National Football League
Expert 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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consisting of 32 teams, divided similarly between the National Football Conference (NFC) and the American Football Conference (AFC). The NFL is one of the 4 major North American professional sports leagues, the greatest professional level of American football worldwide.
eighteen-week regular season runs 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 groups from each conference (4 department winners and three wild card teams) advance to the playoffs single-elimination competition culminating in the Super Bowl, which is usually held on the very first Sunday in February and is played in 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 Professional Football Association (APFA) before relabeling itself the National Football League for the 1922 season. After at first identifying champions through end-of-season standings, a playoff system was executed in 1933 that culminated with the NFL National Championship up until 1966. Following a contract to merge the NFL with the competing American Football League (AFL), the Super Bowl was first kept in 1967 to identify a champion in between the very best teams from the two leagues and has actually stayed as the last video game of each NFL season considering that the merger was completed in 1970.
Today, the NFL has the highest average attendance (67,591) of any professional sports league worldwide and is the most popular sports league in the United States.
The Super Bowl is also amongst the biggest club sporting occasions worldwide, with the private video games accounting for many of the most watched television programs in American history and all occupying the Nielsen's Top 5 tally of the all-time most seen U.S. tv broadcasts by 2015.
The NFL is the wealthiest professional sports league by profits and the sports league with the most valuable groups.
Green Bay Packers hold the most combined NFL championships with thirteen, winning 9 titles prior to the Super Bowl age and 4 Super Bowls afterwards. Given that the creation 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 conference was held by agents of the Akron Pros Canton Bulldogs Cleveland Indians Dayton Triangles Jordan Hupmobile car showroom in Canton, Ohio This conference resulted in the development of the American Expert Football Conference (APFC), a group who, according to the Canton Evening Repository, meant to raise the requirement of expert football in every way possible, to eliminate bidding for gamers between rival clubs and to secure cooperation in the development of schedules.
Another conference was held on September 17, 1920 with representatives from groups from 4 states: Akron, Canton, Cleveland, and Dayton from Ohio; the Hammond Pros Muncie Flyers from Indiana; the Rochester Jeffersons from New York City; and the Rock Island Independents Decatur Staleys Racine (Chicago) Cardinals The league was renamed to the American Expert Football Association (APFA).
The league chosen Jim Thorpe as its first president, and included fourteen teams (the Buffalo All-Americans Chicago Tigers Columbus Panhandles Detroit Declares signed up with the league during the year). The Massillon Tigers Massillon, Ohio was also at the September 17 meeting, however did not field a team in 1920. Just two 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 very first APFA (NFL) Champion in 1920.
Although the league did not preserve main standings for its 1920 inaugural season and groups played schedules that consisted of non-league opponents, the APFA awarded the Akron Pros the champion by virtue of their The very first occasion happened 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 very first complete 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 changed its name to the National Football League (NFL).
, the season ended with the Chicago Bears () and the Portsmouth Spartans) connected for very first in the league standings.
At the time, teams were ranked on a single table and the team with the greatest winning percentage (not including 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 groups played twice in a season, the outcome of the 2nd video game figured out the title (the source of the 1921 debate). This method had actually been used given that the league's development in 1920, but no circumstance had actually been experienced where two teams were connected for initially. The league quickly identified that a championship game in between Chicago and Portsmouth was needed to choose the league's champ. The teams were initially scheduled to play the playoff game, officially a regular-season video game that would count towards the regular season standings, at Wrigley Field in Chicago, but a mix of heavy snow and extreme cold required the video game to be moved inside to Chicago Stadium, which did not have a regulation-size football field. Playing with altered rules to accommodate the smaller playing field, the Bears won the video game 9–-- 0 and therefore won the championship. Fan interest in the de facto national championship led the NFL, starting in, to split into two divisions with a national championship to be played between the division champions.
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 accompanying the removal of a similar ban Major League Baseball The NFL was constantly the largest professional football league in the United States; it nevertheless faced numerous rival professional leagues through the 1930s and 1940s. Competing leagues included at least three different American Football Leagues All-America Football Conference (AAFC), on top of various regional leagues of varying caliber. Three NFL groups trace their histories to these competing leagues, including the Los Angeles Rams (who originated from a 1936 iteration 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 a reliable monopoly on professional football in the United States; its only competition in The United States and Canada was the professional Canadian football circuit, which formally became the Canadian Football League (CFL) in 1958. With Canadian football being a various football code than the American game, the CFL developed a niche market in Canada and still endures as an independent league.
A brand-new professional league, the 4th Football League (AFL), started to play in 1960. The upstart AFL started to challenge the recognized NFL in popularity, gaining lucrative television contracts and taking part in a bidding war with the NFL totally free representatives and draft picks. The 2 leagues announced a merger on June 8, 1966, to take full effect in 1970. In the meantime, the leagues would hold a typical draft and championship game. The video game, the Super Bowl, was held four 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 rearranged into two conferences: the National Football Conference (NFC), including the majority of the pre-merger NFL groups, and the Football Conference (AFC), including all of the AFL groups as well as 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. General yearly attendance increased from 3 million at the start of his tenure to 17 million by the end of his period, and 400 million international audiences watched 1989's Super Bowl XXIII The NFL established NFL Characteristics in 1963. The league's licensing wing, NFL Properties earns the league billions of dollars each year; Rozelle's period likewise marked the production of NFL Charities and a nationwide collaboration with United Method Paul Tagliabue was chosen as commissioner to prosper Rozelle; his seventeen-year tenure, which ended in 2006, was marked by large boosts in television contracts and the addition of 4 expansion teams, along with the intro of league efforts to increase the number of minorities in league and group management roles.
The league's existing Commissioner, Roger Goodell, has focused on minimizing the variety of prohibited hits and making the sport much safer, generally through fining or suspending gamers who break guidelines.
These actions are amongst numerous the NFL is requiring to minimize concussions and enhance gamer safety.
Season and playoff advancement
From 1920 to 1934, the NFL did not have a set variety of video games for teams to play, instead setting a minimum. The league mandated a twelve-game regular season for each team start in, later on shortening this to eleven video games in and 10 games in, generally due to World War II. After the war ended, the number of games gone back to eleven games in, and later on back to twelve in 1947. The NFL went to a fourteen-game schedule in, which it maintained up until switching to the present sixteen-game schedule in In March 2021, the NFL formally adopted a seventeen-game schedule after acquiring the agreement of the National Football League Players Association Having an odd variety of video games in the schedule will provide half the teams 9 games as the home group while half the groups have only eight house video games. To lessen the perceived advantage on competition of having more home games, the additional house game will be rotated between the 2 conferences each year. This is due to the fact that playoff berths are designated at the conference level, so all groups within the conference will have played the very same number of house video games.
The NFL ran in a two-conference system from 1933 to, where the champs of each conference would meet in the NFL National Championship. If two teams connected for the conference lead, they would meet in a one-game playoff to identify the conference champion. In, the NFL broadened from fifteen groups to sixteen teams. Rather of simply evening out the conferences by adding the expansion New Orleans Saints to the seven-member Western Conference, the NFL realigned the conferences and split each into two four-team divisions. The four division champions would satisfy 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. Successfully a third-place video game, pitting the 2 conference runners-up against each other, the league considers Playoff Bowls to have been exhibitions rather than playoff games. The league discontinued 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 divided into 2 conferences with three departments each. The broadened league, now with twenty-six teams, would likewise include a broadened eight-team playoff, the individuals being the 3 division champions from each conference in addition to one 'wild card' group (the group with the very best win portion) from each conference. In 1978, the league included a second wild card group from each conference, bringing the overall variety of playoff groups to 10, and a further two wild card groups were added in to bring the total to twelve. When the NFL expanded to 32 teams in, the league realigned, changing the department structure from three departments in each conference to four departments in each conference. As each department champion gets a playoff bid, the variety of wild card teams from each conference dropped from 3 to two.
The playoffs broadened again in 2020, adding two more wild card teams to bring the total to fourteen playoff groups.
Roger Goodell At the business 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 nonprofit 501(c)( 6) Area 501(c)( 6) of the Internal Revenue Code offers an exemption from federal income tax for Organization leagues, chambers of commerce, real-estate boards, boards of trade, or professional football leagues (whether or not administering a pension fund for football gamers), not organized for earnings and no part of the net incomes of which inures to the benefit of any personal shareholder or person..
On the other hand, each individual group (other than the non-profit Green Bay Packers) is subject to tax since they earn 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, stating the effects of the tax-exempt status of the league workplace have actually been mischaracterized consistently over the last few years ... Every dollar of earnings produced through tv rights charges, licensing arrangements, sponsorships, ticket sales, and other methods is made by the 32 clubs and is taxable there. This will stay 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 distinction to our organization. As a result, the league office might owe around US$ 10 million in earnings taxes, however it is no longer needed to divulge the salaries of its executive officers.
The league has 3 specified officers: the commissioner, secretary, and treasurer. Each conference has one specified officer, the president, which is essentially an honorary position with couple of powers and primarily ceremonial tasks, including granting the conference championship trophy.
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 appoints 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 hiring league staff members, 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 broken league bylaws or devoted conduct destructive to the well-being of the League or professional football.
The commissioner can, in case of misconduct by a celebration associated with the league, suspend individuals, hand down a fine of up to US$ 500,000, cancel agreements with the league, and award or strip teams of draft picks.
In severe cases, the commissioner can offer 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 deems necessary. The commissioner can likewise provide sanctions approximately and including a life time ban from the league if an individual linked to the NFL has banked on games or failed to inform the league of conspiracies or plans to bank on or repair games.
The present Commissioner of the National Football League is Roger Goodell, who was elected 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 disperses such income similarly amongst groups, despite performance. As of February 2019 [update], each team receives $255 million each year from the league's tv agreement, up 150% from $99.9 million in 2010.
The majority of NFL teams' financial statements are secret.
The Kansas City Star obtained the Kansas City Chiefs' tax returns for 2008–-- 2010. According to the Star, the team's earnings rose from $231 million in 2008 to $302 million in 2010. In 2010, two thirds of profits 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 contract. The remaining one third was from tickets ($42.4 million), business sponsorships ($6.6 million), food sales ($5 million), parking passes ($4.7 million), in-stadium advertising ($3.7 million), radio contract ($2.7 million), and various sources.
The largest Chiefs cost in 2010 was $148 million for players, coaches, and other staff members. Of the $38 million in operating income, Clark Lamar Jr.
, two other kids, and widow of former team owner Lamar Hunt divided $17.6 million, and reinvested the remaining $20 million into the group.
According to financial expert Richard D. Wolff, the NFL's revenue model is in breach of the normal corporate structure. By redistributing profits to all groups the NFL is guaranteeing that a person group will not dominate the league through extreme profits.
Roger Noll explained the revenue sharing as the league's essential structural weakness, however, as there is no disincentive against a group playing severely and the largest expense item, gamer incomes, 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 displays an application of the NFL scheduling formula. The Buccaneers in 2020 (highlighted in green) finished in second location in the NFC South in 2021, the Buccaneers will play 2 video games versus each of its division competitors (highlighted in light blue), one video game against each team in the NFC East AFC East (highlighted in yellow), one video game each against the second-place finishers in the NFC North NFC West (highlighted in orange) and one game versus the group who finished second in the AFC South (highlighted in pink).
Presently, the 14 opponents each group faces over the 17-game regular season schedule are set using a pre-determined formula:
The league runs an 18-week, 272-game routine season. Since 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 house game on a Thursday for the league's protecting champion.
The majority of NFL video games are used Sundays, with a Monday night game usually held a minimum of once a week and Thursday night video games taking place on most weeks too.
NFL games are not generally played on Fridays or Saturdays until late in the routine season, as federal law restricts professional football leagues from competing with college or high school football. Due to the fact that high school and college groups normally play video games on Friday and Saturday, respectively, the NFL can not hold games on those days till the Friday prior to the 3rd Saturday in December. While Saturday games late in the season prevail, the league seldom holds Friday video games, the most current one being on Christmas Day in 2020.
NFL video games are seldom scheduled for Tuesday or Wednesday, and those days have only been used three times because 1948: in 2010, when a Sunday game was rescheduled to Tuesday due to a blizzard, in 2012, when the Kickoff video game was moved from Thursday to Wednesday to prevent conflict with the Democratic National Convention and in 2020, when a video game was delayed from Sunday to Tuesday due to players checking favorable for COVID-19 NFL regular season matches are figured out according to a scheduling formula. Within a division, all 4 teams play 14 out of their 17 games versus typical challengers or each other–-- two video games (house and away) are played against the other 3 groups in the division, while one video game is held versus all the members of a division from the NFC and a division from the AFC as determined by a turning cycle (three years for the conference the team is in, and four years in the conference they are not in). Two of the other games are intraconference video games, determined by the standings of the previous year –-- for example, if a group ends up first in its department, it will play two other first-place teams in its conference, while a team that finishes last would play two other last-place groups in the conference. The final video game is an inter-conference based upon a turning cycle and figured out by previous season's standings.
In total, each team plays 17 games and has one bye week, where it does not play a game.
Although a group's home and away challengers are understood by the end of the previous year's regular season, the exact dates and times for NFL games are not determined up until much later on due to the fact that the league needs to account for, among other things, the Major League Baseball postseason and regional events that could present a scheduling dispute with NFL games. Throughout the 2010 season, over 500,000 prospective schedules were produced by computers, 5,000 of which were thought about playable schedules and were evaluated by the NFL's scheduling team. After getting to what they felt was the very best schedule out of the group, almost 50 more possible schedules were developed to try to ensure that the picked schedule would be the very best possible one.