National Football League
Professional American football league National Football League Current season, competitors or edition:
No. of groups 32
Country United States [A] Park Avenue New York City NY Tampa Bay Buccaneers Green Bay Packers [B] TV partner(s) United States:
Fox NBC ESPN NFL Network Telemundo Deportes Broadcasters Authorities website
consisting of 32 teams, divided similarly in between the National Football Conference (NFC) and the Football Conference (AFC). The NFL is one of the 4 major North American expert sports leagues, the highest professional level of American football on the planet.
eighteen-week routine season ranges from early September to early January, with each team playing seventeen games and having one bye week. Following the conclusion of the regular season, 7 teams from each conference (four division winners and 3 wild card teams) advance to the playoffs single-elimination competition culminating in the Super Bowl, which is generally held on the first Sunday in February and is played between the champs of the NFC and AFC. The league is headquartered in New york city City The NFL was formed in 1920 as the American Expert Football Association (APFA) prior to relabeling itself the National Football League for the 1922 season. After at first identifying champions through end-of-season standings, a playoff system was implemented in 1933 that culminated with the NFL Championship Game till 1966. Following an arrangement to combine the NFL with the competing American Football League (AFL), the Super Bowl was initially kept in 1967 to determine a champion between the best groups from the 2 leagues and has remained as the last video game of each NFL season considering that the merger was completed in 1970.
Today, the NFL has the greatest average participation (67,591) of any expert sports league in the world and is the most popular sports league in the United States.
The Super Bowl is also amongst the most significant club sporting occasions worldwide, with the private video games accounting for much of the most watched tv programs in American history and all inhabiting the Nielsen's Top 5 tally of the all-time most viewed U.S. tv broadcasts by 2015.
The NFL is the most affluent expert sports league by revenue and the sports league with the most important teams.
Green Bay Packers hold the most combined NFL championships with thirteen, winning nine titles before the Super Bowl period and 4 Super Bowls afterwards. Since the development of the Super Bowl, the Pittsburgh Steelers New England Patriots both have one of the most championship titles at six.
Founding and history
On August 20, 1920, a meeting was held by agents of the Akron Pros Canton Bulldogs Cleveland Indians Dayton Triangles Jordan Hupmobile car display room in Canton, Ohio This conference led to the formation of the American Specialist Football Conference (APFC), a group who, according to the Canton Evening Repository, planned to raise the standard of professional football in every method possible, to remove bidding for gamers between competing clubs and to protect cooperation in the development of schedules.
Another conference was held on September 17, 1920 with representatives from groups 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 relabelled to the American Expert Football Association (APFA).
The league elected Jim Thorpe as its very first president, and included fourteen groups (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 conference, but did not field a team in 1920. Just 2 of these groups, the Decatur Staleys (now the Chicago Bears) and the Chicago Cardinals (now the Arizona Cardinals), stay in the NFL.
Akron Pros won the first APFA (NFL) Championship in 1920.
Although the league did not keep official standings for its 1920 inaugural season and groups played schedules that consisted of non-league challengers, the APFA awarded the Akron Pros the champion by virtue of their The very first event 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 occurred.
The following season resulted in 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) tied for first in the league standings.
At the time, groups were ranked on a single table and the group with the highest winning portion (not consisting of ties, which were not counted towards the standings) at the end of the season was declared the champ; the only tiebreaker was that in case of a tie if two teams played twice in a season, the outcome of the 2nd video game figured out the title (the source of the 1921 debate). This approach had been used since the league's production in 1920, however no situation had actually been come across where 2 groups were tied for first. The league rapidly identified that a playoff game between Chicago and Portsmouth was required to decide the league's champ. The groups were originally scheduled to play the playoff game, officially a regular-season game that would count towards the routine season standings, at Wrigley Field in Chicago, however a combination of heavy snow and severe cold forced the video game to be moved inside your home to Chicago Stadium, which did not have a regulation-size football field. Playing with altered rules to accommodate the smaller sized playing field, the Bears won the video game 9–-- 0 and thus won the champion. Fan interest in the de facto championship game led the NFL, starting in, to divide into 2 divisions with a championship game to be played between the division champions.
1934 season also marked the very first of twelve seasons in which African Americans were absent from the league. The de facto restriction was rescinded in, following public pressure and accompanying the removal of a comparable restriction Major League Baseball The NFL was constantly the biggest professional football league in the United States; it nonetheless dealt with many rival expert leagues through the 1930s and 1940s. Rival leagues consisted of at least 3 separate Football Leagues All-America Football Conference (AAFC), on top of numerous local leagues of varying caliber. 3 NFL teams trace their histories to these competing leagues, consisting of the Los Angeles Rams (who came from a 1936 version of the Football League), the Cleveland Browns San Francisco 49ers (the last two of which came from the AAFC). By the 1950s, the NFL had a reliable monopoly on expert football in the United States; its only competitors in The United States and Canada was the professional Canadian football circuit, which formally ended up being the Canadian Football League (CFL) in 1958. With Canadian football being a various football code than the American video game, the CFL developed a specific niche market in Canada and still makes it through as an independent league.
A new professional league, the fourth Football League (AFL), started to play in 1960. The upstart AFL began to challenge the established NFL in appeal, gaining financially rewarding tv agreements and engaging in a bidding war with the NFL for free agents and draft choices. The two leagues revealed a merger on June 8, 1966, to take complete effect in 1970. In the meantime, the leagues would hold a common draft and championship game. The game, the Super Bowl, was held 4 times before 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 merged, it was restructured into 2 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 groups along with 3 pre-merger NFL teams.
Today, the NFL is the most popular sports league in The United States and Canada; much of its development is attributed to former Commissioner Pete Rozelle, who led the league from 1960 to 1989. Total annual presence increased from 3 million at the beginning of his period to 17 million by the end of his tenure, and 400 million international viewers enjoyed 1989's Super Bowl XXIII The NFL developed NFL Properties in 1963. The league's licensing wing, NFL Residence makes the league billions of dollars every year; Rozelle's period also marked the creation of NFL Charities and a national partnership with United Method Paul Tagliabue was elected as commissioner to prosper Rozelle; his seventeen-year period, which ended in 2006, was marked by large increases in tv agreements and the addition of four growth teams, in addition to the introduction of league initiatives to increase the number of minorities in league and team management functions.
The league's current Commissioner, Roger Goodell, has actually concentrated on lowering the number of unlawful hits and making the sport safer, mainly through fining or suspending players who break rules.
These actions are amongst many the NFL is requiring to minimize concussions and enhance gamer security.
Season and playoff advancement
From 1920 to 1934, the NFL did not have a set variety of games for teams to play, instead setting a minimum. The league mandated a twelve-game routine season for each team beginning in, later on shortening this to eleven video games in and 10 games in, mainly due to World War II. After the war ended, the variety of games returned to eleven video games in, and later back to twelve in 1947. The NFL went to a fourteen-game schedule in, which it kept until changing to the present sixteen-game schedule in In March 2021, the NFL formally embraced a seventeen-game schedule after getting the agreement of the National Football League Players Association Having an odd number of games in the schedule will give half the teams nine video games as the home group while half the groups have just 8 home games. To reduce the perceived benefit on competition of having more house video games, the extra house video game will be turned between the 2 conferences each year. This is because playoff berths are assigned at the conference level, so all teams within the conference will have played the same variety of house games.
The NFL ran in a two-conference system from 1933 to, where the champions of each conference would satisfy in the NFL National Championship. If two teams tied for the conference lead, they would satisfy in a one-game playoff to figure out the conference champion. In, the NFL broadened from fifteen groups to sixteen teams. Instead of simply night out the conferences by adding the expansion New Orleans Saints to the seven-member Western Conference, the NFL straightened the conferences and divide each into 2 four-team departments. The 4 division champs would meet in the NFL playoffs, a two-round playoff.
The NFL likewise ran the Playoff Bowl (formally the Bert Bell Benefit Bowl) from 1960 to 1969. Efficiently a third-place video game, pitting the 2 conference runners-up versus each other, the league considers Playoff Bowls to have actually been exhibits rather than playoff games. The league terminated the Playoff Bowl in 1970 due to its perception as a game for losers.
Following the addition of the former AFL groups into the NFL in, the NFL split into two conferences with 3 divisions each. The expanded league, now with twenty-six groups, would also include an expanded eight-team playoff, the individuals being the 3 department champions from each conference as well as one 'wild card' team (the group with the best win percentage) from each conference. In 1978, the league added a 2nd wild card team from each conference, bringing the overall number of playoff groups to 10, and a further two wild card teams were added in to bring the total to twelve. When the NFL broadened to 32 teams in, the league straightened, changing the department structure from 3 divisions in each conference to four departments in each conference. As each department champ gets a playoff quote, the variety of wild card teams from each conference dropped from 3 to 2.
The playoffs broadened again in 2020, including 2 more wild card teams to bring the overall to fourteen playoff teams.
Roger Goodell At the business level, the National Football League considers itself a trade association comprised of and funded by its 32 member groups.
Up up until 2015, the league was an unincorporated nonprofit 501(c)( 6) Section 501(c)( 6) of the Internal Revenue Code supplies an exemption from federal earnings tax for Service leagues, chambers of commerce, real-estate boards, boards of trade, or expert football leagues (whether or not administering a pension fund for football players), not organized for profit and no part of the net profits of which inures to the advantage of any personal shareholder or individual..
On the other hand, each specific team (except the non-profit Green Bay Packers) undergoes tax because they make a profit.
The NFL gave up the tax-exempt status in 2015 following public criticism; in a letter to the club owners, Commissioner Roger Goodell labeled it a distraction, stating the results of the tax-exempt status of the league office have been mischaracterized repeatedly in the last few years ... Every dollar of income generated through television rights charges, licensing contracts, sponsorships, ticket sales, and other means is earned 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 change in filing status will make no material difference to our organization. As an outcome, the league office might owe around US$ 10 million in earnings taxes, however it is no longer needed to disclose the incomes of its executive officers.
The league has actually three defined officers: the commissioner, secretary, and treasurer. Each conference has actually one defined officer, the president, which is essentially an honorary position with couple of powers and mainly ceremonial duties, consisting of granting the conference championship prize.
The commissioner is chosen 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 chosen 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 employees. He is the primary executive officer of the NFL and also has authority in working with league employees, working out television agreements, disciplining individuals that own part or all of an NFL group, clubs, or utilized people of an NFL club if they have actually broken league bylaws or dedicated conduct damaging to the welfare of the League or expert football.
The commissioner can, in the event of misbehavior by a celebration related to the league, suspend people, hand down a fine of as much as US$ 500,000, cancel contracts with the league, and award or strip teams of draft choices.
In severe cases, the commissioner can provide suggestions to the NFL's Executive Committee approximately and including the cancellation or forfeiture of a club's franchise or any other action, he deems needed. The commissioner can also release sanctions as much as and consisting of a life time restriction from the league if a specific connected to the NFL has actually banked on video games or failed to notify the league of conspiracies or strategies to bet on or repair video games.
The current Commissioner of the National Football League is Roger Goodell, who was chosen in 2006 after Paul Tagliabue, the previous commissioner, retired.
NFL revenue is from three main sources: NFL Ventures (retailing), NFL Enterprises (NFL Network NFL Sunday Ticket, which the league controls), and the television agreement. The league distributes such profits similarly amongst groups, no matter efficiency. As of February 2019 [update], each team gets $255 million yearly from the league's tv contract, up 150% from $99.9 million in 2010.
A lot of NFL teams' financial statements are secret.
The Kansas City Star acquired the Kansas City Chiefs' tax returns for 2008–-- 2010. According to the Star, the team's income increased from $231 million in 2008 to $302 million in 2010. In 2010, two thirds of earnings originated 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 agreement. The remaining 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 contract ($2.7 million), and various sources.
The biggest Chiefs cost in 2010 was $148 million for gamers, coaches, and other workers. Of the $38 million in operating earnings, Clark Lamar Jr.
, two other children, and widow of previous team owner Lamar Hunt divided $17.6 million, and reinvested the remaining $20 million into the team.
According to economist Richard D. Wolff, the NFL's earnings design remains in contravention of the normal business structure. By rearranging earnings to all groups the NFL is ensuring that a person group will not control the league through extreme revenues.
Roger Noll described the earnings sharing as the league's crucial structural weakness, however, as there is no disincentive against a group playing terribly and the biggest expense product, player salaries, is topped.
AFC East AFC North AFC South AFC West Bills 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) ended up in 2nd place in the NFC South in 2021, the Buccaneers will play two video games versus each of its division rivals (highlighted in light blue), one game against each group in the NFC East AFC East (highlighted in yellow), one video game each versus the second-place finishers in the NFC North NFC West (highlighted in orange) and one video game against the group who ended up second in the AFC South (highlighted in pink).
Currently, the 14 challengers each group deals with over the 17-game routine season schedule are set using a pre-determined formula:
The league runs an 18-week, 272-game regular season. Considering 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 typically a home video game on a Thursday for the league's defending champ.
Many NFL video games are played on Sundays, with a Monday night video game usually held a minimum of when a week and Thursday night video games happening on most weeks also.
NFL games are not usually played on Fridays or Saturdays until late in the regular season, as federal law forbids professional football leagues from taking on college or high school football. Due to the fact that high school and college groups typically play games on Friday and Saturday, respectively, the NFL can not hold video games on those days till the Friday prior to the 3rd Saturday in December. While Saturday video games late in the season are common, the league rarely holds Friday games, the most current one being on Christmas Day in 2020.
NFL games are seldom arranged for Tuesday or Wednesday, and those days have just been utilized 3 times considering that 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 game was held off from Sunday to Tuesday due to players testing positive for COVID-19 NFL routine season matchups are determined according to a scheduling formula. Within a department, all 4 groups play 14 out of their 17 games against common opponents or each other–-- two games (house and away) are played against the other three teams in the division, while one game is held against all the members of a division from the NFC and a division from the AFC as identified by a rotating cycle (three years for the conference the team is in, and four years in the conference they are not in). 2 of the other games are intraconference games, figured out by the standings of the previous year –-- for instance, if a group ends up first in its division, it will play 2 other first-place groups in its conference, while a group that completes last would play 2 other last-place teams in the conference. The final video game is an inter-conference based on a turning cycle and identified by previous season's standings.
In overall, each team plays 17 games and has one bye week, where it does not play a video game.
Although a team's home and away challengers are known by the end of the previous year's regular season, the specific dates and times for NFL video games are not figured out until much later on due to the fact that the league has to represent, among other things, the Big league Baseball postseason and local events that might position a scheduling dispute with NFL games. During the 2010 season, over 500,000 prospective schedules were developed by computers, 5,000 of which were thought about playable schedules and were examined by the NFL's scheduling group. After reaching what they felt was the very best schedule out of the group, nearly 50 more prospective schedules were developed to try to guarantee that the selected schedule would be the very best possible one.