It couldn’t happen until 2025 at the earliest, but the chances of the NFL potentially staging a Super Bowl in London someday increase with the coming advent of Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. With everyone making their Super Bowl picks right now, as the next edition is only a couple days away, it’s also time to look ahead.
The 62,062 capacity venue at White Hart Lane will open Sept 15, about a month or so after its target date, but its design includes facilities that directly support American football, in addition to English football (soccer).
According to Sports Illustrated, the National Football League put $13.3 million toward its approximate £350-£400 ($600) million construction costs.
From the locker rooms to the retractable field (among the many other new bells and whistles), Tottenham Hotspur Stadium was constructed to support both English Premier League and National Football League action, even on the same day, according to their stated plans.
The venue will replace Wembley Stadium as the London home for NFL games. That’s a major game-changer as Wembley, obviously, was not designed with American football in mind. If any NFL team were to relocate to London, the Tottenham Stadium would be its home venue.
The city has publicly declared ambitions to host a Super Bowl someday, and it’s an initiative that Tottenham Hotspur Football Club has been looking into; according to sources. There are some within the north London club who interested in making this happen.
Of course, it’s still a long shot as there are numerous logistical issues to resolve. The earliest it could even happen is seven years from now.
Here is a look at all six of the future Super Bowl dates that have been set.
|2019||Atlanta, Mercedes-Benz Stadium, Super Bowl 53|
|2020||South Florida, Hard Rock Stadium, Super Bowl 54|
|2021||Tampa Bay, Raymond James Stadium, Super Bowl 55|
|2022||Los Angeles, Los Angeles Stadium, Super Bowl 56|
|2023||Glendale, University of Phoenix Stadium, Super Bowl 57|
|2024||New Orleans, Mercedes-Benz Superdome, Super Bowl 58|
Then you have the time zone difference/kickoff time quandary. The standard 6:30pm EST kickoff is 11:30 Greenwich Mean Time, but if you moved it to the traditional NFL Sunday kick times, 1 or 4:15 PM EST, it’s 6pm or 9:15 pm in the Great Britain capital. That’s very accommodating for all involved.
While it’s been pointed out numerous times that the NFL doesn’t want to give up a prime time television slot for its marquee event, having a traditional regular season Sunday kickoff time could be appealing, especially so to a league that seems to consistently be tweaking its product and revamping its policies (which often yield results that are against the league’s interests, but that’s another story).
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell (who visited the stadium construction site in October) seems hell bent on micro-managing his league in an effort to consistently have some new facet being implemented, even when previous results have shown he should not try and fix what’s not broken.
Along those lines, the NFL is extremely determined when it comes to getting their product a foot print outside the domestic market. London has been the main location in which Goodell’s league has pushed this objective, and it’s clear they are only going to escalate, not de-escalate this initiative. London is on it too.
“My ambition is to have more American football games in London and ultimately for there to be a franchise and, dare I say it, even the Super Bowl,” London Mayor Sadiq Khan said in an interview with Talksport this past spring.
“Obviously once Spurs open up their stadium that will give us the potential to have more games there but I’m ambitious – the idea is to have eight games in London eventually, which is the number a franchise team plays and then who knows, maybe one day the Super Bowl,” Khan said.
While the idea of a London Super Bowl still faces long odds, the new Tottenham Hotspur Stadium greatly reduces those odds.
Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net and TheBank.News, which is partnered with News Now. Banks, a former writer for NBC Chicago.com and Chicago Tribune.com, is currently a regular contributor to SB Nation, WGN CLTV and Chicago Now.
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