We, as proud NFL fans, beg the mighty NFL that a franchise not be placed in the U.K.
To be honest, it’s sometimes hard to remember when all of this started without using Google. 26 of the 32 NFL teams have traveled across the pond to play our nation’s greatest game in the United Kingdom, often with minimal interest domestically. Recently, talk has started about letting the other six go over there too.
Something about what you just read probably jumped out at you. Yes, I said the NFL is still this country’s greatest game. That’s probably a shock to the system for you NBA fans, but it is what it is. The National Basketball Association has become reality television, and I, personally, spoke to 30 people, just this week, who couldn’t even tell me who the most recent participants of the World Series were. I spoke to about 30 to 40 more who couldn’t name anyone who played for the Los Angeles Dodgers or the Houston Astros.
Those are all stories for another day because I’m here to write a letter to the NFL that it may never read.
Most of us are still struggling with the Los Angeles franchises:
For about half of my young life, there were two franchises in Los Angeles, and then, for the other half of that same young life, there weren’t any. The NFL moved along just fine, but then, the mighty NFL became obsessed with moving a franchise to our great country’s second-largest city. The huge television market was too enticing to ignore. When the smoke cleared, two franchises, not one, moved to L.A. The San Diego Chargers and the Saint Louis Rams (the same franchise that left Los Angeles in the first place) became the guinea pigs.
First, let’s get something straight. The Chargers belong in San Diego. They’re playing in a soccer stadium for goodness sake. The other bad part about all of this is there’s been relatively no interest in Chargers games. They’ve fallen victim to the same issues that forced the Raiders and the Rams out of town in the first place. If the teams struggle, which the Chargers are, people don’t come. There are so many other things you can do. You know, beaches and Beverly Hills for instance.
The NBA made the same mistake once:
If you’ll remember, the NBA tried creating franchises outside of the American border. The result was the Toronto Raptors and the Vancouver Grizzlies. The former serves no purpose in a dying Eastern Conference. The latter gave up on the idea of trying to exist north of American soil and moved to Memphis, Tennessee.
That brings us back to this U.K. thing:
Dear NFL, if you haven’t learned anything from this Los Angeles Chargers thing and the NBA’s experiment in Canada, let me help you out. Some things are fine the way they are. There’s no need to put a franchise in London, just like there was no need for Mountain Dew to make a red one. The lure of expanding your brand outside of U.S. soil may sound good now, but when the franchise struggles and everyone over there finds solace in soccer (I refuse to call what they do football), you’ll then know what I’m already telling you.
Don’t do it. The league is fine how it is. That is, until you move the Raiders to Las Vegas. You’re the NFL. You’ll figure out the issues, and no “ban”, protest or loudmouth owner (yes you, Robert C. McNair) will change that.
We hate waking up so doggone early to watch the games anyway.
Exposure Magazine Sports Editor
Geoffrey Knox is the creator and the owner of The Thunderstorm Hip Hop Sports & Entertainment Network, co-editor for Inside The Iggles and a contributor for Saturday Blitz. Bookmark Thunderstorm Media on BlogtalkRadio.com, iTunes, TuneIn and Stitcher. Follow him on Twitter @GQ_4_Eva, @stormradio66 @stormsports66 & @insideiggles.
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