Pro Bowl in Europe (London) ?

Discussion in ' - Patriots Fan Forum' started by italian pat patriot, Dec 7, 2006.

  1. italian pat patriot

    italian pat patriot In the Starting Line-Up

    #12 Jersey

    i have read on Espn Com that it could be that starting 2008 the Pro Bowl could be playied not more on Hawaii but outside and, if so, London could be the place.

    Also China, Japan and Australia are in the mix.

    It really seems the NFL is going to see what they will bring playing outside America...
  2. PatsWickedPissah

    PatsWickedPissah Supporter Supporter

    Disable Jersey

    Finnaly an outside venue I would like. I hate to see the Pats traveling all over hell just to promote the NFL. The Pro-Bowl does not interfere with the season so it's fine to be in Europe. Besides, the Pats are always under represented.

    Bon giourno!
  3. SaCaCh

    SaCaCh Rotational Player and Threatening Starter's Job

    #87 Jersey

    Yeah i can hear the announcers now for that game.

    "...and starting for the AFC at middle linebacker is the Patriots Don Davis...sure he finished 101st in the balloting at LB, but due to a rash of freak injuries he had to come here to Japan to represent the NFL."
  4. BruschiOnTap

    BruschiOnTap On the Game Day Roster

    The NFL will never catch on in the European mainstream with its current business model based on TV revenues. Most television in Europe is publicly funded and commercial free. My Anglo/Euro friends all ask me the same thing: why does the Super Bowl take 4 hours to play a game of 60 minutes? Sky TV doesn't air the adverts when they broadcast, they cut to washed up players to analyze recent happenings, even less entertaining (really, I've never been so bored by football strategy...) The only way for the NFL to market overseas is to allow uniform and on-field advertisements, or have the advertisements super-imposed onto the field for TV viewers like they do in rugby. No publicly funded TV station in Europe will pay the massive rights fees the NFL demands.

    Brits/Europeans also prefer sports that flow (like soccer, rugby, hockey, and [to a lesser extent] basketball), hence the mainstream popularity of rugby union versus the niche interest in rugby league (I think I got those right!) and also the steady decline in mainstream British cricket interest.

    NBA and NHL have the best shots at expanding into European markets because so many players are European these days. When I lived in Czech, everyone displayed the Rangers logo because of Jaromir Jagr and even the smallest neighborhood pub played NHL games on its TV. The NBA also has a good shot because of its flowing style and the popularity of the sport abroad.

    I'm all for adverts on uniforms if it meant no more commercials during broadcasts. I don't care if the Pats put a Gillette logo on their shoulder or chest, my blind allegiance to a revolving-door roster holding only a uniform and logo in common already exists. (The sanctity of the game itself, IMO, has already been infringed on by the NFL with its ubiquitous and unending attempts to market itself to the casual viewer as THE only form of football, in collusion with the TV networks. Analysts cater to average and unknowledgeable fans and there is an unending parade of crap you can buy with a logo on it. The NFL wants your identity to be completely wrapped up in the team you support, thus its licensed golf club covers and barbecue grills.) I'd love to watch a game uninterrupted by adverts, in under 3 hours, so that I don't buy as much beer at the bar and don't burn out on watching more football later. The other solution, besides adverts on uniforms, would be having each team elect an official sponsor of its games and during broadcasts that company/product is the only corporate logo viewers are allowed to see (like 1950s television). If you don't think Budweiser would pay for this sort of carpet-bomb advertising, you underestimate their advertising budget.

    So as soon as the NFL acquiesces to the demands of the BBC and other publicly funded European television networks, they will have a market there. Until then, it will only be a minnow in a sea of soccer fans.
  5. italian pat patriot

    italian pat patriot In the Starting Line-Up

    #12 Jersey

    anyway an NFL game in Europe will be imho a sold out as fans will join the place coming from everywhere in Europe - i have no doubt

    i agree - for the 'normal' people here the american football is 'a long game'...

    but for people like me it is the n.1 sport
  6. gomezcat

    gomezcat It's SIR Moderator to you Staff Member Supporter

    Great post. The adverts and the stop-start thing ARE a big problem for the game. It is possible to watch two NFL games a week on terrestrial TV, which are the late Sunday night game and the Monday night game. I do get annoyed that Sky get to show (I think) three live games on a Sunday though and we get the scraps.
    One of the things that would really help would be a similar format to the 80s, when a lot of us first started watching the game. There were extended highlights of some key games and a lot of Football 101 presented by people who knew their stuff. I haven't seen the Sky analysts, but they don't have the best rep in the world. I do like Mike Carlson, though. He's a Wesleyan alumnus and is really knowledgeable about the game. However, he is stuck away on Channel 5 (a channel that has less than 100% reception across the UK, for technical reasons) and is on the graveyard slots mentioned previously.
    As for the Rugby thing, Union is the more popular of the two.League is a less popular game played in a narrow corridor of the North, parts of Australia and New Zealand. It is stop-start and I don't enjoy it as much as Union (I say that as a Northerner).
  7. waspie (UK)

    waspie (UK) On the Roster

    I agree with the basic point of the last couple of posts.
    Some general points/clarifications
    Not true. Yes, there are publicly funded TV channels in most European countries, few of those are commercial free. However, without advertising revenue, the public channels are increasingly unable to compete with the commercial networks (predominantly Sky), so increasingly, if you are serious about sport, you need to subscribe to satellite or cable (which still has a far lower uptake in Europe to NA).

    That's the heart of it. Note that football is only ever shown
    on commercial stations; even then they only cut to adverts about 1 in 3 US breaks. This impatience for advertising extends to other programmes - eg a 30 minute TV show will only ever have 1 break, a 60 minute 2 or 3.

    I think, as Pats fans, we're unfair on the Sky presenters, especially Nick Halling. Sure, he makes no secret of the fact that he's a Squealers fan, and hates the Pats, but he does respect them. And I think he's certainly got the best football knowledge of any indigenous presenter. The others on Sky are worst than useless. If Sky could poach Carlson as anchor man with support from Halling, I think we'd have a team I might want to listen to on a Sunday night.

    True (except that the onfield ads in Rugby and Cricket are actually painted on the turf at an angle where they will appear undistorted on TV). Perimeter advertising around the field as well. Although I like the concept of jerseys without sponsors names, in truth every NFL jersey is a Reebok ad. And I find sponsored stadium names more offensive than uniform advertising (especially as I would expect the NFL to have the good sense not to follow the path of the English premiership, where 20% of teams are sponsored by online betting firms). Since franchises would probably not be in a position to negotiate individual sponsors, I'm guessing that the NFL would have to find a single global sponsor. Almost inevitably A/B.

    Still too long. With the exception of cricket (which is more of a minority sport than most Americans would assume - and even there most of the biggest crowds come for the shortened baseball style night games which last about 3 hours) we are used to games that take less than 2 hours. Soccer and Rugby games last 90 & 80 minutes. With time added on for injuries and a 15 minute break at half time, we're used to a 3.00pm kick off, and heading for the exits at 4.40-4.50pm finish. British fans just don't get how a 90 minute game takes less thn 2 hours, whilst a 60 minute game lasts closer to 3.

    Apart from a dodgy choice of soccer and cricket team Gomez, you're a man of taste.
  8. waspie (UK)

    waspie (UK) On the Roster

    And back on topic, although of course I would go, I would be sorely disappointed if, having been promised an NFL game in London, we got stuck with the meaningless mess that is Pro Bowl. You are not going to win over new fans by showing them a meaningless warm down with multiple substitutions (hey, that starting Quarterback is really good...Oh, they substituted him :( )
    Besides, a week in London in February? What sort of reward is that for a Pro Bowl selection?
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2006
  9. PatsRI

    PatsRI Supporter Supporter

    for those on the east coast it's actually closer, that said I'm sure players would rather take their families to Hawaii rather then London (no offense to our brethern in the UK).
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2006
  10. italian pat patriot

    italian pat patriot In the Starting Line-Up

    #12 Jersey

    i will prefere a regular season game but also the Pro Bowl is better then nothing imho

    and it will be a sure sold out with fan coming from everywhere from all european nations imho
  11. gomezcat

    gomezcat It's SIR Moderator to you Staff Member Supporter

    Yeah, I would go, as would a lot of others. I agree that it needs to be something meaningful. I guess the difficulty is in finding two teams whose fans are not going to be disadvantaged too heavily by them having to play a game over here. I guess the Detroit of the early 90s would have been good. Do you remember that clip they used a lot on Channel4 of the solitary Lions fan with a bag over his head, surrounded by empty seats? Hang on, perhaps it was the County Ground- :p
    I agree about London in February for totally different reasons; it's about the one time of the year when we have less tourists. Let's not encourage them! :D
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2006
  12. BruschiOnTap

    BruschiOnTap On the Game Day Roster

    My Quote:
    Most television in Europe is publicly funded and commercial free

    Waspie's Quote:
    Not true. Yes, there are publicly funded TV channels in most European countries, few of those are commercial free. However, without advertising revenue, the public channels are increasingly unable to compete with the commercial networks (predominantly Sky), so increasingly, if you are serious about sport, you need to subscribe to satellite or cable (which still has a far lower uptake in Europe to NA).

    Based on where I've lived and what channels actually present sporting events, I made a sweeping generalization. My apologies. I should have clarified that regardless of whether or not TV is advert-free, the matches nearly always are.

    And thanks for clarifying that rugby on-field advertisement thing! They must really take a lot of time figuring the angle of the paint to make it look so 3-dimensional on television!

    Something that soccer has and NFL doesn't have is universal popularity at the grass roots, schoolyard level. In Europe or China or anywhere else I doubt you'd ever see two kids passing a football, much less playing a pickup game. As such, there is no long-term skill development nor fan base which could lead to professional leagues in other countries. NFL trying to market its own teams abroad as 'the only game in town' makes sense from a branding standpoint (they'd have a total monopoly) but I think a better strategy for the NFL would be to become the world's governing American football body (a la FIFA). Then, you could see other leagues starting in other countries. Just like MLS is a lower quality league than English Premiership, Finland's American football league would be inferior to the American league. But having international play and tournaments (like Champions league and World Cup and even just friendly matches), involving club teams and national teams, would eventually level the talent-field somewhat and would also engage fans from many other countries. I would love to see a 6 Nations of American football played every March/April.

    In many ways, the NFL and its international marketing strategy is symbolic of the insular mind-set of many Americans. It doesn't seem to do much market research on foreign cultures and television programming, just assumes things are the same way everywhere...

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