National Football League
Professional American football league National Football League Current season, competitors or edition:
No. of groups 32
Nation United States [A] Park Avenue New York NY Tampa Bay Buccaneers Green Bay Packers [B] TELEVISION partner(s) United States:
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including 32 teams, divided similarly between the National Football Conference (NFC) and the American Football Conference (AFC). The NFL is one of the four significant North American professional sports leagues, the highest professional level of American football in the world.
eighteen-week regular season runs from early September to early January, with each team playing seventeen video games and having one bye week. Following the conclusion of the regular season, seven teams from each conference (4 division winners and 3 wild card groups) advance to the playoffs single-elimination tournament culminating in the Super Bowl, which is normally hung on the very first Sunday in February and is played between the champs of the NFC and AFC. The league is headquartered in New York City The NFL was formed in 1920 as the American Expert Football Association (APFA) before relabeling itself the National Football League for the 1922 season. After at first identifying champs through end-of-season standings, a playoff system was carried out in 1933 that culminated with the NFL National Championship up until 1966. Following a contract to combine the NFL with the rival American Football League (AFL), the Super Bowl was first kept in 1967 to identify a champion between the very best groups from the two leagues and has actually stayed as the final video game of each NFL season since the merger was completed in 1970.
Today, the NFL has the highest average participation (67,591) of any expert sports league worldwide and is the most popular sports league in the United States.
The Super Bowl is also amongst the biggest club sporting events worldwide, with the specific video games representing many of the most watched tv programs in American history and all inhabiting the Nielsen's Top 5 tally of the all-time most watched U.S. tv broadcasts by 2015.
The NFL is the most affluent professional sports league by revenue and the sports league with the most important groups.
Green Bay Packers hold the most combined NFL champions with thirteen, winning 9 titles prior to the Super Bowl period and 4 Super Bowls afterwards. Given that the development of the Super Bowl, the Pittsburgh Steelers New England Patriots both have the most championship titles at 6.
Founding and history
On August 20, 1920, a conference was held by representatives of the Akron Pros Canton Bulldogs Cleveland Indians Dayton Triangles Jordan Hupmobile auto display room in Canton, Ohio This meeting resulted in the development of the American Specialist Football Conference (APFC), a group who, according to the Canton Night Repository, intended to raise the standard of expert football in every way possible, to get rid of bidding for gamers in between competing clubs and to secure cooperation in the formation of schedules.
Another conference was held on September 17, 1920 with agents from teams from four states: Akron, Canton, Cleveland, and Dayton from Ohio; the Hammond Pros Muncie Flyers from Indiana; the Rochester Jeffersons from New York; and the Rock Island Independents Decatur Staleys Racine (Chicago) Cardinals The league was renamed to the American Specialist Football Association (APFA).
The league chosen Jim Thorpe as its first president, and consisted of fourteen teams (the Buffalo All-Americans Chicago Tigers Columbus Panhandles Detroit Declares joined the league throughout the year). The Massillon Tigers Massillon, Ohio was likewise at the September 17 meeting, but did not field a team in 1920. Only two of these teams, the Decatur Staleys (now the Chicago Bears) and the Chicago Cardinals (now the Arizona Cardinals), remain in the NFL.
Akron Pros won the first APFA (NFL) Championship in 1920.
Although the league did not keep main standings for its 1920 inaugural season and teams played schedules that included non-league opponents, the APFA awarded the Akron Pros the champion by virtue of their The first occasion took place on September 26, 1920 when the Rock Island Independents defeated the non-league St. Paul Ideals 48–-- 0 at Douglas Park On October 3, 1920, the first full week of league play took place.
The following season led to the Chicago Staleys controversially winning the title over the Buffalo All-Americans.
On June 24, 1922, the APFA altered its name to the National Football League (NFL).
, the season ended with the Chicago Bears () and the Portsmouth Spartans) connected for first in the league standings.
At the time, groups were ranked on a single table and the team with the greatest gaining percentage (not including ties, which were not counted towards the standings) at the end of the season was stated the champ; the only tiebreaker was that in the event of a tie if two teams played twice in a season, the result of the 2nd game identified the title (the source of the 1921 controversy). This method had actually been utilized considering that the league's development in 1920, but no scenario had actually been encountered where two groups were tied for initially. The league quickly figured out that a playoff game in between Chicago and Portsmouth was required to decide the league's champ. The groups were originally arranged to play the championship game, formally a regular-season game that would count towards the regular season standings, at Wrigley Field in Chicago, however a mix of heavy snow and extreme cold required the game to be moved inside your home to Chicago Arena, which did not have a regulation-size football field. Playing with transformed rules to accommodate the smaller sized playing field, the Bears won the video game 9–-- 0 and hence won the championship. Fan interest in the de facto national championship led the NFL, starting in, to split into two departments with a championship game to be played in between the department champs.
1934 season likewise marked the first of twelve seasons in which African Americans were missing from the league. The de facto ban was rescinded in, following public pressure and coinciding with the removal of a comparable restriction Big league Baseball The NFL was constantly the biggest expert football league in the United States; it however dealt with many rival expert leagues through the 1930s and 1940s. Competing leagues consisted of a minimum of 3 different Football Leagues All-America Football Conference (AAFC), on top of different local leagues of varying quality. 3 NFL groups trace their histories to these rival leagues, including the Los Angeles Rams (who originated from a 1936 model of the Football League), the Cleveland Browns San Francisco 49ers (the last 2 of which came from the AAFC). By the 1950s, the NFL had an effective monopoly on professional football in the United States; its only competitors in North America was the expert Canadian football circuit, which officially ended up being the Canadian Football League (CFL) in 1958. With Canadian football being a different football code than the American video game, the CFL established a niche market in Canada and still survives as an independent league.
A new professional league, the 4th American Football League (AFL), began to play in 1960. The upstart AFL began to challenge the recognized NFL in popularity, gaining lucrative tv contracts and engaging in a bidding war with the NFL totally free representatives and draft choices. The two leagues announced a merger on June 8, 1966, to take full impact in 1970. In the meantime, the leagues would hold a common draft and national championship. The game, the Super Bowl, was held 4 times prior to the merger, with the NFL winning Super Bowl I Super Bowl II, and the AFL winning Super Bowl III Super Bowl IV After the league combined, it was restructured into two conferences: the National Football Conference (NFC), consisting of most of the pre-merger NFL groups, and the American Football Conference (AFC), including all of the AFL teams along with 3 pre-merger NFL teams.
Today, the NFL is the most popular sports league in North America; much of its development is credited to former Commissioner Pete Rozelle, who led the league from 1960 to 1989. Total annual presence increased from 3 million at the start of his tenure to 17 million by the end of his tenure, and 400 million international viewers viewed 1989's Super Bowl XXIII The NFL established NFL Properties in 1963. The league's licensing wing, NFL Residence earns the league billions of dollars yearly; Rozelle's period likewise marked the creation of NFL Charities and a national collaboration with United Method Paul Tagliabue was chosen as commissioner to succeed Rozelle; his seventeen-year tenure, which ended in 2006, was marked by big increases in television contracts and the addition of four growth groups, along with the introduction of league efforts to increase the variety of minorities in league and team management functions.
The league's current Commissioner, Roger Goodell, has concentrated on lowering the variety of unlawful hits and making the sport much safer, generally through fining or suspending players who break rules.
These actions are amongst numerous the NFL is requiring to decrease concussions and enhance player security.
Season and playoff development
From 1920 to 1934, the NFL did not have a set variety of games for teams to play, rather setting a minimum. The league mandated a twelve-game regular season for each team beginning in, later on shortening this to eleven video games in and 10 video games in, generally due to World War II. After the war ended, the variety of video games gone back to eleven video games in, and later back to twelve in 1947. The NFL went to a fourteen-game schedule in, which it maintained up until changing to the present sixteen-game schedule in In March 2021, the NFL formally embraced a seventeen-game schedule after acquiring the arrangement of the National Football League Players Association Having an odd number of games in the schedule will offer half the teams nine games as the house group while half the teams have just eight house video games. To decrease the perceived advantage on competitors of having more home video games, the extra home game will be turned in between the two conferences each year. This is due to the fact that playoff berths are allocated at the conference level, so all teams within the conference will have played the very same number of house games.
The NFL operated in a two-conference system from 1933 to, where the champions of each conference would fulfill in the NFL Championship Game. If 2 teams connected for the conference lead, they would fulfill in a one-game playoff to identify the conference champ. In, the NFL expanded from fifteen groups to sixteen groups. Rather of simply night out the conferences by including the expansion New Orleans Saints to the seven-member Western Conference, the NFL straightened the conferences and divide each into two four-team divisions. The four department champions would satisfy in the NFL playoffs, a two-round playoff.
The NFL likewise ran the Playoff Bowl (formally the Bert Bell Advantage Bowl) from 1960 to 1969. Efficiently a third-place game, pitting the 2 conference runners-up against each other, the league thinks about Playoff Bowls to have been exhibitions rather than championship game. The league discontinued the Playoff Bowl in 1970 due to its perception as a game for losers.
Following the addition of the former AFL teams into the NFL in, the NFL split into 2 conferences with 3 divisions each. The broadened league, now with twenty-six teams, would also include an expanded eight-team playoff, the participants being the 3 department champs from each conference in addition to one 'wild card' team (the team with the very best win portion) from each conference. In 1978, the league included a second wild card group from each conference, bringing the total number of playoff groups to ten, and a further 2 wild card teams were included to bring the total to twelve. When the NFL broadened to 32 groups in, the league straightened, changing the department structure from 3 departments in each conference to four divisions in each conference. As each division champ gets a playoff bid, the variety of wild card teams from each conference dropped from 3 to 2.
The playoffs expanded once again in 2020, including 2 more wild card groups to bring the total to fourteen playoff groups.
Roger Goodell At the corporate level, the National Football League considers itself a trade association comprised of and financed by its 32 member groups.
Up until 2015, the league was an unincorporated not-for-profit 501(c)( 6) Section 501(c)( 6) of the Internal Earnings Code provides an exemption from federal earnings tax for Organization leagues, chambers of commerce, real-estate boards, boards of trade, or professional football leagues (whether administering a pension fund for football players), not arranged for profit and no part of the net incomes of which inures to the advantage of any private investor or person..
In contrast, each individual group (other than the non-profit Green Bay Packers) is subject to tax since they make a profit.
The NFL quit the tax-exempt status in 2015 following public criticism; in a letter to the club owners, Commissioner Roger Goodell labeled it a diversion, saying the effects of the tax-exempt status of the league workplace have been mischaracterized repeatedly in recent years ... Every dollar of earnings created through tv rights costs, licensing agreements, sponsorships, ticket sales, and other methods is made by the 32 clubs and is taxable there. This will remain the case even when the league workplace and Management Council file returns as taxable entities and the modification in filing status will make no material difference to our service. As a result, the league workplace may owe around US$ 10 million in income taxes, but it is no longer required to reveal the wages of its executive officers.
The league has 3 defined officers: the commissioner, secretary, and treasurer. Each conference has actually one specified officer, the president, which is essentially an honorary position with few powers and mainly ceremonial tasks, including awarding the championship game trophy.
The commissioner is elected by the affirmative vote of two-thirds or eighteen (whichever is higher) of the members of the league, while the president of each conference is elected by an affirmative vote of three-fourths or 10 of the conference members.
The commissioner selects the secretary and treasurer and has broad authority in disputes in between clubs, players, coaches, and workers. He is the primary executive officer of the NFL and also has authority in hiring league employees, negotiating television agreements, disciplining individuals that own part or all of an NFL team, clubs, or employed people of an NFL club if they have actually broken league bylaws or committed conduct harmful to the welfare of the League or professional football.
The commissioner can, in the event of misconduct by a celebration connected with the league, suspend individuals, hand down a fine of up to US$ 500,000, cancel contracts with the league, and award or strip teams of draft choices.
In extreme cases, the commissioner can use suggestions to the NFL's Executive Committee as much as and consisting of the cancellation or forfeit of a club's franchise or any other action, he considers needed. The commissioner can also issue sanctions as much as and consisting of a lifetime restriction from the league if an individual linked to the NFL has bet on video games or failed to notify the league of conspiracies or strategies to bet on or repair games.
The existing Commissioner of the National Football League is Roger Goodell, who was elected in 2006 after Paul Tagliabue, the previous commissioner, retired.
NFL profits is from 3 primary sources: NFL Ventures (merchandising), NFL Enterprises (NFL Network NFL Sunday Ticket, which the league controls), and the tv agreement. The league distributes such earnings equally amongst groups, no matter performance. As of February 2019 [update], each group gets $255 million each year from the league's tv agreement, up 150% from $99.9 million in 2010.
The majority of NFL groups' monetary statements are secret.
The Kansas City Star acquired the Kansas City Chiefs' tax returns for 2008–-- 2010. According to the Star, the group's income increased from $231 million in 2008 to $302 million in 2010. In 2010, two thirds of profits came from the league: $99.8 million from NFL Ventures ($55.3 million) and NFL Enterprises ($44.6 million), and the $99.9 million share of the television contract. The staying one 3rd was from tickets ($42.4 million), corporate sponsorships ($6.6 million), food sales ($5 million), parking passes ($4.7 million), in-stadium marketing ($3.7 million), radio agreement ($2.7 million), and various sources.
The biggest Chiefs expenditure in 2010 was $148 million for players, coaches, and other employees. Of the $38 million in running income, Clark Lamar Jr.
, 2 other children, and widow of former team owner Lamar Hunt divided $17.6 million, and reinvested the remaining $20 million into the team.
According to financial expert Richard D. Wolff, the NFL's income design remains in conflict of the common business structure. By redistributing earnings to all groups the NFL is making sure that one group will not dominate the league through excessive profits.
Roger Noll explained the earnings sharing as the league's most important structural weakness, however, as there is no disincentive against a team playing terribly and the largest cost item, player salaries, is capped.
AFC East AFC North AFC South AFC West Expenses Steelers Titans Chiefs Dolphins Ravens Colts Raiders Patriots Browns Texans Chargers Jets Bengals Jaguars Broncos NFC East NFC North NFC South NFC West Washington Packers Saints Seahawks Giants Bears Buccaneers Rams Cowboys Vikings Panthers Cardinals Eagles Lions Falcons 49ers This chart of the 2020 season standings shows an application of the NFL scheduling formula. The Buccaneers in 2020 (highlighted in green) completed in second location in the NFC South in 2021, the Buccaneers will play 2 games against each of its department rivals (highlighted in light blue), one video game versus each team in the NFC East AFC East (highlighted in yellow), one game each against the second-place finishers in the NFC North NFC West (highlighted in orange) and one game against the team who finished second in the AFC South (highlighted in pink).
Presently, the 14 opponents each team faces over the 17-game regular season schedule are set utilizing a pre-determined formula:
The league runs an 18-week, 272-game routine season. Given that 2021, the season has actually begun the week after Labor Day (the very first Monday in September) and concluded the week after New Year.
The opening video game of the season is normally a house game on a Thursday for the league's protecting champ.
Many NFL video games are played on Sundays, with a Monday night video game usually held a minimum of as soon as a week and Thursday night games taking place on a lot of weeks as well.
NFL video games are not typically used Fridays or Saturdays until late in the routine season, as federal law prohibits expert football leagues from competing with college or high school football. Due to the fact that high school and college groups usually play games on Friday and Saturday, respectively, the NFL can not hold games on those days until the Friday prior to the third Saturday in December. While Saturday games late in the season are common, the league rarely holds Friday video games, the most recent one being on Christmas Day in 2020.
NFL video games are hardly ever scheduled for Tuesday or Wednesday, and those days have just been used 3 times because 1948: in 2010, when a Sunday video game was rescheduled to Tuesday due to a blizzard, in 2012, when the Kickoff video game was moved from Thursday to Wednesday to prevent dispute with the Democratic National Convention and in 2020, when a video game was postponed from Sunday to Tuesday due to gamers checking favorable for COVID-19 NFL regular season matchups are determined according to a scheduling formula. Within a department, all four teams play 14 out of their 17 video games against common challengers or each other–-- two video games (home and away) are played against the other 3 teams in the division, while one game is held against all the members of a division from the NFC and a department from the AFC as identified by a turning cycle (three years for the conference the team is in, and 4 years in the conference they are not in). 2 of the other games are intraconference video games, identified by the standings of the previous year –-- for example, if a group ends up first in its division, it will play 2 other first-place teams in its conference, while a group that completes last would play 2 other last-place teams in the conference. The last video game is an inter-conference based on a rotating cycle and identified by previous season's standings.
In total, each group plays 17 video games and has one bye week, where it does not play a game.
Although a team's home and away challengers are known by the end of the previous year's routine season, the specific dates and times for NFL video games are not figured out until much later because the league needs to account for, among other things, the Major League Baseball postseason and regional events that could posture a scheduling conflict with NFL games. Throughout the 2010 season, over 500,000 prospective schedules were created by computer systems, 5,000 of which were thought about playable schedules and were reviewed by the NFL's scheduling group. After getting to what they felt was the very best schedule out of the group, nearly 50 more prospective schedules were developed to attempt to make sure that the selected schedule would be the very best possible one.