Why do NFL teams play games in Germany and other countries outside the US?
The NFL is playing its fifth and final international game this week in the 2023 season after playing three in London and last week in Frankfurt, Germany as well.
The NFL international series is back in Germany, this time fans will be able to watch the Colts take on the Patriots in Frankfurt.
After three games being played in London, the league is now in Germany. Last weekend the Chiefs beat the Dolphins in Frankfurt despite a no-show by Taylor Swift. European fans will have their last chance to watch a live NFL game this season, but without a doubt the “American” football stars will cross the pond in 2024 too.
NFL expansion to Europe?
The NFL has been staging games in London since 2007, with the long-term goal of the sport being permanently present in the country. This would be achieved by having a team based in London, although this has not yet materialized. Other international games have been played in Mexico and Germany and in 2024 the league will play a game in Spain.
Staging games abroad is meant to promote the sport and widen its appeal. The overseas games have drawn large crowds, with tickets to the London matches selling out within days, months before they were to take place. The first game in held in Mexico in 2005 attracted more than 100,000 spectators, and other countries are being considered as possible venues for future matches.
The international games have been doing well in terms of ticket sales, but It has yet to be clearly known whether the NFL is turning an overall profit from the series.
At the very least, the overseas matchups are increasing awareness of American football and extending the sport’s popularity across the globe.