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NFL London 2018 Speculation

Old 12-28-17, 02:21 PM
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NFL London 2018 Speculation

From a speculation standpoint, it seems that it may be easy to predict which teams will be playing in London next year, and against whom. We know the following constraints:

#1 - The NFL will play at least 5 games in London, having committed to playing 2 games in Tottenham Hotspur's new stadium in addition to the 1 at Twickenham and 2 at Wembley.
#2 - Jacksonville has committed to playing a home game there thru 2020 (2021?), and the Rams are forced to play a home game there annually until their new digs in LA are ready.
#3 - The league wants all 32 teams to have played at least once in London by the end of the 2018 season. There are six teams who haven't done so.
#4 - It's reasonable to assume that the 10 teams going would be split 5-5 or 6-4 between conferences, and that anything as unbalanced as 7-3 or worse would be avoided. It's also reasonable to assume that no division games would be moved to London unless unavoidable, keeping in mind that IND-JAX was played there last year.

Looking at the Jags and Rams and their non-division 2018 home opponents:

JAGS: Patriots, Jets, Steelers, Eagles, Redskins
RAMS: Packers, Vikings, Eagls, Chiefs, Chargers

The Eagles (twice) and Packers (once) appear on these lists, and neither have played in London yet. The Packers have indicated that they're eager to go in 2018 provided they don't have to give up a home game - I think there may be a contract clause tied to the recent stadium renovations that force them to play all 8 regular season games in Green Bay (as opposed to Milwaukee, London, etc). So it makes sense that two of the five London games will be Packers at Rams, and by default, Eagles at Jaguars.

The other four teams that need to play in London are Carolina, Seattle, Tennessee and Houston. Of those four, only TEN-HOU play each other, but that's a division game. So the NFL would need to decide whether checking the "everybody goes by 2018" box is more important than moving another game between AFC South teams to the UK or not. Can't predict which way they would go, but it gives us two distinct scenarios... one where Titans-Texans is in London, and one where Tennessee goes while Houston stays home. (I am guessing the League would allow Houston to skip this year since they played a game in Mexico in 2017 - Tennessee has never played an International game).

SCENARIO ONE (Tennessee vs Houston in London is one of the remaining three games)

Looking at the possible non-division 2018 home opponents for Seattle and Carolina, and ranking the possible visiting teams by fewest # of London games played to-date and most years elapsed since last London trip, I get the following likely games:

Chargers at Seahawks
Cowboys or Bengals at Panthers

Dallas is a better fit (1 trip to London in 2014, Cincy went in 2017), but I could see the Panthers requesting they play CIN and not DAL. Dallas is a bigger draw and would generate more revenue for Carolina if they played them in Charlotte. And besides, for the Panthers' first trip to London they'd certainly not want to see Wembley filled with European Cowboy fans. So if it comes down this way, my money says Bengals-Panthers is the London game.

SCENARIO TWO (Tennessee goes to London, Houston stays home)

Chargers at Seahawks
Cowboys at Panthers & Jets at Titans (if you pick the two most likely visiting teams)
Bengals at Panthers & Jets at Titans (if Carolina asks the NFL to give them Dallas in Charlotte)

WRAPPING IT ALL UP

I believe that four of the five London 2018 games are likely to be:

Packers at Rams
Eagles at Jaguars
Chargers at Seahawks
Bengals at Panthers

With the final game being Jets at Titans *or* Titans vs Texans.
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Old 12-28-17, 02:25 PM
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Re: NFL London 2018 Speculation

I could be waaay off, of course. The above is just an educated guess based on the known "rules" regarding who has to play in London next year and the way the opponents for each team are lining up.
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Old 12-28-17, 02:59 PM
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Re: NFL London 2018 Speculation

^ I have nothing to add.
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Old 12-28-17, 04:07 PM
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Re: NFL London 2018 Speculation

The one time the Chiefs went, they had to give up a home game. Since they did that once before, I would be okay with it as long as they are a visiting team.
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Old 12-28-17, 04:56 PM
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Re: NFL London 2018 Speculation

We all know the darlings of the NFL won't have to give up anyone game. So only way the Pats, Packers and Cowboys go is if they are visitors.
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Old 12-28-17, 05:02 PM
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Re: NFL London 2018 Speculation

I would hope the Seahawks would refuse to give up a home game as well. That kind of BS should be reserved for teams that don't sell out every game.
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Old 12-28-17, 05:30 PM
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Re: NFL London 2018 Speculation

Originally Posted by hdnmickey View Post
I would hope the Seahawks would refuse to give up a home game as well. That kind of BS should be reserved for teams that don't sell out every game.
No it shouldn't. Everyone should have to go on rotating schedule. Bullshit that certain teams won't have to go.

Last edited by Deftones; 12-28-17 at 05:52 PM.
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Old 12-28-17, 05:48 PM
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Re: NFL London 2018 Speculation

All should play at least one game there? Sure. But the giving up of home games should be left to the teams that volunteer or can't sell out their games (usually those that volunteer).
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Old 12-28-17, 05:48 PM
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Re: NFL London 2018 Speculation

The Raiders should play all of their home games in London.
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Old 12-28-17, 05:52 PM
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Re: NFL London 2018 Speculation

Originally Posted by hdnmickey View Post
All should play at least one game there? Sure. But the giving up of home games should be left to the teams that volunteer or can't sell out their games (usually those that volunteer).
Nope. If you want parity, only fair way to do it.
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Old 12-28-17, 06:03 PM
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Re: NFL London 2018 Speculation

I'm good with less parity if it means not all teams have to give up a home game. There already were huge disparities in schedule and travel anyway even before they started this London game BS.
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Old 12-28-17, 07:31 PM
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Re: NFL London 2018 Speculation

Originally Posted by hdnmickey View Post
I'm good with less parity if it means not all teams have to give up a home game. There already were huge disparities in schedule and travel anyway even before they started this London game BS.
Doesn't matter. NFL needs to be equitable when it comes to this regard. Yes west coast to London sucks. They just need to do a better job scheduling this prior to bye weeks or something.
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Old 12-29-17, 10:00 AM
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Re: NFL London 2018 Speculation

Originally Posted by Deftones View Post
Doesn't matter. NFL needs to be equitable when it comes to this regard. Yes west coast to London sucks. They just need to do a better job scheduling this prior to bye weeks or something.
If the Mexico City thing becomes a yearly thing, can rotate through the western teams as hosts for that.

Regardless, barring volunteers (like the Jags or SB hosts (which I think now have to host a London game to get a SB)), everyone should have to surrender a home game in turn if they continue playing in foreign markets.
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Old 12-29-17, 10:15 AM
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Re: NFL London 2018 Speculation

It's far better for it be Mexico City if they are going to force WC teams to give up a home game. But I'm still in favor of just letting teams continue to volunteer to give up home games, including giving them incentives to do so if necessary.
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Old 12-29-17, 10:39 AM
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Re: NFL London 2018 Speculation

Whatever happened to the Toronto experiment. Everyone and their brother knew that the Buffalo Bills weren't moving and I am sure that pissed off the CFL.

The CFL should move a team to Detroit,Windsor Ont. and as an expansion team win the Grey Cup in their very first year and make the Detroit Lions look like jackasses for going 60 years with only one playoff win.

If the NFL (for a fact) was going to expand should play neutral site games in the USA (San Antonio,San Diego,etc) too show these cities that they are serious about expansion.
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Old 12-29-17, 12:20 PM
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Re: NFL London 2018 Speculation

Originally Posted by dvd-4-life View Post
Whatever happened to the Toronto experiment. Everyone and their brother knew that the Buffalo Bills weren't moving and I am sure that pissed off the CFL.
The Bills in Toronto thing really made no sense.
The NFL has a big following in Toronto/Southern Ontario, but Rogers charging crazy prices to watch someone else's team play back-fired big time.

First, the NFL fans here aren't just fans of the Bills... there are plenty of Steelers, Cowboys, Packers, Lions, Patriots and Niner fans here.

Secondly, if people here wanted to see an NFL game - they could simply pay a MUCH cheaper price and go to Detroit or Buffalo to watch... which is what they normally do. The Bills get around 20% of their stadiums filled with Canadians... and Lions are probably at 15% or so.

London sold tickets well because their fans don't have the luxury of driving 1 hour to Detroit or Buffalo to watch games, so these games are their only reasonable opportunity.

I think the NFL has tapped out in the US and are looking at growing the game globally. While TV ratings for the NFL has dropped in the US the last few years, it's actually growing in Canada. I think eventually Toronto and Vancouver will get a team.
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Old 12-29-17, 12:38 PM
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Re: NFL London 2018 Speculation

Originally Posted by hdnmickey View Post
\ But I'm still in favor of just letting teams continue to volunteer to give up home games, including giving them incentives to do so if necessary.
Sure they give the owners incentives. What about the cities that are supposedly getting so much economic stimulation from an NFL team? After laying out $750M of taxpayer money to bring the fucking Raiders to Las Vegas, I'm going to be PISSED if we don't even get our eight lousy home games in a given season with the tiny economic boost that they allegedly provide.

I don't know what the incentives are. Maybe the city does get some benefits for missed home games from the NFL, but I doubt it.
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Old 12-29-17, 01:01 PM
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Re: NFL London 2018 Speculation

Can they just end it already. The WASHINGTON Redskins shouldn't have to play a "home game" across the Atlantic Ocean. Same goes for any team. They're screwing the fans of that team that only have 8 days a year to see their team play at home. Just another is a long line of bad decisions by the league.
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Old 12-29-17, 02:43 PM
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Re: NFL London 2018 Speculation

Oh just wait.... the owners will pick the worst possible solution: Add a 17th game to everyone's schedule, but make them play once a year overseas where NEITHER team is the "home" team.
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Old 12-29-17, 04:46 PM
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Re: NFL London 2018 Speculation

Originally Posted by kenbuzz View Post
Oh just wait.... the owners will pick the worst possible solution: Add a 17th game to everyone's schedule, but make them play once a year overseas where NEITHER team is the "home" team.
I would be perfectly fine with that ... if they reduced the pre-season games by at least 1 .. ideally 2
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Old 12-30-17, 11:54 AM
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Re: NFL London 2018 Speculation

As far as the 2018 speculation goes, here's a summary regarding all 32 teams:

Those who *will* lose a home game to play in London next year:

Jacksonville
LA Rams

Those who have not yet played a game in London, but who are likely to go in 2018:

Carolina
Green Bay
Houston - has played in Mexico City but not in London
Philadelphia
Seattle
Tennessee

All of the teams who have played in the International series, ranked as shown below the table. The implication is that teams higher up on this list would be more likely to be tapped to play sooner than those further down:

1. Houston (0.5*, 2016, away)
2. LA Chargers (1, 2008, away)
3. Denver (1, 2010, away)
4. Chicago (1, 2011, away)
5. Pittsburgh (1, 2013, away)
6. Dallas (1, 2014, away)
7. Atlanta (1, 2014, home)
8. Buffalo (1, 2015, away)
= NY Jets (1, 2015, away)
9. Kansas City (1, 2015, home)
10. Indianapolis (1, 2016, away)
= Washington (1, 2016, away)
11. Cincinnati (1, 2016, home)
12. Arizona (1, 2017, away)
= Baltimore (1, 2017, away)
13. Cleveland (1, 2017, home)
14. Tampa Bay (2, 2011, home)
15. San Francisco (2, 2013, away)
16. Detroit (2, 2015, away)
17. NY Giants (2, 2016, away)
18. Minnesota (2, 2017, away)
= New Orleans (2, 2017, away)
19. Oakland (2*, 2017, home)
20. New England (2.5*, 2017, away)
21. LA Rams (3, 2017, home)
22. Miami (4, 2017, home)
23. Jacksonville (5, 2017, home)

Teams ranked by:
(1) Fewer # of games
(2) Most years since last appearance
(3) Teams playing last as "visitor" ahead of teams playing last as "home".

* - I am arbitrarily counting Mexico City games as worth 0.5, since it's a part of the International Series (someone loses a home game), but the travel is significantly less disruptive than playing in the UK. The games have been 2016: HOU at OAK, 2017: NEP at OAK

Note also, the NFL has recently adopted a policy where the team that hosts the Super Bowl plays in London that season. Super Bowl LIII is in Atlanta, so if the league gives that "rule" priority over "everybody must play there by the end of 2018" then the Falcons seem to be one of your designated 2018 teams.
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Old 12-30-17, 12:05 PM
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Re: NFL London 2018 Speculation

I will say this for London NFL football: it did legitimize bringing the NFL to Las Vegas.
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Old 12-30-17, 03:24 PM
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Re: NFL London 2018 Speculation

Great write ups Ken! Didn't realize only six teams haven't played across the pond yet. Yeah, the Hawks are due, I guess the Chargers game is as good as any.
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Old 12-30-17, 03:30 PM
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Re: NFL London 2018 Speculation

Originally Posted by Decker View Post
I will say this for London NFL football: it did legitimize bringing the NFL to Las Vegas.
No doubt. That was the biggest hypocrisy of all. This was a league that denied "Vegas - what happens in Vegas...." commercials during a SB.
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Old 01-09-18, 12:42 PM
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Re: NFL London 2018 Speculation

Linky: http://www.nfluk.com/news/internatio...5-23215a598e2a

The announcement will be on Thursday at 3:45pm GMT. That's 10:45am ET.


I've read this morning that the Raiders have volunteered to give up a home game (possibly hosting Seattle), and that the Rams' obligatory game is likely to be in Mexico City rather than the UK.
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