NFL Regular Season Game in Toronto?

This is from TSN's website, any thoughts?


Also this:

The more chances there are of getting an NFL game to Toronto, the merrier.

Such is the view of Blue Jays president Paul Godfrey, who applauded word yesterday that the NFL is considering another leap into international waters.

The league admitted it is considering adding a 17th regular-season game to its schedule as early as the 2009 season to enable every team in the league to play one game abroad.

"Every time Toronto can be exposed to the people in the NFL it opens another potential door to success," Godfrey said yesterday in a telephone interview.

Of more pressing concern, Godfrey admitted, is a recently completed bid to bring a regular-season game to the Rogers Centre next season.

Godfrey confirmed that a group headed by Ted Rogers and Larry Tanenbaum submitted its proposal for a 2008 NFL game.

If successful, Rogers Communications would present the game with Godfrey running the show.

The Jays boss, who has been campaigning to bring an NFL team to Toronto for decades, also acknowledged that the Argonauts were involved in the process.

[b]"We indicated to the Argos that they would be very much a part of the process," Godfrey said. "We met with the owners and we invited them to be participants.

"We would run the game but would consult with them very closely and make them part of the celebration."

Included in the proposal will be a provision that Argos season-ticket holders will get first dibs on tickets for the NFL game.

Godfrey said it will also be recommended that an Argos home game be held within a couple of days of the NFL contest to create a football celebration.[/b]

Yesterday's revelation by the league continues the initiative of first-year commissioner Roger Goodell to expand the NFL's horizons beyond the U.S. border.

Already, Goodell pushed through a regular-season game in London, England next October between the Miami Dolphins and New York Giants.

"New commissioners bring new thoughts and any time he considers stepping out internationally is good news for us," Godfrey said.

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"Every time Toronto can be exposed to the people in the NFL it opens another potential door to success," Godfrey said yesterday in a telephone interview.

I did find this statement by Godfrey somewhat confusing though, not sure what he means by this.

My exact same thoughts Earl! What does that sentence mean?


Thought some of you might enjoy this thread (in particular the part about the NHL never going international because Canada is America):

I really enjoyed that ad for the CFL a few years ago when the Argos were visiting, I think Hamilton, and the game was were going to be televised. It has a rather large young man mocking Toronto people saying "Waaa !!! we are too good for the CFL, Waaa !!! we want the NFL, Waaa !!!" I found that to be so true and very very funny. I wish they would re-run it.

Some of those ads that year were really funny and I wish they would either bring them back or make some new ones.

Come on, though there is alot of Canadian NFL fans out there (I'm not one of them), Canada will NEVER EVER get an NFL franchise. If Toronto does get one, a couple poor seasons later and the novelty will wear off. Theres a dozen or so cities in the States that would be better suited (Los Angeles maybe) for NFL teams.

Toronto is not the only place in Canada that can hold an NFL regular season game- BC Place, the Big Owe, and Commonwealth are all large enough to be considered to host games as well. I dont really think that it would affect the CFL that much, but it could be done in partnership between both leagues.

Partnership, key word Sambo. Thats what Bobby Ackles used to describe any future NFL game in Vancouver. I would hope the season ticket holders would get first crack at the tickets.

Yawn Shrine circus goes to Toronto. Next! :lol:

Rumour has it the early favourite is Edmonton.
I have a buddy in New York and he read it in one of the sports pages, I am trying to get an e-mail hopefully either the Times or Post.
The size of the stadium and the NFL trying to spread their game out west is the apparent reason stated.
I hope its true if it ever comes into Canada, any site other then Toronto is fine with me.

Let's look at the possibility of the 17th game for the NFL regular season. It means an "international" site could have a mini-season of home games of 4 games. If the CFL psonsored them, a lot of money could be made and it could help support the league. How does this sound?
Play the 4 games in 4 different venues. Edmonton in September and then BC, Toronto and Montreal (Big-O) over the next three months. In order to purchase a ticket to the NFL game, you must be a season ticket holder or at least purchase a special 3 or 4-game package to the host City's CFL Team. That team gets to keep all of the moeny from the extra fans at there game. The actual NFL game profits go to the CFL and get split among the remaining teams. The extra fans at the host team games would be bring in (3 X 30,000 fans X $25) about $2M extra and the NFL game should bring in enough to give each of the remaining teams about $2M. The games could be either in conjunction with a CFL game or on a different week-end (except the Dec. game) depending on what would work best.

Canada would have some NFL games but not have to financially keep a single NFL team viable. The NFL gets more exposure and makes more money. The CFL never then has to worry that a Toronto NFL team will sink the league. The NFL still has the CFL around to help developing players.

I see this as a huge opportunity for football to grow in Canada and a win-win for everyone.


Edmonton makes sense.

The NFL already has a following in southern Ontario.

This is about marketing and promoting their brand of football. Exposing it out west could help increase viewership and merchandising numbers. I don't think it would change those numbers so much in southern Ontario.

@narles -- Interesting read. Your ideas would allow the CFL to benefit from the internationally-hosted NFL games, but I don't see the NFL going along with most of them.

At best, I see the NFL making tickets available to CFL season ticket holders first. They may be agreeable to making them available to CFL mini-season ticket holders (as you described) second. Assuming the interest in the NFL is even a fraction of what it appears to be in England, then this alone should drive up CFL season ticket sales significantly.

They also should be willing to coordinate with the CFL so that visiting fans can attend both a CFL and NFL contest on the same weekend (during CFL season).

I also think the NFL may be interested in staging games in all of the four cities you mentioned (Vancouver, Edmonton, Toronto, and Montreal). They could do it the way you described or they could rotate the games as 2- or 4- game packages.

Good points guys, good reads. Whatever is best for the CFL and football in Canada I'm all for.

Keith Pelley came out last week in the paper here in Toronto stating how yes the Argos season ticket holders would have first rights on the tickets to a game.
No doubt this would happen in Edmonton.

I would also like to see something along the lines of if you buy an NFL ticket, you "have" to buy a ticket to the CFL game, too. (It's thrown in - just like how buying a ticket to the Grey Cup also got you a ticket to the Vanier Cup.)

Narles, I really like your idea, but I highly doubt the NFL would agree to letting the CFL take that much money. But then again, how badly do they want to play a game up here? THEY'RE the ones invading OUR turf, we should be able to "charge" them as much as we can get away with.

40,000 seats in Britian in 90 minutes ... I think a December game in Edmonton could draw 40k! It'd be pretty insane ...


Pretty amazing for a place that let the NFLE fail. lol