One of the big discussion points this NFL offseason is the proposed change to an 18 game regular season. NFL owners are allegedly pushing hard to add two more games, which would obviously increase the profits they and the league make. The NFL Players Association isn’t sold on the idea due to the further physical and mental damage playing two further games can cause their bodies.
The desire to move to an 18-game regular season, on the part of the owners and league, have even brought up clever ideas to add two games. One idea has been to place a 16-game limit on each player. Of course, there would be exceptions to this rule and it would most likely be shuddered within a few years of the 18-game season be employed.
There are a lot of reasons the NFL and its owners want to increase the number of games. The most important is the financial factor. The league has never been worth more money. In 2018, the Carolina Panthers were sold for $2.3 billion and advertisers paid more than $4.6 billion to be a part of the league.
Although there are apparent problems with the league, money isn’t one of them. Yet, the NFL wants even more as they fear the league will shrink. NFL owners take the “if you’re not growing, you’re dying” business cliché to heart.
In 2012, each NFL team received $180 billion at the end of the season thanks to a combination of “national media, sponsorship and licensing deals, as well as a percentage of equally shared gate receipts”. The league is a perfect indication of the greed in business, but if customers will pay to watch, attend, or advertise, then why would the NFL not try to make more?
Fan Interest in Longer Seasons
The other big reason for the NFL to increase its regular season to 18 games is fan interest. Last season’s one and only year of the Alliance of American Football showed fans want more gridiron.
Although the league flamed out due to poor central management, the AAF showed strong ratings in the early stages of the season. The NFL will have an all-new, old, rival in the XFL in 2020. The XFL will most likely experience a second short existence, but their winter/spring schedule gives fans the chance to continue watching football if they desire. The XFL could make a similar fatal more to the fall as did the USFL all those years ago, according to speculation
Gridiron football is America’s game, sorry baseball, and extending the professional season gives fans the chance to see even more. It will allow the NFL to dominate more of the year than it already does.
As sports betting becomes more wide spread in the US, the addition of two more weeks gives bookies the chance to make millions more. Key partnerships could add to the NFL and its owners in making further profits.
In January, the NFL quietly signed a partnership with Caesars Entertainment. The deal is currently worth $30 million a year. If sports betting is run through Caesars, the NFL could make even more.
Two additional NFL weeks could mean a lot more cash for all parties. With players not seeing eye to eye currently, it may take just a few tweaks before it is added.