National Football League
Professional American football league National Football League Current season, competitors or edition:
No. of groups 32
Nation United States [A] Park Avenue New York NY Tampa Bay Buccaneers Green Bay Packers [B] TELEVISION partner(s) United States:
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consisting of 32 teams, divided equally 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 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 teams 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 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 figuring out champs through end-of-season standings, a playoff system was executed in 1933 that culminated with the NFL Championship Game up until 1966. Following an arrangement to combine the NFL with the rival Football League (AFL), the Super Bowl was initially held in 1967 to identify a champion in between the very best groups 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 participation (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 specific games representing a number of the most watched tv programs in American history and all occupying the Nielsen's Leading 5 tally of the all-time most seen U.S. television broadcasts by 2015.
The NFL is the most affluent professional sports league by revenue and the sports league with the most important groups.
Green Bay Packers hold the most combined NFL championships with thirteen, winning 9 titles before the Super Bowl period and four Super Bowls later on. Considering that the development of the Super Bowl, the Pittsburgh Steelers New England Patriots both have the most championship titles at six.
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 automobile display room in Canton, Ohio This meeting led to the formation of the American Expert Football Conference (APFC), a group who, according to the Canton Night Repository, planned to raise the requirement of expert football in every method possible, to eliminate bidding for gamers between competing clubs and to protect cooperation in the development of schedules.
Another meeting was hung on September 17, 1920 with agents from groups from four 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 renamed to the American Expert Football Association (APFA).
The league chosen Jim Thorpe as its first president, and included fourteen teams (the Buffalo All-Americans Chicago Tigers Columbus Panhandles Detroit Heralds 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. Just 2 of these teams, 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) Championship in 1920.
Although the league did not keep main standings for its 1920 inaugural season and teams played schedules that included non-league opponents, the APFA granted the Akron Pros the championship by virtue of their The very first occasion happened 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 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 portion (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 2 groups played two times in a season, the result of the 2nd video game determined the title (the source of the 1921 controversy). This technique had actually been used because the league's production in 1920, but no situation had actually been experienced where two groups were tied for first. The league rapidly identified that a championship game between Chicago and Portsmouth was needed to choose the league's champ. The groups were originally arranged to play the playoff game, formally a regular-season game that would count towards the routine season standings, at Wrigley Field in Chicago, but a mix of heavy snow and extreme cold required the video game to be moved indoors to Chicago Arena, which did not have a regulation-size football field. Having fun with modified guidelines to accommodate the smaller sized playing field, the Bears won the video game 9–-- 0 and therefore won the champion. Fan interest in the de facto championship game led the NFL, beginning in, to divide into two departments with a national championship to be played between the department champions.
1934 season likewise marked the very first of twelve seasons in which African Americans were absent from the league. The de facto restriction was rescinded in, following public pressure and accompanying the elimination of a similar restriction Big league Baseball The NFL was constantly the biggest expert football league in the United States; it nonetheless faced many rival professional leagues through the 1930s and 1940s. Rival leagues included at least three separate American Football Leagues All-America Football Conference (AAFC), on top of different regional leagues of differing caliber. 3 NFL teams trace their histories to these rival leagues, consisting of the Los Angeles Rams (who came from a 1936 model of the Football League), the Cleveland Browns San Francisco 49ers (the last 2 of which originated from the AAFC). By the 1950s, the NFL had a reliable 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 specific niche market in Canada and still endures as an independent league.
A brand-new expert league, the 4th American Football League (AFL), began to play in 1960. The upstart AFL started to challenge the established NFL in popularity, acquiring rewarding tv agreements and taking part in a bidding war with the NFL totally free agents and draft choices. The 2 leagues revealed a merger on June 8, 1966, to take full 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 reorganized into two conferences: the National Football Conference (NFC), consisting of the majority of the pre-merger NFL groups, and the Football Conference (AFC), including all of the AFL groups in addition to three pre-merger NFL groups.
Today, the NFL is the most popular sports league in North America; much of its development is credited to previous Commissioner Pete Rozelle, who led the league from 1960 to 1989. General yearly participation increased from 3 million at the beginning of his tenure to 17 million by the end of his tenure, and 400 million global audiences viewed 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 yearly; Rozelle's tenure also marked the development of NFL Charities and a nationwide collaboration with United Method Paul Tagliabue was elected as commissioner to succeed Rozelle; his seventeen-year tenure, which ended in 2006, was marked by large increases in tv agreements and the addition of four growth teams, along with the intro of league initiatives to increase the number of minorities in league and team management functions.
The league's existing Commissioner, Roger Goodell, has actually focused on lowering the number of illegal hits and making the sport safer, generally through fining or suspending players who break rules.
These actions are amongst lots of the NFL is taking to reduce concussions and enhance gamer security.
Season and playoff development
From 1920 to 1934, the NFL did not have a set number of games for groups to play, rather setting a minimum. The league mandated a twelve-game routine season for each team beginning in, later shortening this to eleven games in and 10 games in, primarily due to The second world war. After the war ended, the number of games returned to eleven games in, and later on back to twelve in 1947. The NFL went to a fourteen-game schedule in, which it retained up until switching 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 games in the schedule will offer half the teams nine games as the home group while half the groups have only eight house games. To reduce the viewed benefit on competitors of having more house 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 allocated at the conference level, so all groups within the conference will have played the exact 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 Championship Game. If 2 teams 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. Instead of simply evening out the conferences by including the expansion New Orleans Saints to the seven-member Western Conference, the NFL straightened the conferences and divide each into two four-team divisions. The four department champions would meet in the NFL playoffs, a two-round playoff.
The NFL also operated the Playoff Bowl (officially the Bert Bell Advantage Bowl) from 1960 to 1969. Efficiently a third-place video game, pitting the two conference runners-up against each other, the league considers Playoff Bowls to have been exhibitions instead of playoff games. The league discontinued the Playoff Bowl in 1970 due to its understanding as a game for losers.
Following the addition of the previous AFL teams into the NFL in, the NFL divided into 2 conferences with three departments each. The broadened league, now with twenty-six groups, would likewise include an expanded eight-team playoff, the individuals being the three department champs from each conference as well as one 'wild card' group (the team with the best win percentage) from each conference. In 1978, the league included a second wild card group from each conference, bringing the total number of playoff groups to 10, and an additional 2 wild card groups were added in to bring the overall to twelve. When the NFL broadened to 32 groups in, the league realigned, altering the division structure from 3 departments in each conference to four departments in each conference. As each department champion gets a playoff quote, the variety of wild card teams from each conference dropped from three to two.
The playoffs broadened once again in 2020, including two more wild card teams to bring the overall to fourteen playoff teams.
Roger Goodell At the corporate level, the National Football League considers itself a trade association made up of and funded by its 32 member groups.
Up till 2015, the league was an unincorporated not-for-profit 501(c)( 6) Section 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 expert football leagues (whether or not administering a pension fund for football gamers), not arranged for earnings and no part of the net profits of which inures to the benefit of any private shareholder or individual..
On the other hand, each individual team (other than the non-profit Green Bay Packers) undergoes tax since they earn 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 labeled it a distraction, saying the impacts 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 costs, licensing contracts, sponsorships, ticket sales, and other means 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 modification in filing status will make no material difference 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 incomes of its executive officers.
The league has actually three specified officers: the commissioner, secretary, and treasurer. Each conference has actually one specified officer, the president, which is basically an honorary position with few powers and mostly ceremonial responsibilities, consisting of granting the conference championship 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 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 in between clubs, gamers, coaches, and employees. He is the primary executive officer of the NFL and likewise has authority in employing league workers, negotiating tv agreements, disciplining individuals that own part or all of an NFL group, clubs, or employed people of an NFL club if they have broken league bylaws or dedicated conduct damaging to the welfare of the League or professional football.
The commissioner can, in the event of misconduct by a celebration connected with the league, suspend people, hand down a fine of as much as US$ 500,000, cancel agreements with the league, and award or strip teams of draft choices.
In extreme cases, the commissioner can provide recommendations to the NFL's Executive Committee as much as and including the cancellation or loss of a club's franchise or any other action, he deems essential. The commissioner can also issue sanctions up to and including a life time ban from the league if a specific linked to the NFL has actually banked on games or failed to inform the league of conspiracies or strategies to bet on or repair video games.
The existing 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 television agreement. The league disperses such earnings similarly among groups, regardless of efficiency. As of February 2019 [upgrade], each group gets $255 million each year from the league's tv contract, up 150% from $99.9 million in 2010.
The majority of NFL teams' financial statements are secret.
The Kansas City Star acquired the Kansas City Chiefs' tax returns for 2008–-- 2010. According to the Star, the team's profits rose from $231 million in 2008 to $302 million in 2010. In 2010, 2 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 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 miscellaneous sources.
The largest Chiefs cost in 2010 was $148 million for players, coaches, and other staff members. Of the $38 million in operating income, 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 economist Richard D. Wolff, the NFL's revenue design is in conflict of the typical business structure. By rearranging profits to all groups the NFL is making sure that one team will not dominate the league through excessive earnings.
Roger Noll described the income sharing as the league's crucial structural weak point, however, as there is no disincentive against a group playing badly and the largest cost product, player salaries, is topped.
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) ended up in second place in the NFC South in 2021, the Buccaneers will play 2 games versus each of its department competitors (highlighted in light blue), one game against 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 game against the group who finished second in the AFC South (highlighted in pink).
Currently, the 14 challengers each group 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. Because 2021, the season has actually begun the week after Labor Day (the very first Monday in September) and concluded the week after New Year.
The opening game of the season is typically a house video game on a Thursday for the league's defending champion.
Many NFL games are used Sundays, with a Monday night game normally held at least when a week and Thursday night video games occurring on most weeks also.
NFL games are not usually used Fridays or Saturdays till late in the regular season, as federal law prohibits professional football leagues from competing with college or high school football. Since high school and college teams 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 3rd Saturday in December. While Saturday games late in the season are common, the league rarely holds Friday games, the most current one being on Christmas Day in 2020.
NFL video games are hardly ever scheduled for Tuesday or Wednesday, and those days have just been utilized 3 times given that 1948: in 2010, when a Sunday 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 routine season matches are figured out according to a scheduling formula. Within a department, all four teams play 14 out of their 17 video games against typical challengers or each other–-- 2 video games (home and away) are played against the other three teams in the department, while one game is held against 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 group remains in, and 4 years in the conference they are not in). 2 of the other video games are intraconference games, identified by the standings of the previous year –-- for instance, if a group ends up first in its department, it will play 2 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 last video game is an inter-conference based upon a turning cycle and figured out by previous season's standings.
In overall, each team plays 17 games and has one bye week, where it does not play a game.
Although a group's house and away challengers are known by the end of the previous year's routine season, the exact dates and times for NFL video games are not determined until much later on since the league has to represent, to name a few things, the Major League Baseball postseason and local occasions that might present a scheduling conflict with NFL games. During the 2010 season, over 500,000 possible schedules were produced by computers, 5,000 of which were thought about playable schedules and were evaluated by the NFL's scheduling team. After arriving at what they felt was the very best schedule out of the group, nearly 50 more prospective schedules were developed to try to ensure that the chosen schedule would be the very best possible one.