In a monumental move, NFL team owners voted to double the league-operated international game inventory from four to up to eight games per season, starting in 2025. This decision, made during the 2023 December League Meeting in Dallas, underscores the NFL's steadfast commitment to global expansion and reaching new audiences around the world.
With the new resolution (JC-7), the NFL gains the flexibility to schedule up to eight regular-season games annually in international locations. The league plans to explore new markets and select host cities and stadiums for future seasons, with announcements expected at later dates.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell expressed the league's dedication to becoming a global sport, stating, "Increasing international game inventory allows us to grow our global presence and share our game with exciting new markets to connect with more fans around the world." The move aligns with the league's strategic priority to expand its global footprint and introduce American football to diverse audiences.
Joel Glazer, Chairman of the NFL's International Committee and owner of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, welcomed the resolution update. He remarked, "International games have been a huge success, and we are excited for the opportunity to share the sport of American football with more fans from around the world in the future."
This significant decision follows the recent announcement that the NFL will play its first-ever regular-season game in South America, specifically in São Paulo, Brazil, in 2024. The game in Brazil will mark the NFL's presence on five of the seven continents worldwide.
In addition to the São Paulo game, the 2024 NFL International Games will feature three matchups in London — two at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium and a third at Wembley Stadium, where the Jacksonville Jaguars will host a home game as part of a multi-year partnership. A fifth game will see the NFL return to Germany for the third consecutive year, with Allianz Arena in Munich serving as the venue.
The NFL initiated regular-season international games in 2005 when the Arizona Cardinals hosted the San Francisco 49ers at Estadio Azteca in Mexico City. Since then, a total of 50 international regular-season games have taken place, with London hosting 36, Toronto 6, Mexico City 5, Frankfurt 2, and Munich 1.
As outlined in the updated resolution, no club will be mandated to play more than one regular-season game outside North America in the same season unless they opt to do so voluntarily. Additionally, each club selected for an international game can designate two regular-season opponents that will be ineligible to be scheduled as their opponent in an international game. International games will not be scheduled after Week 14 of the NFL season, providing logistical clarity to teams and fans alike.
This is Dez Barnes of Pretty Girls Love Sports, a journalist on the MTMV Sports platform. She is a retired US Army veteran, professional cheerleader, pet mom, and avid sports lover. Feel free to follow her writings as she dives into the latest sports news! You can find her on all social media channels @PGLOVESPORTS.