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 Official website
including 32 groups, 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 expert level of American football on the planet.
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, seven groups from each conference (4 department winners and three wild card groups) advance to the playoffs single-elimination tournament culminating in the Super Bowl, which is typically held on the 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 relabeling itself the National Football League for the 1922 season. After at first identifying champs through end-of-season standings, a playoff system was implemented in 1933 that culminated with the NFL National Championship up until 1966. Following an arrangement to combine the NFL with the competing Football League (AFL), the Super Bowl was first held in 1967 to figure out a champ between the best groups from the two leagues and has actually remained as the final video game of each NFL season given that the merger was completed in 1970.
Today, the NFL has the greatest average attendance (67,591) of any professional sports league on the planet and is the most popular sports league in the United States.
The Super Bowl is likewise among the greatest club sporting occasions worldwide, with the individual video games accounting for a lot of the most watched television programs in American history and all occupying the Nielsen's Top 5 tally of the all-time most enjoyed U.S. television broadcasts by 2015.
The NFL is the most affluent professional sports league by income and the sports league with the most important teams.
Green Bay Packers hold the most combined NFL champions with thirteen, winning 9 titles before the Super Bowl age and four Super Bowls later on. Since the creation of the Super Bowl, the Pittsburgh Steelers New England Patriots both have one of the most championship titles at 6.
Establishing and history
On August 20, 1920, a meeting was held by representatives of the Akron Pros Canton Bulldogs Cleveland Indians Dayton Triangles Jordan Hupmobile vehicle display room in Canton, Ohio This conference resulted in the formation of the American Professional Football Conference (APFC), a group who, according to the Canton Night Repository, meant to raise the requirement of professional football in every way possible, to remove bidding for gamers in between rival clubs and to protect cooperation in the development of schedules.
Another conference was held on September 17, 1920 with agents 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 relabelled 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 Heralds signed up with the league throughout the year). The Massillon Tigers Massillon, Ohio was likewise at the September 17 conference, but did not field a group 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 keep main standings for its 1920 inaugural season and groups played schedules that included non-league opponents, the APFA granted the Akron Pros the champion by virtue of their The very first occasion occurred 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 altered its name to the National Football League (NFL).
, the season ended with the Chicago Bears () and the Portsmouth Spartans) tied for very first in the league standings.
At the time, groups were ranked on a single table and the team with the greatest winning portion (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 two times in a season, the outcome of the 2nd video game determined the title (the source of the 1921 debate). This technique had actually been utilized because the league's development in 1920, however no scenario had actually been encountered where two groups were connected for first. The league rapidly identified that a championship game between Chicago and Portsmouth was required to choose the league's champ. The teams were originally arranged to play the championship 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 your home to Chicago Arena, which did not have a regulation-size football field. Playing with transformed 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, beginning in, to split into two divisions with a national championship to be played between the division champions.
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 coinciding with the elimination of a similar restriction Big league Baseball The NFL was constantly the largest expert football league in the United States; it however faced many competing expert leagues through the 1930s and 1940s. Rival leagues included at least three separate Football Leagues All-America Football Conference (AAFC), on top of various local leagues of varying quality. 3 NFL teams trace their histories to these rival leagues, consisting of the Los Angeles Rams (who originated from a 1936 iteration of the American Football League), the Cleveland Browns San Francisco 49ers (the last two 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 various football code than the American video game, the CFL established a specific 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 established NFL in popularity, getting rewarding television agreements and engaging in a bidding war with the NFL for free agents and draft choices. The two leagues announced a merger on June 8, 1966, to take complete result in 1970. In the meantime, the leagues would hold a typical draft and national championship. 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 merged, it was restructured into two conferences: the National Football Conference (NFC), including most of the pre-merger NFL teams, and the American Football Conference (AFC), consisting of all of the AFL groups 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 growth is attributed to previous Commissioner Pete Rozelle, who led the league from 1960 to 1989. General annual participation increased from 3 million at the beginning of his tenure to 17 million by the end of his period, and 400 million international viewers enjoyed 1989's Super Bowl XXIII The NFL developed NFL Residences in 1963. The league's licensing wing, NFL Characteristic earns the league billions of dollars each year; Rozelle's tenure also marked the production of NFL Charities and a national collaboration with United Method Paul Tagliabue was elected as commissioner to prosper Rozelle; his seventeen-year tenure, which ended in 2006, was marked by big increases in tv agreements and the addition of 4 growth groups, in addition to the intro of league efforts to increase the variety of minorities in league and team management functions.
The league's current Commissioner, Roger Goodell, has actually focused on lowering the number of prohibited hits and making the sport more secure, generally through fining or suspending players who break guidelines.
These actions are among lots of the NFL is taking to reduce concussions and enhance player security.
Season and playoff development
From 1920 to 1934, the NFL did not have a set variety of games for groups to play, instead setting a minimum. The league mandated a twelve-game routine season for each group beginning in, later reducing this to eleven video games in and 10 video games in, mainly due to World War II. After the war ended, the number of video games gone back to eleven games in, and later back to twelve in 1947. The NFL went to a fourteen-game schedule in, which it maintained until switching to the current sixteen-game schedule in In March 2021, the NFL formally embraced a seventeen-game schedule after gaining the contract of the National Football League Players Association Having an odd variety of games in the schedule will give half the groups 9 games as the house group while half the teams have only 8 house video games. To reduce the viewed benefit on competition of having more house video games, the additional house video game will be turned in between the 2 conferences each year. This is due to the fact that playoff berths are assigned at the conference level, so all teams within the conference will have played the same number of house 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 2 teams connected for the conference lead, they would meet in a one-game playoff to determine the conference champion. In, the NFL broadened from fifteen groups to sixteen groups. Instead of just evening out the conferences by adding the growth New Orleans Saints to the seven-member Western Conference, the NFL straightened the conferences and divide each into two four-team departments. The 4 department champs would fulfill in the NFL playoffs, a two-round playoff.
The NFL also ran the Playoff Bowl (officially the Bert Bell Benefit Bowl) from 1960 to 1969. Successfully a third-place video game, pitting the two conference runners-up against each other, the league thinks about Playoff Bowls to have actually been exhibits instead of playoff games. The league terminated the Playoff Bowl in 1970 due to its perception as a game for losers.
Following the addition of the previous AFL teams into the NFL in, the NFL split into two conferences with 3 departments each. The broadened league, now with twenty-six teams, would also feature an expanded eight-team playoff, the individuals being the 3 department champions from each conference in addition to one 'wild card' team (the team with the best win portion) from each conference. In 1978, the league included a 2nd wild card group from each conference, bringing the overall number of playoff teams to ten, and an additional two wild card groups were included to bring the overall to twelve. When the NFL expanded to 32 groups in, the league realigned, altering the division structure from 3 divisions in each conference to 4 departments in each conference. As each division champ gets a playoff quote, the variety of wild card teams from each conference dropped from 3 to 2.
The playoffs broadened once again in 2020, adding two more wild card teams to bring the overall 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 till 2015, the league was an unincorporated not-for-profit 501(c)( 6) Area 501(c)( 6) of the Internal Revenue Code supplies an exemption from federal earnings taxation 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 arranged for revenue and no part of the net profits of which inures to the advantage of any private investor or individual..
In contrast, each specific group (except the non-profit Green Bay Packers) undergoes 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 effects of the tax-exempt status of the league workplace have been mischaracterized consistently recently ... Every dollar of income generated through tv rights fees, licensing contracts, sponsorships, ticket sales, and other means 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 business. As a result, the league workplace may owe around US$ 10 million in earnings taxes, however it is no longer required to disclose the salaries of its executive officers.
The league has 3 defined officers: the commissioner, secretary, and treasurer. Each conference has one specified officer, the president, which is basically an honorary position with couple of powers and primarily ritualistic duties, consisting of granting the conference championship trophy.
The commissioner is elected 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 conflicts in between clubs, gamers, coaches, and workers. He is the principal executive officer of the NFL and also has authority in employing league staff members, working out television contracts, disciplining individuals that own part or all of an NFL group, clubs, or utilized people of an NFL club if they have actually breached league laws or dedicated conduct detrimental to the well-being of the League or professional football.
The commissioner can, in case of misbehavior by a party related to the league, suspend individuals, hand down a fine of as much as US$ 500,000, cancel agreements with the league, and award or strip teams of draft picks.
In severe cases, the commissioner can provide recommendations 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 needed. The commissioner can also issue sanctions approximately and consisting of a life time restriction from the league if an individual connected to the NFL has bet on games or stopped working to alert the league of conspiracies or strategies to bank on or fix video 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 profits is from 3 primary sources: NFL Ventures (retailing), NFL Enterprises (NFL Network NFL Sunday Ticket, which the league controls), and the tv contract. The league distributes such earnings similarly amongst groups, no matter performance. As of February 2019 [update], each team gets $255 million each year from the league's television agreement, up 150% from $99.9 million in 2010.
Many NFL groups' monetary statements are secret.
The Kansas City Star got 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 tv agreement. The staying one 3rd was from tickets ($42.4 million), business 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 players, coaches, and other staff members. Of the $38 million in operating 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 group.
According to financial expert Richard D. Wolff, the NFL's income design remains in contravention of the normal business structure. By rearranging revenues to all groups the NFL is making sure that a person group will not dominate the league through extreme revenues.
Roger Noll explained the revenue sharing as the league's most important structural weak point, nevertheless, as there is no disincentive against a group playing terribly and the biggest cost product, player wages, is capped.
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 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 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 game each versus the second-place finishers in the NFC North NFC West (highlighted in orange) and one video game versus the group who finished second in the AFC South (highlighted in pink).
Currently, the 14 challengers each group faces over the 17-game routine season schedule are set using a pre-determined formula:
The league runs an 18-week, 272-game regular season. Given that 2021, the season has actually started 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 video game on a Thursday for the league's protecting champ.
The majority of NFL games are played on Sundays, with a Monday night video game usually held at least when a week and Thursday night video games happening on most weeks too.
NFL games are not generally played on Fridays or Saturdays until late in the regular season, as federal law restricts expert football leagues from taking on college or high school football. Due to the fact that high school and college groups typically play video games on Friday and Saturday, respectively, the NFL can not hold video games on those days up until the Friday before the 3rd Saturday in December. While Saturday games late in the season prevail, the league seldom holds Friday video games, the most recent 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 given 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 dispute with the Democratic National Convention and in 2020, when a game was held off from Sunday to Tuesday due to players evaluating favorable for COVID-19 NFL regular season matchups are identified according to a scheduling formula. Within a division, all four teams play 14 out of their 17 video games against common challengers or each other–-- 2 video games (home and away) are played against the other three groups in the division, while one game is held versus all the members of a department from the NFC and a division from the AFC as determined by a turning cycle (3 years for the conference the group is in, and 4 years in the conference they are not in). Two of the other video games are intraconference video games, determined by the standings of the previous year –-- for instance, if a group ends up first in its division, it will play two other first-place teams in its conference, while a team that ends up 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 figured out by previous season's standings.
In total, each group plays 17 video games and has one bye week, where it does not play a video game.
Although a group's home and away opponents are understood by the end of the previous year's routine season, the exact dates and times for NFL games are not identified till much later since the league needs to account for, among other things, the Big league Baseball postseason and local events that could posture a scheduling conflict with NFL video games. Throughout the 2010 season, over 500,000 possible schedules were created by computers, 5,000 of which were thought about playable schedules and were evaluated by the NFL's scheduling group. After reaching what they felt was the best schedule out of the group, almost 50 more possible schedules were established to attempt to make sure that the selected schedule would be the best possible one.