National Football League
Expert 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 Authorities website
including 32 teams, divided equally in between the National Football Conference (NFC) and the Football Conference (AFC). The NFL is one of the four significant North American expert sports leagues, the highest expert level of American football on the planet.
eighteen-week regular season runs from early September to early January, with each group playing seventeen games and having one bye week. Following the conclusion of the routine season, seven 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 typically hung on the very 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 Expert Football Association (APFA) before renaming itself the National Football League for the 1922 season. After initially figuring out champs through end-of-season standings, a playoff system was carried out in 1933 that culminated with the NFL National Championship till 1966. Following an agreement to merge the NFL with the competing American Football League (AFL), the Super Bowl was first held in 1967 to identify a champ in 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 highest average attendance (67,591) of any professional sports league worldwide and is the most popular sports league in the United States.
The Super Bowl is also among the most significant club sporting events on the planet, with the specific video games accounting for many of the most watched tv programs in American history and all inhabiting the Nielsen's Top 5 tally of the all-time most enjoyed U.S. tv broadcasts by 2015.
The NFL is the wealthiest expert sports league by income and the sports league with the most valuable teams.
Green Bay Packers hold the most combined NFL champions with thirteen, winning nine titles before the Super Bowl age and 4 Super Bowls later on. Because the creation of the Super Bowl, the Pittsburgh Steelers New England Patriots both have one of the most championship titles at 6.
Founding 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 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 Evening Repository, planned to raise the standard of expert football in every method possible, to get rid of bidding for gamers in between competing clubs and to secure cooperation in the development of schedules.
Another conference was hung on September 17, 1920 with agents from teams 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 renamed to the American Specialist Football Association (APFA).
The league elected Jim Thorpe as its first president, and included fourteen groups (the Buffalo All-Americans Chicago Tigers Columbus Panhandles Detroit Heralds signed up with 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 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 official standings for its 1920 inaugural season and teams played schedules that consisted of non-league opponents, the APFA awarded the Akron Pros the champion by virtue of their The first event took place on September 26, 1920 when the Rock Island Independents beat the non-league St. Paul Ideals 48–-- 0 at Douglas Park On October 3, 1920, the first full 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 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, teams were ranked on a single table and the team with the greatest gaining portion (not consisting of ties, which were not counted towards the standings) at the end of the season was declared the champion; the only tiebreaker was that in the event of a tie if two teams played twice in a season, the outcome of the 2nd video game determined the title (the source of the 1921 debate). This technique had been used given that the league's production in 1920, but no situation had actually been encountered where two teams were connected for first. The league rapidly figured out that a championship game between Chicago and Portsmouth was needed to decide the league's champion. The groups were initially arranged to play the playoff game, formally a regular-season video game that would count towards the regular season standings, at Wrigley Field in Chicago, but a combination of heavy snow and extreme cold forced the video game to be moved inside to Chicago Arena, which did not have a regulation-size football field. Playing with transformed guidelines to accommodate the smaller playing field, the Bears won the game 9–-- 0 and therefore won the champion. Fan interest in the de facto championship game led the NFL, starting in, to divide into two divisions with a national championship to be played between the department champions.
1934 season also 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 coinciding with the elimination of a comparable ban Big league Baseball The NFL was constantly the largest expert football league in the United States; it nevertheless faced many rival professional leagues through the 1930s and 1940s. Competing leagues included a minimum of three separate Football Leagues All-America Football Conference (AAFC), on top of various regional leagues of differing caliber. 3 NFL teams trace their histories to these competing leagues, including the Los Angeles Rams (who came 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 expert football in the United States; its only competition in North America was the expert Canadian football circuit, which formally ended up being the Canadian Football League (CFL) in 1958. With Canadian football being a various football code than the American game, the CFL developed a niche market in Canada and still survives as an independent league.
A new expert league, the fourth Football League (AFL), started to play in 1960. The upstart AFL began to challenge the recognized NFL in popularity, getting profitable 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 typical draft and national championship. The game, the Super Bowl, was held 4 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 combined, it was rearranged into 2 conferences: the National Football Conference (NFC), consisting of the majority of the pre-merger NFL groups, and the American Football Conference (AFC), including all of the AFL teams along with 3 pre-merger NFL groups.
Today, the NFL is the most popular sports league in North America; much of its growth is attributed to former Commissioner Pete Rozelle, who led the league from 1960 to 1989. General yearly attendance increased from 3 million at the beginning of his tenure to 17 million by the end of his period, and 400 million worldwide audiences viewed 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 annually; Rozelle's period also marked the creation of NFL Charities and a nationwide collaboration with United Way Paul Tagliabue was elected as commissioner to be successful Rozelle; his seventeen-year period, which ended in 2006, was marked by large boosts in television agreements and the addition of four expansion groups, along with the introduction of league efforts to increase the number of minorities in league and team management functions.
The league's present Commissioner, Roger Goodell, has actually focused on decreasing the number of illegal hits and making the sport much safer, mainly through fining or suspending players who break rules.
These actions are amongst many the NFL is taking to minimize concussions and improve player security.
Season and playoff advancement
From 1920 to 1934, the NFL did not have a set variety of video games for teams to play, rather setting a minimum. The league mandated a twelve-game regular season for each group start in, later reducing this to eleven games in and 10 games in, mainly due to World War II. After the war ended, the variety of video games gone back to eleven video games in, and later 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 formally embraced a seventeen-game schedule after gaining the arrangement of the National Football League Players Association Having an odd number of video games in the schedule will offer half the groups 9 video games as the house team while half the groups have just 8 house video games. To lessen the perceived advantage on competition of having more home video games, the additional house video game will be rotated between the 2 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 variety 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 National Championship. If 2 groups tied for the conference lead, they would satisfy in a one-game playoff to determine the conference champion. In, the NFL expanded from fifteen groups to sixteen groups. Instead of just night out the conferences by including the growth New Orleans Saints to the seven-member Western Conference, the NFL realigned the conferences and split each into two four-team divisions. The four division champs would fulfill in the NFL playoffs, a two-round playoff.
The NFL likewise operated the Playoff Bowl (officially the Bert Bell Advantage 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 actually been exhibits rather than playoff games. The league stopped 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 divided into 2 conferences with 3 departments each. The broadened league, now with twenty-six groups, would likewise feature an expanded eight-team playoff, the participants being the three department champs from each conference as well as one 'wild card' team (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 overall number of playoff teams to 10, and a more 2 wild card teams were added in to bring the total to twelve. When the NFL expanded to 32 teams in, the league straightened, changing the division structure from three departments in each conference to 4 divisions in each conference. As each division 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 groups to bring the total to fourteen playoff groups.
Roger Goodell At the business level, the National Football League considers itself a trade association comprised of and funded by its 32 member groups.
Up up until 2015, the league was an unincorporated nonprofit 501(c)( 6) Area 501(c)( 6) of the Internal Revenue Code provides an exemption from federal income taxation for Company leagues, chambers of commerce, real-estate boards, boards of trade, or professional football leagues (whether administering a pension fund for football gamers), not arranged for profit and no part of the net profits of which inures to the benefit of any private shareholder or person..
On the other hand, each specific team (other than the non-profit Green Bay Packers) undergoes 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 labeled it a interruption, saying the results of the tax-exempt status of the league workplace have actually been mischaracterized repeatedly recently ... Every dollar of earnings produced through tv rights charges, licensing agreements, sponsorships, ticket sales, and other ways 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 an outcome, the league workplace might owe around US$ 10 million in income taxes, however it is no longer needed to reveal the wages of its executive officers.
The league has actually 3 defined officers: the commissioner, secretary, and treasurer. Each conference has one specified officer, the president, which is basically an honorary position with few powers and mostly ritualistic tasks, including awarding the conference championship prize.
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 elected 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 in between clubs, players, coaches, and workers. He is the principal executive officer of the NFL and likewise has authority in working with league employees, working out tv contracts, disciplining individuals that own part or all of an NFL team, clubs, or utilized individuals of an NFL club if they have breached league laws or dedicated conduct destructive to the well-being of the League or professional football.
The commissioner can, in case of misconduct by a celebration connected with the league, suspend individuals, by far a fine of approximately US$ 500,000, cancel agreements with the league, and award or strip groups of draft choices.
In severe cases, the commissioner can provide suggestions to the NFL's Executive Committee up to and consisting of the cancellation or forfeiture of a club's franchise or any other action, he deems required. The commissioner can also provide sanctions approximately and including a lifetime restriction from the league if a specific linked to the NFL has actually banked on games or failed to notify the league of conspiracies or plans to bank on or fix video games.
The existing Commissioner of the National Football League is Roger Goodell, who was chosen in 2006 after Paul Tagliabue, the previous commissioner, retired.
NFL earnings is from three primary sources: NFL Ventures (retailing), NFL Enterprises (NFL Network NFL Sunday Ticket, which the league controls), and the tv agreement. The league distributes such revenue equally amongst groups, regardless of efficiency. As of February 2019 [upgrade], each group receives $255 million yearly from the league's tv agreement, up 150% from $99.9 million in 2010.
Most NFL teams' 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 revenue rose from $231 million in 2008 to $302 million in 2010. In 2010, two thirds of income originated 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 contract. The remaining one 3rd 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 miscellaneous sources.
The largest Chiefs expenditure in 2010 was $148 million for players, coaches, and other staff members. Of the $38 million in running earnings, Clark Lamar Jr.
, 2 other kids, 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 revenue model is in breach of the typical business structure. By rearranging profits to all groups the NFL is guaranteeing that one team will not dominate the league through extreme incomes.
Roger Noll described the income sharing as the league's essential structural weakness, nevertheless, as there is no disincentive versus a team playing terribly and the largest expense product, gamer incomes, 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 displays an application of the NFL scheduling formula. The Buccaneers in 2020 (highlighted in green) completed in 2nd location in the NFC South in 2021, the Buccaneers will play two games versus each of its division competitors (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).
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. Given that 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 video game of the season is normally a home video game on a Thursday for the league's protecting champ.
A lot of NFL video games are used Sundays, with a Monday night video game usually held at least once a week and Thursday night video games occurring on the majority of weeks as well.
NFL games are not generally played on Fridays or Saturdays until late in the regular season, as federal law prohibits professional football leagues from taking on college or high school football. Due to the fact that high school and college teams generally play video games on Friday and Saturday, respectively, the NFL can not hold games on those days up 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 video games, the most recent one being on Christmas Day in 2020.
NFL video games are hardly ever arranged for Tuesday or Wednesday, and those days have actually only been used 3 times because 1948: in 2010, when a Sunday game was rescheduled to Tuesday due to a blizzard, in 2012, when the Kickoff game was moved from Thursday to Wednesday to prevent conflict with the Democratic National Convention and in 2020, when a game was postponed from Sunday to Tuesday due to gamers checking positive for COVID-19 NFL routine season matches are determined according to a scheduling formula. Within a department, all four teams play 14 out of their 17 games against common challengers or each other–-- two games (home and away) are bet the other 3 teams in the department, while one video game is held versus all the members of a division from the NFC and a division from the AFC as figured out by a turning cycle (three years for the conference the team remains in, and 4 years in the conference they are not in). 2 of the other games are intraconference games, determined by the standings of the previous year –-- for instance, if a team finishes initially in its division, it will play 2 other first-place teams in its conference, while a group that ends up last would play 2 other last-place groups in the conference. The last video game is an inter-conference based upon a rotating cycle and identified by previous season's standings.
In total, each group plays 17 games and has one bye week, where it does not play a game.
Although a team's home and away challengers are known by the end of the previous year's regular season, the specific dates and times for NFL video games are not identified till much later on because the league has to account for, to name a few things, the Major League Baseball postseason and local occasions that might posture a scheduling conflict with NFL games. During the 2010 season, over 500,000 prospective schedules were produced by computers, 5,000 of which were considered 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, almost 50 more possible schedules were established to try to guarantee that the picked schedule would be the best possible one.