Commissioner Roger Goodell has announced the NFL plans to play 3 games in London next year. Goodell claims the NFL is growing in popularity overseas and the demand has reached a fever pitch. The commissioner has even insinuated a future franchise in the UK is not out of the question. Is NFL expansion on another continent a good idea?
Absolutely not. Until Los Angeles gets a franchise (the 2nd largest market in the United States) how can you justify putting a team in London, England? It doesn't make a lot of sense to bypass a city that already has a built in fanbase for the sake of trying to expand your product to other markets. The NFL does just fine here in America without Europe's support.
In addition the travel time would be unfair to teams on the West Coast. How can you expect Seattle, San Diego, or San Francisco to fly 5,000 miles to a place with a 6 hour time difference? It's cool for a team to go over there every once in a while, but scheduling games at Wembley stadium on a consistent basis seems a little far fetched to me. They can't play teams along the Eastern seaboard every game.
Football is not Futbol and the UK is not ready to embrace the NFL wholeheartedly. They won't support an NFL franchise the same way they support Manchester United, Chelsea, or Tottenham. I understand the NFL's desire to generate new revenue streams and capitalize on idol curiosity, but that doesn't mean putting teams at a disadvantage for the sake of a few more dollars (especially when your product generates 9 billion already). I say if it ain't broke don't fix it. Your thoughts?