National Football League
Professional American football league National Football League Current season, competitors or edition:
No. of teams 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 website
including 32 teams, divided equally in between the National Football Conference (NFC) and the American Football Conference (AFC). The NFL is among the four significant 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 games and having one bye week. Following the conclusion of the routine season, 7 teams from each conference (four division winners and three wild card groups) advance to the playoffs single-elimination tournament culminating in the Super Bowl, which is normally hung on the very first Sunday in February and is played 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 Expert Football Association (APFA) prior to renaming itself the National Football League for the 1922 season. After initially figuring out champions through end-of-season standings, a playoff system was implemented in 1933 that culminated with the NFL National Championship until 1966. Following a contract to merge the NFL with the rival American Football League (AFL), the Super Bowl was initially kept in 1967 to figure out a champ between the very best groups from the two leagues and has stayed as the final game of each NFL season because the merger was finished in 1970.
Today, the NFL has the highest average presence (67,591) of any expert sports league on the planet and is the most popular sports league in the United States.
The Super Bowl is also amongst the most significant club sporting occasions in the world, with the individual video games accounting for a number 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 expert sports league by income and the sports league with the most valuable teams.
Green Bay Packers hold the most combined NFL championships with thirteen, winning 9 titles prior to the Super Bowl era and 4 Super Bowls afterwards. Since the development of the Super Bowl, the Pittsburgh Steelers New England Patriots both have one of the most championship titles at six.
Establishing 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 formation of the American Specialist Football Conference (APFC), a group who, according to the Canton Night Repository, meant to raise the requirement of professional football in every method possible, to eliminate bidding for players 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; 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 Heralds joined the league during the year). The Massillon Tigers Massillon, Ohio was also at the September 17 meeting, 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), remain in the NFL.
Akron Pros won the very first APFA (NFL) Championship in 1920.
Although the league did not preserve main standings for its 1920 inaugural season and groups played schedules that consisted of non-league challengers, the APFA granted 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 very first full week of league play happened.
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 very first in the league standings.
At the time, groups 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 two times in a season, the outcome of the second game figured out the title (the source of the 1921 controversy). This technique had actually been used given that the league's creation in 1920, however no situation had actually been encountered where two groups were connected for first. The league rapidly identified that a playoff game between Chicago and Portsmouth was required to choose the league's champ. The teams 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, however a mix of heavy snow and severe cold required the game to be moved inside to Chicago Arena, which did not have a regulation-size football field. Playing with modified rules to accommodate the smaller sized playing field, the Bears won the game 9–-- 0 and hence won the championship. Fan interest in the de facto championship game led the NFL, starting in, to divide into two divisions with a championship game to be played between the division champs.
1934 season also 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 coinciding with the elimination of a comparable ban Major League Baseball The NFL was constantly the largest professional football league in the United States; it nonetheless faced various rival professional leagues through the 1930s and 1940s. Competing leagues consisted of a minimum of 3 different Football Leagues All-America Football Conference (AAFC), on top of numerous regional leagues of varying 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 Football League), the Cleveland Browns San Francisco 49ers (the last two 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 North America 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 game, the CFL established a niche market in Canada and still makes it through as an independent league.
A new professional league, the fourth Football League (AFL), started to play in 1960. The upstart AFL started to challenge the recognized NFL in appeal, gaining rewarding tv agreements and participating in a bidding war with the NFL for free representatives and draft choices. The 2 leagues announced 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 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 2 conferences: the National Football Conference (NFC), including the majority of the pre-merger NFL teams, and the American 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 attributed to previous Commissioner Pete Rozelle, who led the league from 1960 to 1989. Overall annual presence increased from 3 million at the start of his period to 17 million by the end of his period, and 400 million global audiences enjoyed 1989's Super Bowl XXIII The NFL developed NFL Residences in 1963. The league's licensing wing, NFL Residence earns the league billions of dollars annually; Rozelle's tenure likewise marked the development 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 large increases in tv agreements and the addition of 4 expansion teams, along with the intro of league efforts to increase the variety of minorities in league and team management roles.
The league's existing Commissioner, Roger Goodell, has actually focused on decreasing the number of unlawful hits and making the sport safer, generally through fining or suspending gamers who break rules.
These actions are among many the NFL is requiring to decrease concussions and improve gamer security.
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 group beginning in, later on reducing this to eleven video games in and 10 games in, primarily due to World War II. After the war ended, the number of video 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 retained until changing to the existing sixteen-game schedule in In March 2021, the NFL formally embraced a seventeen-game schedule after acquiring the contract of the National Football League Players Association Having an odd variety of video games in the schedule will provide half the groups nine games as the house group while half the teams have only eight house video games. To decrease the perceived advantage on competitors of having more home video games, the extra house game will be rotated between the 2 conferences each year. This is since playoff berths are allocated at the conference level, so all teams within the conference will have played the very same number of house video games.
The NFL operated in a two-conference system from 1933 to, where the champions of each conference would fulfill in the NFL Championship Game. If 2 teams tied for the conference lead, they would fulfill in a one-game playoff to figure out the conference champion. In, the NFL expanded from fifteen teams to sixteen groups. Instead of simply evening out the conferences by including the growth New Orleans Saints to the seven-member Western Conference, the NFL straightened the conferences and split each into 2 four-team departments. The four department champs would satisfy in the NFL playoffs, a two-round playoff.
The NFL also operated the Playoff Bowl (formally the Bert Bell Advantage Bowl) from 1960 to 1969. Effectively a third-place game, pitting the two conference runners-up against each other, the league thinks about Playoff Bowls to have been exhibitions instead of championship game. The league ceased the Playoff Bowl in 1970 due to its understanding as a video game for losers.
Following the addition of the previous AFL teams into the NFL in, the NFL divided into two conferences with 3 departments each. The expanded league, now with twenty-six teams, would likewise feature an expanded eight-team playoff, the participants being the 3 department champions from each conference as well as one 'wild card' group (the group with the very best win percentage) from each conference. In 1978, the league included a 2nd wild card team from each conference, bringing the total variety of playoff groups to ten, and a further 2 wild card groups were included to bring the total to twelve. When the NFL broadened to 32 groups in, the league straightened, changing the division structure from three divisions in each conference to 4 divisions in each conference. As each department champion gets a playoff quote, the variety of wild card teams from each conference dropped from three to 2.
The playoffs broadened again in 2020, adding 2 more wild card teams to bring the total to fourteen playoff teams.
Roger Goodell At the corporate level, the National Football League considers itself a trade association comprised of and funded by its 32 member teams.
Up up until 2015, the league was an unincorporated not-for-profit 501(c)( 6) Section 501(c)( 6) of the Internal Profits Code offers an exemption from federal income taxation for Company 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 profit and no part of the net earnings of which inures to the advantage of any private shareholder or person..
In contrast, each individual team (except the non-profit Green Bay Packers) undergoes 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 identified it a distraction, stating the effects of the tax-exempt status of the league workplace have been mischaracterized consistently over the last few years ... Every dollar of earnings produced through tv rights fees, licensing contracts, sponsorships, ticket sales, and other methods 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 change in filing status will make no material distinction to our organization. As a result, the league office may owe around US$ 10 million in income taxes, but it is no longer needed to reveal the salaries of its executive officers.
The league has actually 3 specified officers: the commissioner, secretary, and treasurer. Each conference has actually one specified officer, the president, which is basically an honorary position with couple of powers and mainly ritualistic duties, including awarding the championship game 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 designates the secretary and treasurer and has broad authority in conflicts between clubs, gamers, coaches, and employees. He is the primary executive officer of the NFL and also has authority in employing league employees, negotiating tv contracts, disciplining people that own part or all of an NFL team, clubs, or employed individuals of an NFL club if they have breached league bylaws or devoted conduct detrimental to the welfare 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 contracts with the league, and award or strip teams of draft choices.
In extreme cases, the commissioner can use recommendations to the NFL's Executive Committee approximately and including the cancellation or forfeiture of a club's franchise or any other action, he deems necessary. The commissioner can likewise provide sanctions approximately and including a lifetime restriction from the league if a private linked to the NFL has bet on video games or failed to alert the league of conspiracies or strategies to bank on or fix video games.
The present Commissioner of the National Football League is Roger Goodell, who was chosen in 2006 after Paul Tagliabue, the previous commissioner, retired.
NFL income is from 3 primary sources: NFL Ventures (retailing), NFL Enterprises (NFL Network NFL Sunday Ticket, which the league controls), and the television contract. The league distributes such earnings similarly amongst groups, despite performance. Since February 2019 [upgrade], each group receives $255 million annually from the league's tv contract, up 150% from $99.9 million in 2010.
Many 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 group's income increased from $231 million in 2008 to $302 million in 2010. In 2010, 2 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 third was from tickets ($42.4 million), corporate 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 expenditure in 2010 was $148 million for players, coaches, and other workers. Of the $38 million in running earnings, 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 economist Richard D. Wolff, the NFL's profits design remains in breach of the normal corporate structure. By redistributing revenues to all groups the NFL is ensuring that one group will not dominate the league through excessive revenues.
Roger Noll described the profits sharing as the league's most important structural weak point, nevertheless, as there is no disincentive versus a team playing badly and the biggest expense product, gamer wages, 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 shows 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 team 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 team who completed second in the AFC South (highlighted in pink).
Currently, 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 regular season. Considering 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 home game on a Thursday for the league's safeguarding champ.
Many NFL games are played on Sundays, with a Monday night video game usually held at least when a week and Thursday night video games occurring on a lot of weeks too.
NFL video games are not typically used Fridays or Saturdays till late in the regular season, as federal law forbids expert football leagues from competing with college or high school football. Because high school and college teams typically play games on Friday and Saturday, respectively, the NFL can not hold games on those days until the Friday prior to the 3rd Saturday in December. While Saturday video games late in the season are common, the league seldom holds Friday games, the most current one being on Christmas Day in 2020.
NFL games are hardly ever arranged for Tuesday or Wednesday, and those days have actually only been utilized three times because 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 held off from Sunday to Tuesday due to gamers evaluating favorable for COVID-19 NFL routine season matches are determined according to a scheduling formula. Within a division, all 4 teams play 14 out of their 17 games against common opponents or each other–-- two games (home and away) are played against the other three groups in the department, while one game is held versus all the members of a department from the NFC and a division from the AFC as identified by a rotating cycle (3 years for the conference the team remains in, and 4 years in the conference they are not in). Two of the other games are intraconference games, identified by the standings of the previous year –-- for instance, if a group finishes initially in its division, it will play two other first-place groups in its conference, while a group that ends up last would play two other last-place groups in the conference. The last game is an inter-conference based upon a turning cycle and identified by previous season's standings.
In total, each team plays 17 games and has one bye week, where it does not play a video game.
Although a group's house and away challengers are known by the end of the previous year's regular season, the exact dates and times for NFL games are not figured out till much later since the league needs to represent, among other things, the Major League Baseball postseason and local occasions that could position a scheduling dispute with NFL video games. Throughout the 2010 season, over 500,000 possible schedules were developed by computer systems, 5,000 of which were thought about playable schedules and were reviewed by the NFL's scheduling team. After coming to what they felt was the best schedule out of the group, nearly 50 more possible schedules were developed to attempt to make sure that the picked schedule would be the best possible one.