Recently in an interview with SkySports.com, New England Patriots owner Bob Kraft got behind the idea of having an NFL franchise in London within the next 10 years. He said this while also promoting their game with the St. Louis Rams at Wembley stadium this season.
“I personally think we should have a franchise in London, and that is something I am going to push for,” said Kraft. “I think I said that the last time we were over here in 2009 and before this next decade is out, I hope we have a team here. I think that would be right for the NFL, and this fan base has proven they deserve it.”
This is an absolutely terrible idea on so many fronts.
First of all, the travel aspect of the whole concept makes my head explode. What happens when the NFL team in London has to play a road game on the west coast in America? Using trusty Expedia.com, I searched for a flight from London to San Francisco—It’s a 10+ hour flight nonstop. You would have to leave a day in advance of a normal road game just to make it in time.
In fact, the shortest flight to a road game would be against Kraft’s Patriots, which is a seven hour snooze fest of a flight.
Not to mention eight times a year making eight different teams play a game in London, which would affect the game before and after that contest by leaps and bounds.
Plus, does England really care that much about American football? I’m willing to bet not, considering the general hatred for our country by most other countries. The overwhelming feeling would probably be why we are forcing our sport on them when they are content with their own version of football.
Fans might get excited initially, but what happens when they are faced with the reality of how much an expansion franchise is going to suck for the first few years. And how can a franchise in London expect to ever be competitive unless they have a genius scouting department? You think NFL free agents are going to want to live in London and make all those tiring commutes to road games?
I could maybe see having an independent league in Europe, but that has been tried before and failed. Maybe it’s time for the owners to stop being so greedy and leave well enough alone. The NFL is the most popular sport and makes the most money in our country of any other sport.
Enough is enough.
Jeff is an NFL Featured Columnist for RantSports.com. He contributes mainly to the New York Giants and NFL Rumors pages. He also will occasionally touch on the NBA and humorous videos involving all sports.
Follow Jeff on Twitter @Jeff_Shull