Joe Murray

Joe Murray

Adam Schefter reported over the weekend that the biggest sporting event in America could potentially be taken overseas to London in the future. Joe Murray touched on this last night in our nightly segment, “In or Out”, which you can listen to below. Let’s take a deeper look at Schefter’s report and the pros and cons of a Super Bowl in London.

 

Pros

Why would the NFL want their marquee event taken overseas? Money is the simplest answer, the NFL wants to grow their brand globally, and an overseas Super Bowl is one of the easiest and most powerful ways to do so. The Super Bowl is not just a one day, event, it’s a two-week spectacle that the NFL has grown to capitalize on monetarily more and more every year.

Another pro for the NFL hosting a Super Bowl in London is the impact it could have on them getting a franchise there one day, with the belief that this takes place before then. If a team is already in London when this takes place, then the NFL has already expanded its global brand and the Super Bowl would be the icing on the cake. If this takes place prior to a franchise being in London, it could be the push the NFL needs to secure an overseas franchise, as long as the event is well received.

London getting to host American tourists for two weeks would be a significant economic boost to local businesses, as we’ve seen every year in the States when a city gets the Super Bowl.  The main reason I believe the NFL would host a Super Bowl in London is to grow their brand on a global scale, pushing against the stigma that football is just an American sport.

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  • Cons

    What’s the downside to having a Super Bowl in London? I believe there are a significant amount of cons to hosting the biggest event in America overseas, with number one being the backlash from American teams and their fans. The backlash from teams would be completely understandable, as they already fight to host Super Bowls now due to the significance of the event and all the pomp and circumstance that goes with it.

    I mentioned the economic boost the Super Bowl brings to cities in the pros for London, so it is warranted that it is also a con for American teams. The teams and fans would be understandably frustrated, since their cities will miss out on the same chance at success. It will be a tough sell to fans if the NFL prioritizes an international venue over one of their own for the biggest event of the year.

    Not only would franchises be upset that they missed a chance to host the Super Bowl, but every fanbase in the league would have reason to be upset if access to the biggest sporting event was made much harder. Travel, boarding and tickets alone would surely be more expensive across the pond, but you’re also asking fans to get passports and travel outside the country to see their own country’s biggest event.

     

  • The most important part to the actual game though, and the biggest negative would be on the players. During a normal Super Bowl, they are asked to stay in a different city for a week and ignore all the exterior noise. In London, players would be completely unfamiliar with their surroundings and venue, throwing a massive wrench into the equation. When you are playing the biggest event in your career, any sense of normalcy can’t be overvalued, and playing in a foreign country would certainly disrupt your routine.

    As of right now, I think it’s too big of an ask by the league to host a Super Bowl overseas. Maybe in the future when they have already established a franchise and their global brand in London they can revisit the conversation. Until then, I think it’s best to reward the cities in the United States that already have franchises and could use the economic boost and everything else that comes with hosting a Super Bowl.

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