National Football League
Professional American football league National Football League Current season, competitors or edition:
No. of teams 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
including 32 teams, divided equally in between the National Football Conference (NFC) and the Football Conference (AFC). The NFL is among the four major North American expert sports leagues, the greatest professional level of American football in the world.
eighteen-week regular season ranges 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 (four division winners and 3 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 between the champions 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 renaming itself the National Football League for the 1922 season. After at first figuring out champs through end-of-season standings, a playoff system was carried out in 1933 that culminated with the NFL Championship Game until 1966. Following an arrangement to combine the NFL with the competing American Football League (AFL), the Super Bowl was initially held in 1967 to figure out a champion between the very best teams from the 2 leagues and has actually remained as the final video game of each NFL season considering that the merger was completed in 1970.
Today, the NFL has the greatest average attendance (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 likewise among the biggest club sporting occasions in the world, with the private video games representing many of the most watched tv programs in American history and all occupying the Nielsen's Leading 5 tally of the all-time most enjoyed U.S. tv broadcasts by 2015.
The NFL is the most affluent professional sports league by income and the sports league with the most valuable groups.
Green Bay Packers hold the most combined NFL champions with thirteen, winning nine titles before the Super Bowl period and 4 Super Bowls afterwards. Considering that the creation of the Super Bowl, the Pittsburgh Steelers New England Patriots both have one of the most champion titles at 6.
Founding and history
On August 20, 1920, a meeting 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 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 4 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 Expert Football Association (APFA).
The league elected Jim Thorpe as its first president, and included fourteen teams (the Buffalo All-Americans Chicago Tigers Columbus Panhandles Detroit Declares joined the league throughout the year). The Massillon Tigers Massillon, Ohio was also at the September 17 meeting, but did not field a team in 1920. Only 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 teams played schedules that included non-league challengers, the APFA awarded the Akron Pros the champion by virtue of their The first occasion occurred on September 26, 1920 when the Rock Island Independents beat 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 resulted in 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 first in the league standings.
At the time, teams were ranked on a single table and the group with the greatest gaining percentage (not including ties, which were not counted towards the standings) at the end of the season was stated the champion; the only tiebreaker was that in the event of a tie if two groups played two times in a season, the outcome of the 2nd video game identified the title (the source of the 1921 debate). This method had actually been used because the league's development in 1920, but no circumstance had actually been encountered where 2 teams were tied for first. The league quickly figured out that a championship game between Chicago and Portsmouth was required to choose the league's champ. The teams were initially arranged to play the championship game, officially a regular-season game that would count towards the regular season standings, at Wrigley Field in Chicago, however a combination of heavy snow and severe cold forced the video game to be moved indoors to Chicago Stadium, which did not have a regulation-size football field. Having fun with modified rules to accommodate the smaller sized playing field, the Bears won the game 9–-- 0 and thus won the championship. Fan interest in the de facto championship game led the NFL, beginning in, to split into two departments with a national championship to be played in between the division champs.
1934 season likewise marked the very 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 elimination of a similar restriction Big league Baseball The NFL was always the biggest expert football league in the United States; it nonetheless dealt with many rival expert leagues through the 1930s and 1940s. Competing leagues included at least three separate American Football Leagues All-America Football Conference (AAFC), on top of different local leagues of differing quality. 3 NFL teams trace their histories to these competing leagues, consisting of the Los Angeles Rams (who came from a 1936 version of the American Football League), the Cleveland Browns San Francisco 49ers (the last 2 of which originated from the AAFC). By the 1950s, the NFL had an efficient monopoly on expert football in the United States; its only competition in The United States and Canada was the professional 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 developed a niche market in Canada and still makes it through as an independent league.
A new expert league, the fourth American Football League (AFL), started to play in 1960. The upstart AFL started to challenge the established NFL in popularity, gaining profitable television contracts and participating in a bidding war with the NFL totally free agents and draft picks. The 2 leagues revealed a merger on June 8, 1966, to take complete impact in 1970. In the meantime, the leagues would hold a typical draft and championship game. The 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 combined, it was rearranged into two conferences: the National Football Conference (NFC), consisting of the majority of the pre-merger NFL groups, and the Football Conference (AFC), including all of the AFL teams as well as three pre-merger NFL teams.
Today, the NFL is the most popular sports league in The United States and Canada; much of its development is credited to former Commissioner Pete Rozelle, who led the league from 1960 to 1989. Overall yearly presence increased from 3 million at the start of his tenure to 17 million by the end of his period, and 400 million international viewers saw 1989's Super Bowl XXIII The NFL established NFL Properties in 1963. The league's licensing wing, NFL Residence makes the league billions of dollars each year; Rozelle's tenure likewise marked the production of NFL Charities and a national collaboration with United Way Paul Tagliabue was elected as commissioner to succeed Rozelle; his seventeen-year period, which ended in 2006, was marked by big boosts in television agreements and the addition of four expansion teams, in addition to the introduction of league efforts to increase the number of minorities in league and team management roles.
The league's existing Commissioner, Roger Goodell, has actually focused on reducing the number of prohibited hits and making the sport much safer, generally through fining or suspending players who break guidelines.
These actions are among numerous 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, rather setting a minimum. The league mandated a twelve-game routine season for each team beginning in, later on shortening this to eleven games in and 10 video games in, generally due to The second world war. After the war ended, the variety of video 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 existing sixteen-game schedule in In March 2021, the NFL officially embraced a seventeen-game schedule after gaining the arrangement of the National Football League Players Association Having an odd number of video games in the schedule will offer half the teams 9 games as the house team while half the groups have just eight house games. To reduce the viewed advantage on competition of having more home video games, the extra home video game will be turned in between the two conferences each year. This is because playoff berths are assigned at the conference level, so all groups within the conference will have played the very same number of home games.
The NFL operated in a two-conference system from 1933 to, where the champs of each conference would fulfill in the NFL National Championship. If 2 teams tied for the conference lead, they would fulfill in a one-game playoff to identify the conference champion. In, the NFL broadened from fifteen groups to sixteen groups. Rather of simply evening out the conferences by including the expansion New Orleans Saints to the seven-member Western Conference, the NFL realigned the conferences and divide each into two four-team departments. The four division champions would fulfill in the NFL playoffs, a two-round playoff.
The NFL also 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 versus 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 understanding as a game for losers.
Following the addition of the former AFL teams into the NFL in, the NFL divided into two conferences with 3 departments each. The broadened league, now with twenty-six teams, would likewise feature a broadened eight-team playoff, the participants being the 3 department champs from each conference along with one 'wild card' group (the team with the very best win portion) from each conference. In 1978, the league included a 2nd wild card team from each conference, bringing the overall variety of playoff groups to 10, and a further two wild card groups were included to bring the overall to twelve. When the NFL expanded to 32 teams in, the league straightened, altering the division structure from 3 departments in each conference to 4 divisions in each conference. As each division champ gets a playoff quote, the variety of wild card groups from each conference dropped from three to 2.
The playoffs expanded again in 2020, adding two more wild card groups to bring the total to fourteen playoff teams.
Roger Goodell At the business level, the National Football League considers itself a trade association made up of and funded by its 32 member groups.
Up up until 2015, the league was an unincorporated not-for-profit 501(c)( 6) Area 501(c)( 6) of the Internal Profits Code provides an exemption from federal earnings taxation 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 arranged for earnings and no part of the net incomes of which inures to the advantage of any private shareholder or person..
In contrast, each private team (except the non-profit Green Bay Packers) undergoes tax because they earn 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 identified it a distraction, saying the impacts of the tax-exempt status of the league workplace have been mischaracterized consistently in the last few years ... Every dollar of income produced through tv rights costs, licensing contracts, sponsorships, ticket sales, and other means 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 distinction to our organization. As an outcome, the league office may owe around US$ 10 million in income taxes, however it is no longer required to disclose the wages of its executive officers.
The league has 3 specified officers: the commissioner, secretary, and treasurer. Each conference has actually one defined officer, the president, which is essentially an honorary position with few powers and mostly ceremonial tasks, consisting of awarding the conference championship trophy.
The commissioner is chosen by the affirmative vote of two-thirds or eighteen (whichever is greater) 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 disagreements between clubs, players, coaches, and staff members. He is the primary executive officer of the NFL and also has authority in employing league workers, negotiating television agreements, disciplining individuals that own part or all of an NFL team, clubs, or employed individuals of an NFL club if they have broken league laws or devoted conduct damaging to the welfare of the League or professional football.
The commissioner can, in case of misconduct by a party related to the league, suspend people, by far a fine of approximately US$ 500,000, cancel contracts with the league, and award or strip teams of draft picks.
In extreme cases, the commissioner can offer recommendations to the NFL's Executive Committee as much as and including the cancellation or forfeiture of a club's franchise or any other action, he considers required. The commissioner can also issue sanctions as much as and consisting of a lifetime ban from the league if an individual connected to the NFL has bet on games or failed to alert the league of conspiracies or strategies to bank on or fix video 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 three main sources: NFL Ventures (merchandising), NFL Enterprises (NFL Network NFL Sunday Ticket, which the league controls), and the television contract. The league distributes such earnings equally amongst teams, no matter efficiency. Since February 2019 [update], each team receives $255 million annually from the league's tv agreement, up 150% from $99.9 million in 2010.
Many NFL teams' monetary declarations are secret.
The Kansas City Star obtained the Kansas City Chiefs' income tax return for 2008–-- 2010. According to the Star, the team's income increased from $231 million in 2008 to $302 million in 2010. In 2010, 2 thirds of earnings 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 tv 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 miscellaneous sources.
The largest Chiefs expense in 2010 was $148 million for gamers, coaches, and other workers. Of the $38 million in running income, Clark Lamar Jr.
, two other kids, and widow of previous team owner Lamar Hunt divided $17.6 million, and reinvested the staying $20 million into the team.
According to financial expert Richard D. Wolff, the NFL's profits model remains in breach of the common corporate structure. By rearranging revenues to all teams the NFL is ensuring that one group will not dominate the league through extreme earnings.
Roger Noll described the profits sharing as the league's essential structural weak point, however, as there is no disincentive versus a group playing badly and the largest expense item, gamer incomes, is capped.
AFC East AFC North AFC South AFC West Costs 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) ended up in second location in the NFC South in 2021, the Buccaneers will play 2 video games against each of its department competitors (highlighted in light blue), one video game versus 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 video game versus the group who completed second in the AFC South (highlighted in pink).
Presently, the 14 opponents each group faces over the 17-game routine 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 begun the week after Labor Day (the very first Monday in September) and concluded the week after New Year.
The opening game of the season is normally a home game on a Thursday for the league's protecting champ.
Most NFL games are played on Sundays, with a Monday night video game normally held at least when a week and Thursday night games taking place on most weeks too.
NFL video games are not generally played on Fridays or Saturdays until late in the routine season, as federal law forbids professional football leagues from taking on college or high school football. Because high school and college groups typically play games on Friday and Saturday, respectively, the NFL can not hold video games on those days up until the Friday prior to the third Saturday in December. While Saturday games late in the season are common, the league seldom holds Friday video games, the most current one being on Christmas Day in 2020.
NFL video games are seldom arranged for Tuesday or Wednesday, and those days have actually only been used three 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 avoid conflict with the Democratic National Convention and in 2020, when a video game was postponed from Sunday to Tuesday due to players testing favorable for COVID-19 NFL regular season matchups are determined according to a scheduling formula. Within a department, all four groups play 14 out of their 17 games versus common challengers or each other–-- two games (house and away) are played against the other three groups in the division, while one game is held versus 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 group is in, and four years in the conference they are not in). 2 of the other games are intraconference games, determined by the standings of the previous year –-- for example, if a group finishes initially in its division, it will play 2 other first-place teams in its conference, while a group that ends up last would play two other last-place teams in the conference. The last video game is an inter-conference based on a turning cycle and determined by previous season's standings.
In overall, each group plays 17 video games and has one bye week, where it does not play a video game.
Although a group's house and away challengers are understood by the end of the previous year's regular season, the specific dates and times for NFL video games are not identified up until much later due to the fact that the league needs to represent, among other things, the Major League Baseball postseason and local events that might position a scheduling conflict with NFL video games. During the 2010 season, over 500,000 possible schedules were developed by computers, 5,000 of which were considered playable schedules and were reviewed by the NFL's scheduling team. After reaching what they felt was the best schedule out of the group, nearly 50 more possible schedules were established to attempt to make sure that the chosen schedule would be the best possible one.