Reports have surface that the NFL would like to extend their international popularity and move more games to the United Kingdom. The New Orleans Saints defeated the San Diego Chargers 37-32 at London's Wembley Stadium in a regular season game in 2008. Each season over the next four years, NFL coaches have agreed to play as many as two games outside of the country. This is blasphemy. Nobody even plays football outside of America. More importantly, the economic strain that has been placed on this country has made it tough enough for NFL fans to make it to games in their own fair cities. Most people can understand the decision to move games from a business approach. There is a lot of money in London. Season ticket holders can buy plane tickets in this recession, for a football game that used to be held locally. Where are the American NFL fans? No one is concerned about the father who worked overtime to get a ticket for his son, or even the middle-class family of four. Most people understand that the NFL is less about the fans and more about the money, in such economic times as these.
In 2009, the Patriots will face the Buccaneers in London. NFL.com reports that owners would have to be convinced that the league is showing true financial growth globally in order to continue giving their support to playing games out of the country. Of course they will continue to give their support, but are they willing to risk alienating their fans? Some experts feel within the next 8 years, we could see a Super Bowl Champion crowned overseas. The same Super Bowl that belongs to American fans. Has the country run out of great places to host it? I doubt it. The past three Bowls have been in either Florida or Arizona. The 2005 Super Bowl was held in Florida as well. Why not give it to a city like New Orleans? This is a wonderful place that seems to always need a lift (no pun intended). Why not place the most celebrated event in America, in America? It is unclear when the economy will improve. I would hope for it to better within the next 8 years. Still, nothing can sway the idea that this is not only wrong, but a little insulting to the fans that appreciate this game the most.