National Football League
Professional American football league National Football League Current season, competitors or edition:
No. of groups 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
consisting of 32 groups, divided equally in between the National Football Conference (NFC) and the American Football Conference (AFC). The NFL is one of the four major North American professional sports leagues, the highest professional level of American football in the world.
eighteen-week regular season runs from early September to early January, with each team playing seventeen games and having one bye week. Following the conclusion of the routine season, 7 groups from each conference (4 department winners and 3 wild card teams) advance to the playoffs single-elimination tournament culminating in the Super Bowl, which is generally held on the first Sunday in February and is played in 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 Specialist Football Association (APFA) before renaming itself the National Football League for the 1922 season. After initially identifying champions through end-of-season standings, a playoff system was carried out in 1933 that culminated with the NFL Championship Game until 1966. Following a contract to merge the NFL with the rival Football League (AFL), the Super Bowl was first kept in 1967 to determine a champ between the best teams from the two leagues and has stayed 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 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 events in the world, with the individual video games representing 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 watched U.S. tv broadcasts by 2015.
The NFL is the wealthiest expert sports league by income and the sports league with the most valuable groups.
Green Bay Packers hold the most combined NFL championships with thirteen, winning nine titles before the Super Bowl period and 4 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 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 auto display room in Canton, Ohio This conference resulted in the development of the American Professional Football Conference (APFC), a group who, according to the Canton Night Repository, intended to raise the standard of expert football in every method possible, to get rid of bidding for players between rival clubs and to protect cooperation in the development of schedules.
Another meeting 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 relabelled to the American Expert Football Association (APFA).
The league elected Jim Thorpe as its first president, and consisted of 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 also at the September 17 conference, however 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 maintain main standings for its 1920 inaugural season and groups played schedules that included non-league challengers, the APFA granted the Akron Pros the championship by virtue of their The first event took place 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) tied for very first in the league standings.
At the time, teams were ranked on a single table and the group with the highest gaining portion (not consisting of ties, which were not counted towards the standings) at the end of the season was declared the champ; the only tiebreaker was that in case of a tie if two groups played twice in a season, the outcome of the 2nd video game figured out the title (the source of the 1921 controversy). This technique had been used given that the league's development in 1920, but no situation had been encountered where two teams were tied for first. The league rapidly figured out that a playoff game in between Chicago and Portsmouth was needed to choose the league's champion. The groups were initially set up to play the playoff game, officially a regular-season video game that would count towards the routine season standings, at Wrigley Field in Chicago, however a combination of heavy snow and severe cold forced the game to be moved inside to Chicago Arena, which did not have a regulation-size football field. Having fun with altered guidelines to accommodate the smaller sized playing field, the Bears won the video game 9–-- 0 and hence won the champion. Fan interest in the de facto championship game led the NFL, starting in, to divide into two departments with a national championship to be played in between the division champs.
1934 season also marked the very first of twelve seasons in which African Americans were missing from the league. The de facto restriction was rescinded in, following public pressure and accompanying the removal of a comparable restriction Big league Baseball The NFL was constantly the largest professional football league in the United States; it however dealt with many rival professional leagues through the 1930s and 1940s. Competing leagues included at least 3 different American Football Leagues All-America Football Conference (AAFC), on top of numerous local leagues of differing caliber. Three NFL teams trace their histories to these competing 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 originated from the AAFC). By the 1950s, the NFL had an effective 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 video 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), began to play in 1960. The upstart AFL started to challenge the recognized NFL in appeal, getting financially rewarding tv agreements and participating in a bidding war with the NFL totally free agents and draft picks. The two leagues announced a merger on June 8, 1966, to take full effect 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 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 rearranged into 2 conferences: the National Football Conference (NFC), consisting of most of the pre-merger NFL teams, and the 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 credited to former Commissioner Pete Rozelle, who led the league from 1960 to 1989. General yearly presence increased from 3 million at the start of his period to 17 million by the end of his period, and 400 million worldwide viewers enjoyed 1989's Super Bowl XXIII The NFL developed NFL Properties in 1963. The league's licensing wing, NFL Properties makes the league billions of dollars every year; Rozelle's period also marked the production of NFL Charities and a national collaboration with United Way Paul Tagliabue was chosen as commissioner to prosper Rozelle; his seventeen-year tenure, which ended in 2006, was marked by big boosts in tv agreements and the addition of 4 growth groups, in addition to the introduction of league efforts to increase the number of minorities in league and team management roles.
The league's current Commissioner, Roger Goodell, has focused on decreasing the variety of unlawful hits and making the sport more secure, mainly through fining or suspending players who break rules.
These actions are amongst many the NFL is taking to reduce concussions and improve player safety.
Season and playoff advancement
From 1920 to 1934, the NFL did not have a set variety 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 shortening this to eleven games in and 10 games in, mainly due to The second world war. 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 kept till changing to the present sixteen-game schedule in In March 2021, the NFL officially adopted 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 offer half the teams 9 video games as the house group while half the teams have just eight house games. To reduce the viewed benefit on competitors of having more house video games, the additional home game will be turned in between the 2 conferences each year. This is since playoff berths are designated at the conference level, so all teams within the conference will have played the exact same number of home video games.
The NFL ran in a two-conference system from 1933 to, where the champions of each conference would satisfy in the NFL Championship Game. If 2 groups tied for the conference lead, they would fulfill in a one-game playoff to determine the conference champ. In, the NFL expanded from fifteen teams to sixteen teams. 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 split each into 2 four-team divisions. The 4 department champions would satisfy 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. Efficiently a third-place game, pitting the two conference runners-up against each other, the league thinks about Playoff Bowls to have actually been exhibitions rather than championship game. The league discontinued the Playoff Bowl in 1970 due to its perception as a video game for losers.
Following the addition of the former AFL groups into the NFL in, the NFL split into two conferences with 3 departments each. The broadened league, now with twenty-six teams, would also include an expanded eight-team playoff, the participants being the 3 division champions from each conference in addition to one 'wild card' team (the group with the best win percentage) from each conference. In 1978, the league added a 2nd wild card team from each conference, bringing the total variety of playoff groups to 10, and a more 2 wild card teams were added in to bring the overall to twelve. When the NFL broadened to 32 teams in, the league realigned, changing the division structure from three divisions in each conference to four departments in each conference. As each division champion gets a playoff bid, the variety of wild card groups from each conference dropped from 3 to 2.
The playoffs broadened once again in 2020, including 2 more wild card groups to bring the overall to fourteen playoff groups.
Roger Goodell At the business level, the National Football League considers itself a trade association made up of and financed by its 32 member teams.
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 tax for Organization leagues, chambers of commerce, real-estate boards, boards of trade, or professional football leagues (whether administering a pension fund for football players), not arranged for profit and no part of the net revenues of which inures to the benefit of any personal investor or individual..
On the other hand, each private group (other than the non-profit Green Bay Packers) goes through tax since they make 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 interruption, stating the results of the tax-exempt status of the league workplace have been mischaracterized consistently in recent years ... Every dollar of earnings produced through tv rights fees, licensing contracts, sponsorships, ticket sales, and other methods 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 business. As an outcome, the league office may owe around US$ 10 million in earnings taxes, but it is no longer required 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 defined officer, the president, which is basically an honorary position with few powers and mainly ritualistic responsibilities, including awarding 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 appoints the secretary and treasurer and has broad authority in conflicts in between clubs, players, coaches, and employees. He is the primary executive officer of the NFL and also has authority in hiring league employees, negotiating tv contracts, disciplining people that own part or all of an NFL team, clubs, or utilized individuals of an NFL club if they have actually 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 celebration related to the league, suspend people, hand down 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 provide suggestions 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 necessary. The commissioner can likewise release sanctions approximately and consisting of a life time restriction from the league if a private connected to the NFL has banked on video games or failed to alert the league of conspiracies or plans to bank on or fix video games.
The present 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 three main sources: NFL Ventures (merchandising), NFL Enterprises (NFL Network NFL Sunday Ticket, which the league controls), and the tv contract. The league distributes such profits similarly amongst teams, no matter efficiency. Since February 2019 [update], each group gets $255 million yearly from the league's television contract, up 150% from $99.9 million in 2010.
A lot of NFL groups' financial declarations are secret.
The Kansas City Star obtained the Kansas City Chiefs' tax returns for 2008–-- 2010. According to the Star, the team's earnings increased 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 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 marketing ($3.7 million), radio agreement ($2.7 million), and various sources.
The largest Chiefs expense in 2010 was $148 million for gamers, coaches, and other workers. Of the $38 million in operating income, Clark Lamar Jr.
, two other children, and widow of previous team owner Lamar Hunt divided $17.6 million, and reinvested the staying $20 million into the team.
According to economic expert Richard D. Wolff, the NFL's earnings design is in contravention of the normal business structure. By redistributing earnings to all groups the NFL is making sure that a person team will not control the league through extreme earnings.
Roger Noll described the profits sharing as the league's most important structural weak point, however, as there is no disincentive versus a group playing terribly and the biggest expense product, player incomes, is topped.
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 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 game against 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 challengers 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. Because 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 usually a house game on a Thursday for the league's safeguarding champ.
A lot of NFL video games are used Sundays, with a Monday night game normally held at least when a week and Thursday night games occurring on many weeks as well.
NFL games are not normally played on Fridays or Saturdays till late in the routine season, as federal law restricts professional football leagues from competing with college or high school football. Due to the fact that high school and college teams typically play video games on Friday and Saturday, respectively, the NFL can not hold video games on those days until the Friday prior to the third Saturday in December. While Saturday games late in the season prevail, the league rarely holds Friday games, the most recent one being on Christmas Day in 2020.
NFL video games are seldom scheduled for Tuesday or Wednesday, and those days have only been used 3 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 conflict with the Democratic National Convention and in 2020, when a game was held off from Sunday to Tuesday due to gamers testing favorable for COVID-19 NFL routine season matches are identified according to a scheduling formula. Within a department, all 4 teams play 14 out of their 17 video games versus typical challengers or each other–-- 2 video games (house and away) are played against the other 3 teams in the division, while one video game is held versus all the members of a division from the NFC and a department from the AFC as figured out by a turning cycle (three years for the conference the team is in, and 4 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 initially in its department, it will play 2 other first-place teams in its conference, while a group that finishes last would play 2 other last-place groups in the conference. The last video game is an inter-conference based on a turning cycle and determined by previous season's standings.
In total, each team plays 17 video games and has one bye week, where it does not play a game.
Although a group's home and away opponents 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 because the league needs to account for, among other things, the Major League Baseball postseason and regional occasions that might present a scheduling conflict with NFL games. Throughout 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 group. After arriving at what they felt was the very best schedule out of the group, almost 50 more prospective schedules were established to attempt to make sure that the picked schedule would be the best possible one.