. The Bears and Raiders are also big, while the Cowboys have a comparatively small fanbase due to the early 90s being a difficult period for TV coverage. The Pats are probably the most popular now due to so many fans from the 00s glomming on to them, but teams that were good in the 80s would make up the rest of the top five.

The Raiders are the most interesting team in this, they actually have a decent number of fans here and they're looking for a home.
 

8slim

Member
SoSH Member
Nov 6, 2001
16,414
Unreal America
From what I understand, Goodell has promised continued rapdily escalating revenue figures for his owners. And there is no way that he can fulfill on that promise without substantial increases in the league's TV deals. Hence you're seeing things like new Thursday night packages put up for bid, streaming games put up for bid, etc. An expansion team in London would theoretically generate more revenue by growing the TV rights fee in the UK substantially.

Roger has both of his beefy arms wrapped tight around the Golden Goose's neck and he's squeezing for all it's worth.
 

Jed Zeppelin

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 23, 2008
40,812
Take that same formula and add in Thursday night games after the bye.
Bye weeks are among the least complicated issues facing this but would still require a fundamental change. I know this isn't how it would end up looking but it was funny to think about. Under the current format, the byes occur in weeks 4-11, so to accommodate every team getting a bye after the long trip, London would have to play 8 consecutive home games from wks 3-10 and thus finish the season on a 6 week road trip.

A London team basically requires a longer season, and no matter what the playoffs would be a cluster****.
 

BusRaker

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 11, 2006
948
Us West Coast Pats fans already wake up and head to the bar at 10am. If they were to play at 7am PST ?!?!?
 

johnmd20

mad dog
Lifetime Member
Gold Supporter
SoSH Member
Dec 30, 2003
48,548
New York City
From what I understand, Goodell has promised continued rapdily escalating revenue figures for his owners. And there is no way that he can fulfill on that promise without substantial increases in the league's TV deals. Hence you're seeing things like new Thursday night packages put up for bid, streaming games put up for bid, etc. An expansion team in London would theoretically generate more revenue by growing the TV rights fee in the UK substantially.

Roger has both of his beefy arms wrapped tight around the Golden Goose's neck and he's squeezing for all it's worth.
That is accurate. And he's going to squeeze it dry.
 
Dec 21, 2015
1,410
Consussions. Over-reaching authority by the Commissioner. 18-game schedule. London.

I know they're not trying to kill the golden goose, but man, it sure looks like they are.
Entertainment industries, like human relationships, are never static - they are either growing or shrinking. If you're not doing everything you can think of to expand your audience and deepen your appeal, then by sheer inertia, other forces and general attrition are causing your business to contract.

Neither Goodell nor any other sports commissioner (save, perhaps, Giamatti) is a mere caretaker, intending to casually oversee some rote set of processes and fixed extent of his league. They must, by sheer necessity and also the financial interests of their owners, look to grow the sport. I have plenty of criticisms of Goodell, but this isn't one of them.

Whether it'll work is a fair question, but I don't think you can fault him for trying. Size-wise, London's another Los Angeles, a metro area of ~14M people. It's a huge opportunity. Few of them grew up watching American Football, it's true, but the league started from scratch 50 and 80 years ago in the USA too. It's not unreasonable for them to try - and you have to agree that logistically, their one-game-a-week model suits a London expansion far better than it would, say, baseball or hockey or basketball.
 

bakahump

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Jan 8, 2001
6,721
Maine
I would love for the "Monarchs" to be in the AFC East.
Sure it would suck for 1 game a year for the Patriots. But I would also basically take 1 of your 3 (or 4) rivals for the division and put them in a no win position due to the travel they would endure weekly.
 

Saints Rest

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Entertainment industries, like human relationships, are never static - they are either growing or shrinking. If you're not doing everything you can think of to expand your audience and deepen your appeal, then by sheer inertia, other forces and general attrition are causing your business to contract.

Neither Goodell nor any other sports commissioner (save, perhaps, Giamatti) is a mere caretaker, intending to casually oversee some rote set of processes and fixed extent of his league. They must, by sheer necessity and also the financial interests of their owners, look to grow the sport. I have plenty of criticisms of Goodell, but this isn't one of them.

Whether it'll work is a fair question, but I don't think you can fault him for trying. Size-wise, London's another Los Angeles, a metro area of ~14M people. It's a huge opportunity. Few of them grew up watching American Football, it's true, but the league started from scratch 50 and 80 years ago in the USA too. It's not unreasonable for them to try - and you have to agree that logistically, their one-game-a-week model suits a London expansion far better than it would, say, baseball or hockey or basketball.
By that argument, Mexico City would make far more sense than London and eliminate all the time zone challenges.
 

mauf

Anderson Cooper × Mr. Rogers
Staff member
Dope
The prize for the NFL is a richer TV deal in the UK (and perhaps the rest of Europe). Assuming that prize will be shared equally among all the owners, the league will presumably subsidize the team that makes it possible by moving to London. Small stuff like travel or covering players' expat taxes won't sink the deal -- the ROI on will be obvious enough. The tough part will be building a stadium -- that's lots of money, and because it needs to be laid out up front, it's at risk if the venture is unsuccessful.

My guess is that the other owners agree to buy out Khan's lease in Jacksonville and provide him some kind of subsidies for a period of 3-5 years. The Jags would play home games at Wembley (or some other existing stadium) during that time; at the end, the owners will commit either to provide stadium funding in London or let him move the Jags to any U.S. city that doesn't have a team.
 
Dec 21, 2015
1,410
By that argument, Mexico City would make far more sense than London and eliminate all the time zone challenges.
I mean, GDP/Capita matters too, obviously. As does lifestyle, at least within certain bounds. Some players might gripe about being far from home, or the travel, or the taxes, but at least they'd be in a recognizably familiar culture with top living standards, safety, and English the primary language. But we know that MLB has at least strongly considered Mexico City, to take your particular example. With an unclaimed prize that big, lots of people can find reasons to try their hand at it.

It's certainly possible the opportunity represented by London won't be enough to get the owners and NFLPA to go along with it, or other logistical concerns will defeat it. All I'm arguing for is the idea that a responsible commissioner will be thinking about ideas like this and trying to make them work. As an entrepreneur yourself (industrial lighting? not sure I recall correctly), I imagine that mental flexibility and attitude are quite familiar. If he's not proposing a long string of things to improve the league's popularity and financial strength, at least 50% of which sound dumb and 75% of which end up not happening, I'd argue he's not doing the very basics of his job.

...and now that I've spent a few hundred words defending the actions of Roger Goodell, I'm going to go take a shower.
 

Spacemans Bong

chapeau rose
SoSH Member
There is no way in hell that the NFL builds a stadium in London. They will either play in Wembley, Tottenham's new ground, or the Olympic Stadium. Maybe Twickenham.

Spending £800 million on a stadium when there's four places to play is madness.
 

Apisith

Member
SoSH Member
Oct 19, 2007
2,525
Bangkok
Wembley would probably be the most viable. The two football stadiums will require juggling schedules with the two football teams, which will be difficult especially as the NFL runs through the time of the football league where it's busiest. Twickenham is of course another good option.
 

pockmeister

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 4, 2006
372
London, England
There is no way in hell that the NFL builds a stadium in London. They will either play in Wembley, Tottenham's new ground, or the Olympic Stadium. Maybe Twickenham.

Spending £800 million on a stadium when there's four places to play is madness.
Wembley would probably be the most viable. The two football stadiums will require juggling schedules with the two football teams, which will be difficult especially as the NFL runs through the time of the football league where it's busiest. Twickenham is of course another good option.
The most likely outcome would be some mix and match. Wembley as the main "home" ground, but with a few games a season at either the Olympic Stadium, the new White Hart Lane, or indeed Twickenham. Of those grounds, the two least utilised during the NFL season (at least by 2022 when West Ham are into the Olympic) are Wembley and Twickenham, and the fact that the NFL is playing a game at Twickenham later this year indicates interest in that direction. It's possible Chelsea would have a new stadium by 2022 as well, so there's no shortage of places to play within central London.

On a slightly less serious note, how about some nominations for the name of this London franchise. Would the old NFL Europe Monarchs moniker make a come back? How about the Redcoats, just to add some spice to games against the Pats...?
 

m0ckduck

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 20, 2005
1,168
I mean, GDP/Capita matters too, obviously. As does lifestyle, at least within certain bounds. Some players might gripe about being far from home, or the travel, or the taxes, but at least they'd be in a recognizably familiar culture with top living standards, safety, and English the primary language.
This is right, and why the possibilities for European expansion are pretty constricted. Language issues aside, Berlin— which somebody suggested above— wouldn't work for the reason that people wouldn't shell out 80 euro a ticket for entrance. You'd need a city with Munich's economy and Berlin's cultural and historical ties to Americana. London offers a unique opportunity in terms of a city that is very large, wealthy AND English-speaking.

On a slightly less serious note, how about some nominations for the name of this London franchise. Would the old NFL Europe Monarchs moniker make a come back? How about the Redcoats, just to add some spice to games against the Pats...?
The Redcoats would suit me fine. I would also enjoy it if the franchise did a heel turn and went with something like the Hooligans or the Curb-Stompers. The worst would be the London Fog.

Edit: the worst name in terms of trying to market the team successfully to an English audience would be the London Europeans. That would be epic.
 
Last edited:

NortheasternPJ

Member
SoSH Member
Nov 16, 2004
15,461
The most likely outcome would be some mix and match. Wembley as the main "home" ground, but with a few games a season at either the Olympic Stadium, the new White Hart Lane, or indeed Twickenham. Of those grounds, the two least utilised during the NFL season (at least by 2022 when West Ham are into the Olympic) are Wembley and Twickenham, and the fact that the NFL is playing a game at Twickenham later this year indicates interest in that direction. It's possible Chelsea would have a new stadium by 2022 as well, so there's no shortage of places to play within central London.

On a slightly less serious note, how about some nominations for the name of this London franchise. Would the old NFL Europe Monarchs moniker make a come back? How about the Redcoats, just to add some spice to games against the Pats...?
I don't think you can further handicap this team by rotating their home field to different stadiums. This is the NFL though so who know.
 

Jed Zeppelin

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 23, 2008
40,812
Clearly the solution to all these logistical issues is to make England a self-contained relegation league.
 

Gunfighter 09

wants to be caribou ken
Staff member
Dope
SoSH Member
Jul 31, 2005
8,079
KPWT
Spurs new stadium is being built to NFL spec, with two extra NFL sized locker rooms and a retractable pitch that will allow the soccer pitch to slide under the stands, revealing the field turf NFL field underneath. It should be the best "fit" for an NFL team in London based on the fact that it is the only stadium (of the many) in London that are designed with American football in mind.

The NFL has contracted to play twenty games over the next ten years at the new Tottenham stadium, but the extra cost that Spurs are putting into the stadium to accommodate the NFL, especially the retractable field, only really makes sense if they have a greater NFL presence.
 

steveluck7

Member
SoSH Member
May 10, 2007
3,531
Burrillville, RI
i don't know if a team would need practice facilities in the US but training camp may have to be over here. If not, we might get the owners their 18 game schedule with only 2 pre-season games. I can't imagine 2 teams traveling to London for pre-season games.