NFL Trading Talks
The National Football League ( NFL ), in Spanish known as the National Football League, is the largest professional football league in the United States. The NFL takes the legal figure of a sports association, controlled by its own members. 1 It was created by eleven teams in 1920 as the American Professional Football Association, changing its name to the American Professional Football League in 1921 to modify it once again with the name now in force in 1922. Currently, the NFL is made up of 32 franchises established in various cities and regions of the United States. It is divided into two conferences: the National ( NFC ) and the American ( AFC ). In turn, each meeting consists of four divisions (North, South, East, and West) and each of them, by four different teams.
The regular season consists of a seventeen-week calendar during which each team has a rest (called bye week ), consisting of six games against rivals of the same division, as well as several interdivisional and interferential duels. It begins on Thursday night of the first full week of September (the Thursday after Labor Day ) and continues until the beginning of January. In the end, six teams – the four division champions and two guests or wild cards – of each conference play the playoffs or playoffs. After that, comes the final of each conference, where the winning champions of each go directly to the dream game, known as Super Bowl. Last week the Pro Bowl was played, in which both conferences are integrated by their best players of that year.
Despite having considered baseball as the “national pastime of the United States,” American football is the sport most popular in that country. According to the Harris Poll poll, seconded by the Harris Interactive company, professional football was ahead of baseball as a favorite sport in 1965, when the American Football League, then a rival NFL league, emerged as a great league of professional American football. American football has remained a favorite sport since then. In a 2008 Harris Poll, the NFL was the favorite sport of almost the same people (30%) as of the next four sports together – baseball (15%), motor racing (10%), hockey (5%) and professional basketball male (4%) -. In addition, American football television ratings in the United States exceed those of other sports. On top of that, college football is currently the third most popular sport in the United States, with 12% of respondents considering it as their favorite. Therefore, a total of 42% of Americans consider some level of American football (professional or university) as their favorite sport.
The NFL has the highest audience attendance per game of all professional leagues in the world, attracting 67,000 spectators in each game in the 2006 and 2007 seasons. However, the total public attendance in gross terms of the NFL only accounts for approximately 20% of Major League Baseball (MLB), given that this dispute ten times more matches.
Main article: American Football League
The growth of the NFL in early 1958 was so rapid and overwhelming that it managed to beat baseball as the favorite sport of fans of the United States of America. This also aroused the interest of entrepreneurs and their appetite to acquire an existing franchise or create a new one. Such was the case of Texan businessman Lamar Hunt, who presented a purchase offer, which was eventually rejected. This led to Hunt and some other businessmen deciding to form a new association with ten teams that they called American Football League (AFL), which would become a serious NFL rival.
The AFL introduced novel changes to this sport, contributing even more to a competent rivalry with the NFL. It was the installation of an official clock visible to fans during the game, the names of the players in the jerseys and a more aggressive offensive system by air facilitated by the new rule of free substitutions during the match, which eventually led to the specialization of positions. Another circumstance that differentiated it from the NFL was its attitude towards the black race: the AFL included black players and actively recruited players in universities historically discarded and marginalized by the NFL. Subsequently, the NFL teams included black players in tacitly prohibited positions for them in the NFL, such as quarterback and middle linebacker. In January 1965 there was a boycott of the 1964 AFL star game in New Orleans on the grounds of discrimination against black players by some luxurious and cheap hotels and businesses in the city. It was an act of activism for freedoms and social rights that have been honored by the Pro Football Hall of Fame. The new league also secured financially by deciding to share, with the other teams, the profits received from television and box office rights in their meetings.
The AFL forced the expansion of the NFL: the Dallas Cowboys were created to compete with the Dallas Texans of the AFL created at the same time. In 1963, the Dallas Texans changed their headquarters to Kansas City and were renamed the Kansas City Chiefs; the Minnesota Vikings were a donation made in favor of Max Winter for leaving the AFL; the Atlanta Falcons went to Rankin Smith to dissuade him from acquiring the Miami Dolphins.
The NFL-AFL merger
Main article: Fusion of the AFL-NFL
The Dallas Cowboys in a 2008 game.
The competition that faced both leagues for the acquisition of players, including different college drafts, led to considerable salary increases. In 1965, in one of the most contentious struggles with the balance in favor of the AFL, the quarterback from the University of Alabama Joe Namath signed with the New York Jets in preference rather than the St. Louis Cardinals in the NFL for a wage record of $ 427,000. In 1966, the manager of the AFL Al Davis set himself the objective of carrying out a campaign to remove players from the NFL, especially quarterbacks, but, behind his back, several owners of different teams began to make contact to end that cold rivalry. Between the two big leagues.
In an agreement formalized by AFL founder Lamar Hunt and Dallas Cowboys manager Tex Schramm, the two leagues officially announced their merger on June 8, 1966. The leagues would have a common Draft and organize a season finale game. To decide the champion between the two leagues (later it would be called Super Bowl ), which over the years would become the highest symbol of American football and the celebration that more spectators call each year worldwide. There was still one more city that would receive a franchise thanks to the AFL, New Orleans, which was presented with a new team in the NFL for the approval of Public Law 89-800 promoted by Federal Congressmen of Louisiana, which allowed the merger and disallowed all exceptions related to anti-monopoly restrictions. In 1970, the leagues were completely merged into a new one adopting the current name of the National Football League, being divided into two conferences with an equal number of teams each. There was also a financial agreement whereby the AFL teams would pay a total of $ 18 million for 20 years. There was also an objection by many AFL fans about the loss, due to the merger, of the identity of their league, their logo and their name.
The NFL today
The NFL continued to grow, expanding several times to its current structure of 32 franchises, or 32 teams, while the Super Bowl has become more than just a football championship. As one of the most televised events annually in the United States, has become a major source of advertising revenue for the television networks that have broadcast it and has served as a catapult to advertisers to initiate great advertising campaigns for new products. The NFL has grown to the point of being the most populous in terms of spectators of all US leagues.
The game between the Tennessee Titans and the Houston Texans at Reliant Stadium, in 2005.
One of the reasons that have differentiated the NFL from other major US leagues is the apparent parity between its 32 teams. Despite witnessing dominant teams from time to time, the league has been cited as one of the few in which any team has a real chance of winning the championship every year. The labor agreement agreed between the league and the Players Union (NFLPA), which establishes a salary cap system, as well as the distribution of dividends among all teams, has prevented the richest clubs from signing the best players , so that teams from small cities like the Green Bay Packers or New Orleans Saints have the opportunity to compete for the Super Bowl. One of the architects of that agreement was the former NFL manager, Paul Tagliabue, who presided over the league between 1989-2006. With the new agreements made in 1993, renewed in 1998 and 2006, the league has managed to maintain the lowest salary levels of all major US leagues and has contributed to making the NFL the only one that has not suffered players strike paralyzing activities since 1993.15
Since the arrival of Roger Goodell to the presidency of the NFL in the 2006 season, the conduct of the players has been established as a regular priority. Several talented players have experienced legal problems, from Adam “Pacman” Jones to Michael Vick. In these cases in particular and in others in general, President Goodell has severely punished conduct with lasting sanctions to those who have seriously violated the NFL’s conduct policy.
Currently, the league has offices in two cities. The main office is in New York, and due to the popularity of the NFL in the southern and southeastern states, there is a second office in Nashville.
There are 32 teams in the NFL divided into two conferences with 16 teams in each, divided into four divisions of four teams. A maximum of 53 players are allowed per franchise on their squad, but they usually only use 46 for each game during the regular season. Each team can have ten players in the practice squad, is composed of players who have not been active in 9 games of any of their seasons in the league.
Unlike the Major League Baseball (MLB), Major League Soccer (MLS), National Basketball Association (NBA) and National Hockey League (NHL), the NFL does not have a Canada- based team , primarily due to the fact that in that country there is the Canadian Football League (CFL), a Canadian football league that resembles American football in several aspects. Most of the teams are located in the East of the United States: 16 teams play under the same time zone ( Eastern Time Zone ), for only ten that do so in central time (Central Standard Time Zone ). The six teams in the time zones of the Mountains and the Pacific face a special calendar every season and cannot play at home before noon in their local time, which gives them an advantage in terms of their national exposure or visibility.
Most major metropolitan areas of the United States have a team in the NFL. In 2005, some Saints games had to be played in San Antonio, Texas, on the occasion of Hurricane Katrina. On the other hand, he speculated on the possibility of creating an NFL franchise in Toronto, the largest city in Canada. The team that, according to speculation, is more likely to move to that city are the Buffalo Bills, which currently play 130 km south of it. In addition, they played from 2008 to 2013 an annual match at the Rogers Center.
According to Forbes magazine , the Dallas Cowboys are the most expensive team in the NFL thanks to their current owner, Jerry Jones , who for many fans intervenes too much in the coach’s decisions, and is the second in the United States after the New York Yankees , with an approximate value of two thousand one hundred million dollars, fifth place worldwide.