NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell is adamant that the league will have a team playing in London, England in the near future. The city has already hosted several games and the fan base is in place for a successful franchise on the other side of the pond, but adding just one team if expansion takes place makes little sense, but adding two or four could work and make this league even stronger and possibly a world-wide sport.
London is the one city getting all the attention, but several other cities could host a team if expansion takes place. Here is a look at the top places around the globe that could have a new team within the next ten years.
Los Angeles is the obvious choice for many reasons. Population and TV ratings are the two biggest assets. Despite the Rams and Raiders both calling this place home, only to leave for more money, having a team in place in Southern California just makes good business sense. Finding somewhere to play seems the biggest obstacle, but with plenty of potential sites, including the LA Coliseum, this should be the first city in the U.S. That gets a new team.
Buffalo already plays a home game in Toronto and the Bills have had success with attendance and ratings. Canada already has their own league, but Vancouver is a solid destination for a team. Seattle already has one of the best home field advantages in the league and the rabid fans in the Pacific Northwest could support another franchise, plus adding two new teams on the west coast could create new rivalries and boost TV ratings even further.
One city that doesn't get much attention. But makes sense is San Antonio, Texas. The state loves football and San Antonio is the seventh largest city in America, even large than Dallas and adding another team to this football crazed state would be a positive move for the league. This area of the state has increased in population by 4% or more each of the last four years and soon will surpass both Phoenix and Philadelphia in population and should be on the short list of cities the league looks at moving into before long.
Thinking outside the box, Australia is a solid option for the league. This country is nuts about their sport and already have the infrastructure in place to host a team. Melbourne is the best place with two stadiums already in place, including the Melbourne Cricket Grounds, that could hold over 100,000 people when turned into a football field. The league would have some trouble with logistics, but having a team from this area would create a whole new media market and with some creative marketing, one of the most successful teams financially in the league.y.
The biggest problem with expansion is money as it would likely cost any new ownership group upwards of $1 billion to start-up, but these cities have everything necessary for expansion and could make this league even stronger. With the Super Bowl already a global event, playing the game at Wembley Stadium in London or the MCG in Melbourne, would only increase the sport's popularity globally.