National Football League
Expert American football league National Football League Current season, competition or edition:
No. of groups 32
Country United States [A] Park Avenue New York City NY Tampa Bay Buccaneers Green Bay Packers [B] TELEVISION partner(s) United States:
Fox NBC ESPN NFL Network Telemundo Deportes Broadcasters Official site
consisting of 32 teams, divided similarly in between the National Football Conference (NFC) and the Football Conference (AFC). The NFL is among the four major North American professional sports leagues, the highest professional level of Football worldwide.
eighteen-week routine season ranges from early September to early January, with each group playing seventeen video games and having one bye week. Following the conclusion of the regular season, 7 teams from each conference (four department winners and three wild card groups) advance to the playoffs single-elimination tournament culminating in the Super Bowl, which is generally 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 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 initially identifying champions through end-of-season standings, a playoff system was implemented in 1933 that culminated with the NFL Championship Game up until 1966. Following a contract to merge the NFL with the competing Football League (AFL), the Super Bowl was first held in 1967 to determine a champ in between the very best teams from the two leagues and has remained as the last video game of each NFL season given that the merger was completed in 1970.
Today, the NFL has the greatest average participation (67,591) of any professional sports league worldwide and is the most popular sports league in the United States.
The Super Bowl is likewise among the biggest club sporting occasions on the planet, with the specific video games accounting for many of the most watched television 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 earnings and the sports league with the most valuable groups.
Green Bay Packers hold the most combined NFL championships with thirteen, winning nine titles prior to the Super Bowl era and 4 Super Bowls later on. Given that the development of the Super Bowl, the Pittsburgh Steelers New England Patriots both have one of the most champion titles at six.
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 automobile display room in Canton, Ohio This conference led to the development of the American Expert Football Conference (APFC), a group who, according to the Canton Evening Repository, planned to raise the standard of expert football in every method possible, to eliminate bidding for players between competing clubs and to protect cooperation in the development of schedules.
Another meeting was held on September 17, 1920 with representatives 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 relabelled to the American Specialist Football Association (APFA).
The league chosen Jim Thorpe as its first president, and included fourteen groups (the Buffalo All-Americans Chicago Tigers Columbus Panhandles Detroit Declares signed up with the league during the year). The Massillon Tigers Massillon, Ohio was likewise at the September 17 conference, but did not field a team in 1920. Only 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 first APFA (NFL) Champion in 1920.
Although the league did not preserve main standings for its 1920 inaugural season and teams played schedules that consisted of non-league opponents, the APFA awarded the Akron Pros the championship by virtue of their The first event 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 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 highest winning 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 2 groups played twice in a season, the outcome of the 2nd game identified the title (the source of the 1921 controversy). This approach had actually been utilized since the league's development in 1920, however no situation had actually been experienced where two groups were connected for initially. The league quickly identified that a championship game in between Chicago and Portsmouth was needed to decide the league's champ. The groups were initially arranged 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 mix of heavy snow and severe cold forced the game to be moved indoors to Chicago Arena, which did not have a regulation-size football field. Having fun with altered rules to accommodate the smaller playing field, the Bears won the video game 9–-- 0 and thus won the championship. Fan interest in the de facto championship game led the NFL, starting in, to split into 2 departments with a championship game to be played 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 restriction was rescinded in, following public pressure and coinciding with the removal of a comparable ban Major League Baseball The NFL was always the largest professional football league in the United States; it nonetheless faced numerous rival expert leagues through the 1930s and 1940s. Rival leagues consisted of at least 3 different American Football Leagues All-America Football Conference (AAFC), on top of numerous regional leagues of varying quality. Three NFL teams trace their histories to these competing leagues, including the Los Angeles Rams (who came from a 1936 iteration of the Football League), the Cleveland Browns San Francisco 49ers (the last two of which originated 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 officially became the Canadian Football League (CFL) in 1958. With Canadian football being a different football code than the American game, the CFL established a niche market in Canada and still survives as an independent league.
A brand-new professional league, the fourth American Football League (AFL), started to play in 1960. The upstart AFL started to challenge the established NFL in appeal, acquiring profitable tv contracts and engaging in a bidding war with the NFL free of charge representatives and draft picks. The 2 leagues revealed a merger on June 8, 1966, to take complete result in 1970. In the meantime, the leagues would hold a common draft and national championship. The video 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 two conferences: the National Football Conference (NFC), consisting of the majority of the pre-merger NFL teams, and the American Football Conference (AFC), including all of the AFL teams along with three pre-merger NFL teams.
Today, the NFL is the most popular sports league in The United States and Canada; much of its growth is credited to former Commissioner Pete Rozelle, who led the league from 1960 to 1989. Overall annual presence increased from 3 million at the beginning of his tenure to 17 million by the end of his tenure, and 400 million worldwide viewers enjoyed 1989's Super Bowl XXIII The NFL established NFL Characteristics in 1963. The league's licensing wing, NFL Characteristic earns the league billions of dollars yearly; Rozelle's tenure likewise marked the production of NFL Charities and a national partnership with United Way Paul Tagliabue was elected as commissioner to succeed Rozelle; his seventeen-year period, which ended in 2006, was marked by large boosts in tv agreements and the addition of four growth teams, in addition to the introduction of league efforts to increase the variety of minorities in league and group management roles.
The league's present Commissioner, Roger Goodell, has concentrated on minimizing the number of illegal hits and making the sport much safer, primarily through fining or suspending gamers who break rules.
These actions are amongst lots of the NFL is taking to reduce concussions and improve gamer safety.
Season and playoff development
From 1920 to 1934, the NFL did not have a set number of video games for teams to play, instead setting a minimum. The league mandated a twelve-game routine season for each team start in, later on shortening this to eleven games in and 10 games in, primarily due to World War II. After the war ended, the variety of games gone back to eleven video games in, and later on back to twelve in 1947. The NFL went to a fourteen-game schedule in, which it maintained until changing to the current sixteen-game schedule in In March 2021, the NFL officially embraced a seventeen-game schedule after gaining the agreement of the National Football League Players Association Having an odd number of video games in the schedule will provide half the groups nine video games as the house team while half the groups have just eight home video games. To minimize the perceived benefit on competition of having more house games, the additional house game will be rotated between the two conferences each year. This is since playoff berths are designated 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 National Championship. If two groups connected for the conference lead, they would fulfill in a one-game playoff to determine the conference champion. In, the NFL broadened 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 realigned the conferences and split each into 2 four-team divisions. The 4 division champs would meet in the NFL playoffs, a two-round playoff.
The NFL also operated the Playoff Bowl (officially the Bert Bell Benefit Bowl) from 1960 to 1969. Effectively 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 understanding as a game for losers.
Following the addition of the former AFL groups into the NFL in, the NFL divided into two conferences with 3 divisions each. The broadened league, now with twenty-six teams, would likewise include an expanded eight-team playoff, the participants being the 3 division champs from each conference as well as one 'wild card' group (the group with the best win portion) from each conference. In 1978, the league added a 2nd wild card group from each conference, bringing the total variety of playoff groups to 10, and a more 2 wild card groups were included to bring the overall to twelve. When the NFL expanded to 32 groups in, the league realigned, changing the division structure from three departments in each conference to 4 divisions in each conference. As each division champ gets a playoff quote, the variety of wild card teams from each conference dropped from three to two.
The playoffs broadened again in 2020, adding 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 made up of and funded 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 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 players), not organized for profit and no part of the net profits of which inures to the advantage of any personal investor or person..
In contrast, each specific team (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, stating the results of the tax-exempt status of the league office have actually been mischaracterized repeatedly recently ... Every dollar of income created through tv rights fees, licensing contracts, sponsorships, ticket sales, and other ways 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 distinction to our organization. As an outcome, the league workplace might owe around US$ 10 million in income taxes, however it is no longer needed to disclose the wages of its executive officers.
The league has actually 3 defined officers: the commissioner, secretary, and treasurer. Each conference has actually one specified officer, the president, which is essentially an honorary position with couple of powers and mostly ritualistic duties, consisting of awarding the conference championship prize.
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 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 between clubs, gamers, coaches, and staff members. He is the primary executive officer of the NFL and also has authority in hiring league employees, working out tv contracts, disciplining individuals that own part or all of an NFL group, clubs, or employed people of an NFL club if they have actually violated league bylaws or devoted conduct destructive to the well-being of the League or professional football.
The commissioner can, in the event of misbehavior by a celebration related to 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 picks.
In extreme cases, the commissioner can provide recommendations to the NFL's Executive Committee up to and consisting of the cancellation or forfeiture of a club's franchise or any other action, he considers needed. The commissioner can also provide sanctions up to and including a life time ban from the league if an individual linked to the NFL has actually bet on video games or failed to inform the league of conspiracies or strategies to bet on or repair games.
The current Commissioner of the National Football League is Roger Goodell, who was elected in 2006 after Paul Tagliabue, the previous commissioner, retired.
NFL income is from 3 main sources: NFL Ventures (merchandising), NFL Enterprises (NFL Network NFL Sunday Ticket, which the league controls), and the tv contract. The league disperses such income similarly amongst groups, no matter performance. Since February 2019 [upgrade], each team gets $255 million every year from the league's tv contract, up 150% from $99.9 million in 2010.
The majority of NFL groups' financial statements are secret.
The Kansas City Star obtained 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, 2 thirds of income 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 tv contract. The staying 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 agreement ($2.7 million), and various sources.
The largest Chiefs expense in 2010 was $148 million for players, coaches, and other employees. Of the $38 million in running earnings, Clark Lamar Jr.
, two other children, and widow of previous group 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 profits design remains in breach of the normal corporate structure. By redistributing earnings to all groups the NFL is ensuring that a person team will not dominate the league through excessive revenues.
Roger Noll described the income sharing as the league's most important structural weakness, however, as there is no disincentive versus a group playing severely and the largest cost item, player salaries, is topped.
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) ended up in second place in the NFC South in 2021, the Buccaneers will play 2 games versus each of its department rivals (highlighted in light blue), one video game versus 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 game versus the group who finished second in the AFC South (highlighted in pink).
Presently, the 14 challengers each group deals with over the 17-game routine season schedule are set utilizing a pre-determined formula:
The league runs an 18-week, 272-game routine season. Considering that 2021, the season has begun the week after Labor Day (the first Monday in September) and concluded the week after New Year.
The opening video game of the season is normally a home game on a Thursday for the league's protecting champion.
The majority of NFL games are used Sundays, with a Monday night video game normally held at least when a week and Thursday night video games taking place on many weeks also.
NFL video games are not usually used Fridays or Saturdays till late in the routine season, as federal law prohibits professional football leagues from taking on college or high school football. Because high school and college teams 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 video games late in the season prevail, the league seldom holds Friday games, the most recent one being on Christmas Day in 2020.
NFL games are seldom arranged for Tuesday or Wednesday, and those days have actually only been utilized 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 game was moved from Thursday to Wednesday to avoid dispute with the Democratic National Convention and in 2020, when a game was postponed from Sunday to Tuesday due to gamers checking positive for COVID-19 NFL routine season matches are determined according to a scheduling formula. Within a department, all four teams play 14 out of their 17 video games versus typical opponents or each other–-- two games (house and away) are bet the other 3 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 figured out by a rotating cycle (three years for the conference the team remains in, and 4 years in the conference they are not in). Two of the other video games are intraconference games, determined by the standings of the previous year –-- for example, if a group completes first in its department, it will play two other first-place teams in its conference, while a team that completes last would play 2 other last-place groups in the conference. The final game is an inter-conference based on a turning 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 group's home and away challengers are understood by the end of the previous year's regular season, the precise dates and times for NFL games are not determined until much later on because the league has to account for, among other things, the Major League Baseball postseason and regional events that might present a scheduling conflict with NFL games. Throughout the 2010 season, over 500,000 potential schedules were created by computer systems, 5,000 of which were considered playable schedules and were evaluated by the NFL's scheduling team. After reaching what they felt was the best schedule out of the group, nearly 50 more potential schedules were established to try to ensure that the selected schedule would be the best possible one.