National Football League
Professional American football league National Football League Current season, competitors or edition:
No. of groups 32
Nation United States [A] Park Opportunity 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
including 32 groups, divided equally between the National Football Conference (NFC) and the Football Conference (AFC). The NFL is one of the 4 significant North American professional sports leagues, the greatest professional level of American football on the planet.
eighteen-week routine season ranges from early September to early January, with each group playing seventeen games and having one bye week. Following the conclusion of the routine season, 7 groups from each conference (four department winners and 3 wild card groups) advance to the playoffs single-elimination competition culminating in the Super Bowl, which is typically hung 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 initially figuring out champions through end-of-season standings, a playoff system was carried out in 1933 that culminated with the NFL National Championship up until 1966. Following an arrangement to merge the NFL with the competing Football League (AFL), the Super Bowl was first held in 1967 to figure out a champion in between the very best groups from the two leagues and has actually remained as the last game of each NFL season considering that the merger was finished in 1970.
Today, the NFL has the greatest average presence (67,591) of any expert sports league worldwide and is the most popular sports league in the United States.
The Super Bowl is also among the biggest club sporting occasions in the world, with the individual video games representing many of the most watched television programs in American history and all inhabiting the Nielsen's Top 5 tally of the all-time most viewed U.S. television broadcasts by 2015.
The NFL is the most affluent expert sports league by earnings and the sports league with the most valuable teams.
Green Bay Packers hold the most combined NFL champions with thirteen, winning 9 titles prior to the Super Bowl era and four Super Bowls afterwards. Because the development 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 agents of the Akron Pros Canton Bulldogs Cleveland Indians Dayton Triangles Jordan Hupmobile auto 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 standard of professional football in every way possible, to remove bidding for gamers between competing clubs and to secure cooperation in the development of schedules.
Another meeting was hung 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 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 Declares joined the league throughout the year). The Massillon Tigers Massillon, Ohio was also at the September 17 conference, however 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 very first APFA (NFL) Champion in 1920.
Although the league did not preserve official standings for its 1920 inaugural season and groups played schedules that included non-league opponents, the APFA awarded the Akron Pros the championship by virtue of their The very first event 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 first complete 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 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 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 the event of a tie if two teams played twice in a season, the outcome of the 2nd game figured out the title (the source of the 1921 controversy). This technique had actually been used since the league's creation in 1920, however no scenario had actually been encountered where 2 teams were tied for initially. The league quickly figured out that a championship game in between Chicago and Portsmouth was needed to decide the league's champ. The groups were initially set up to play the playoff game, formally a regular-season game that would count towards the regular season standings, at Wrigley Field in Chicago, but a mix of heavy snow and severe cold forced the video game to be moved indoors to Chicago Arena, 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 hence won the champion. Fan interest in the de facto national championship led the NFL, beginning in, to split into two departments with a championship game to be played in between the division champions.
1934 season also marked the first of twelve seasons in which African Americans were absent from the league. The de facto ban was rescinded in, following public pressure and coinciding with the removal of a comparable restriction Major League Baseball The NFL was always the largest expert football league in the United States; it however faced numerous rival professional 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 various regional leagues of differing quality. Three NFL groups trace their histories to these rival leagues, including the Los Angeles Rams (who came from a 1936 model 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 effective monopoly on expert football in the United States; its only competition in North America was the professional Canadian football circuit, which officially became the Canadian Football League (CFL) in 1958. With Canadian football being a various football code than the American game, the CFL established a niche market in Canada and still makes it through as an independent league.
A brand-new professional league, the fourth Football League (AFL), began to play in 1960. The upstart AFL began to challenge the established NFL in popularity, gaining rewarding television contracts and taking part in a bidding war with the NFL for free representatives and draft picks. The 2 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 four times prior to 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 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 growth is attributed to previous Commissioner Pete Rozelle, who led the league from 1960 to 1989. Total yearly participation increased from 3 million at the beginning of his tenure to 17 million by the end of his tenure, and 400 million international viewers saw 1989's Super Bowl XXIII The NFL developed NFL Residences in 1963. The league's licensing wing, NFL Residence makes the league billions of dollars annually; Rozelle's tenure also marked the creation of NFL Charities and a nationwide partnership with United Way Paul Tagliabue was chosen as commissioner to prosper Rozelle; his seventeen-year period, which ended in 2006, was marked by large boosts in tv contracts and the addition of 4 expansion groups, 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 actually concentrated on minimizing the variety of illegal hits and making the sport more secure, primarily through fining or suspending gamers who break guidelines.
These actions are amongst numerous the NFL is taking to reduce concussions and enhance player safety.
Season and playoff development
From 1920 to 1934, the NFL did not have a set variety of video games for groups to play, rather setting a minimum. The league mandated a twelve-game routine season for each group beginning in, later shortening this to eleven games in and 10 games in, generally due to The second world war. After the war ended, the variety of games returned 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 up until switching to the present sixteen-game schedule in In March 2021, the NFL officially adopted a seventeen-game schedule after getting the arrangement of the National Football League Players Association Having an odd variety of games in the schedule will provide half the teams nine games as the home team while half the teams have just 8 home games. To minimize the viewed advantage on competition of having more house video games, the additional home game will be rotated between the two conferences each year. This is because playoff berths are allocated 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 champs of each conference would satisfy in the NFL Championship Game. If two groups tied 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. Instead of simply evening out the conferences by adding the growth New Orleans Saints to the seven-member Western Conference, the NFL realigned the conferences and divide each into 2 four-team divisions. The four department 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. Efficiently a third-place video game, pitting the 2 conference runners-up against each other, the league thinks about Playoff Bowls to have been exhibitions rather than championship game. The league stopped the Playoff Bowl in 1970 due to its understanding as a video game for losers.
Following the addition of the former AFL groups into the NFL in, the NFL split into 2 conferences with three divisions each. The broadened league, now with twenty-six groups, would likewise feature a broadened eight-team playoff, the participants being the 3 department champs from each conference along with one 'wild card' team (the team with the best win portion) from each conference. In 1978, the league included a second wild card team from each conference, bringing the overall number of playoff teams to 10, and a more two wild card groups were included to bring the total 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 departments in each conference. As each division champ gets a playoff bid, the number of wild card groups from each conference dropped from 3 to two.
The playoffs expanded once again in 2020, adding 2 more wild card groups to bring the total to fourteen playoff groups.
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 nonprofit 501(c)( 6) Area 501(c)( 6) of the Internal Revenue Code supplies an exemption from federal income taxation for Business leagues, chambers of commerce, real-estate boards, boards of trade, or expert football leagues (whether or not administering a pension fund for football gamers), not arranged for profit and no part of the net incomes of which inures to the benefit of any private investor or person..
On the other hand, each specific team (except the non-profit Green Bay Packers) goes through tax due to the fact that 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 distraction, saying the effects of the tax-exempt status of the league office have actually been mischaracterized consistently in recent years ... Every dollar of earnings produced through tv rights costs, licensing contracts, sponsorships, ticket sales, and other means is earned by the 32 clubs and is taxable there. This will stay the case even when the league office and Management Council file returns as taxable entities and the modification in filing status will make no material distinction to our company. As a result, the league office may owe around US$ 10 million in income taxes, but it is no longer required to disclose the incomes of its executive officers.
The league has 3 defined officers: the commissioner, secretary, and treasurer. Each conference has actually one defined officer, the president, which is basically an honorary position with few powers and primarily ritualistic duties, including granting the championship game trophy.
The commissioner is elected 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 between clubs, gamers, coaches, and staff members. He is the principal executive officer of the NFL and likewise has authority in employing league workers, working out television contracts, disciplining individuals that own part or all of an NFL team, clubs, or employed people of an NFL club if they have breached league bylaws or dedicated conduct damaging to the well-being of the League or professional football.
The commissioner can, in case of misconduct by a party related to the league, suspend individuals, hand down a fine of approximately US$ 500,000, cancel agreements with the league, and award or strip groups of draft picks.
In extreme cases, the commissioner can offer suggestions to the NFL's Executive Committee approximately and including the cancellation or loss of a club's franchise or any other action, he considers required. The commissioner can likewise release sanctions approximately and including a life time ban from the league if a specific linked to the NFL has actually banked on video games or failed to notify the league of conspiracies or plans 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 television agreement. The league disperses such profits equally amongst groups, regardless of performance. As of February 2019 [upgrade], each team receives $255 million annually from the league's television contract, up 150% from $99.9 million in 2010.
Most NFL teams' monetary statements are secret.
The Kansas City Star acquired the Kansas City Chiefs' income tax return for 2008–-- 2010. According to the Star, the team's revenue rose from $231 million in 2008 to $302 million in 2010. In 2010, two 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 television agreement. 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 contract ($2.7 million), and various sources.
The biggest Chiefs expenditure in 2010 was $148 million for players, coaches, and other employees. Of the $38 million in operating earnings, Clark Lamar Jr.
, two other kids, and widow of previous group 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 revenue design remains in conflict of the normal business structure. By rearranging earnings to all teams the NFL is making sure that one group will not control the league through extreme revenues.
Roger Noll described the earnings sharing as the league's most important structural weak point, however, as there is no disincentive versus a group playing badly and the largest cost item, player salaries, 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 shows an application of the NFL scheduling formula. The Buccaneers in 2020 (highlighted in green) finished in 2nd location in the NFC South in 2021, the Buccaneers will play two games versus each of its division rivals (highlighted in light blue), one video game versus each group in the NFC East AFC East (highlighted in yellow), one game each against the second-place finishers in the NFC North NFC West (highlighted in orange) and one game against the team who finished second in the AFC South (highlighted in pink).
Presently, the 14 opponents each team deals with 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 first Monday in September) and concluded the week after New Year.
The opening video game of the season is generally a home video game on a Thursday for the league's protecting champ.
Most NFL video games are used Sundays, with a Monday night video game usually held at least when a week and Thursday night games taking place on a lot of weeks as well.
NFL games are not normally played on Fridays or Saturdays till late in the regular season, as federal law forbids professional football leagues from competing with college or high school football. Because high school and college groups normally play video 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 video games late in the season prevail, the league hardly ever holds Friday games, the most recent one being on Christmas Day in 2020.
NFL games are rarely arranged for Tuesday or Wednesday, and those days have actually only been used three times because 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 conflict with the Democratic National Convention and in 2020, when a video game was delayed from Sunday to Tuesday due to players evaluating positive for COVID-19 NFL regular season matchups are identified according to a scheduling formula. Within a division, all 4 teams play 14 out of their 17 games against typical challengers or each other–-- two games (house and away) are played against the other 3 groups in the department, while one game is held against all the members of a department from the NFC and a department from the AFC as identified by a turning cycle (3 years for the conference the group remains 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 example, if a team finishes first in its department, it will play 2 other first-place groups in its conference, while a team that ends up last would play two other last-place teams in the conference. The final game is an inter-conference based on a rotating cycle and determined by previous season's standings.
In total, each group plays 17 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 regular season, the exact dates and times for NFL games are not identified up until much later on due to the fact that the league has to represent, among other things, the Big league Baseball postseason and regional events that could position a scheduling conflict with NFL games. During the 2010 season, over 500,000 potential 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 very best schedule out of the group, almost 50 more possible schedules were developed to try to ensure that the selected schedule would be the best possible one.