Those chosen will be assigned to NFL teams in 2022
The NFL will evaluate the talent of 50 players from 15 countries in London next month.
Searching for talent abroad is similar to the tests the NFL normally does in Indianapolis. The idea is to detect players with the potential to play in the league. The test in London will take place at the Tottenham Hotspur football club stadium on October 12.
Players from Great Britain, Germany, Belgium, Australia, New Zealand, France, Nigeria, Austria, Slovakia, Italy, Switzerland, Japan, Finland, Sweden, and Hungary have been invited.
There will be a similar test in Mexico in the same month of October for athletes who were unable to travel to London due to restrictions associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.
File photo showing quarterback Aaron Rodgers (R) and Green Bay Packers running back Aaron Jones (L), who combined to score three touchdowns in their team’s 35-17 win over the Detroit Lions. EFE / Tannen Maury
“Through these trials, we hope to discover new talent, promote the sport globally and offer participants the opportunity to compete at the highest level,” said Damiani Leech, director of the NFL’s international program.
The athletes will be judged based on the NFL’s International Player Pathway program, from which figures such as Jakob Johnson (New England), Efe Obada (Buffalo), and Chilean tight end Sammis Reyes (Washington) emerged.
Players who meet certain requirements and show potential to play in the NFL will be invited to train in the United States for three months. Those chosen will be assigned to NFL teams in 2022.
The NFL has already conducted similar tests in Australia in 2018 and in Germany in 2019.
Mexico City will have NFL games in 2022 and 2023
NFL Mexico fans (Photo: Cuartoscuro)
Mexico City is guaranteed the return of NFL regular-season games for 2022 and 2023, the director of the league’s office in the country, Arturo Olivé, reported on Wednesday.
The NFL had planned trips south of its border to play games on its regular schedule both last year and this year, but the pandemic did not allow them to take place.
“We are certain of having a game next year, we are already thinking of having a game in 2022, hoping that the conditions of the pandemic allow it, as was not the case in 2020 and 2021,” Olivé said at a virtual press conference. “We are confident that we will be able to return to Mexico with a game in November.”
Mexico City had hosted games in 2016, 2017, and 2019 seasons. A game scheduled for 2018 between the Kansas City Chiefs and the Los Angeles Rams was canceled due to poor grass conditions at Azteca Stadium.
The NFL and the Televisa network, the largest generator of Spanish-language content in the world and owner of the Azteca stadium, had a signed agreement to hold matches in Mexico until 2021.
NFL Mexico fans (Photo: Cuartoscuro)
“It is not compensation, it is a transfer of commitments that could not be carried out, so what we did was go through those dates for 2022 and 2023,” said the leader. “I do not want to generate uncertainty, everything is in place and working, now we will pause for the start of the season, but then we return to the issues internally for the planning process of the game.”
The meetings in Mexico will continue despite the fact that starting in 2018 there was a change in the federal government and the administration now headed by President Andrés Manuel López Obrador decided to stop investing in international sporting events.
With his predecessor, Enrique Peña Nieto, the federal government, through the Ministry of Tourism, provided resources for the holding of events such as Formula 1, NFL, NBA games and the Mexican Tennis Open.
Each NFL game held in Mexico in the past administration had a cost of $ 14.5 million. These resources will no longer be made available.
Each NFL game held in Mexico in the past administration had a cost of $ 14.5 million. These resources will no longer be made available. (Photo: USA TODAY Sports)
“We solve the economic part internally, but in terms of logistics and events around the game, the support is still there from the federal government and Mexico City and collaboration is close,” said Olivé.
Mexico is considered the country outside the United States with the largest number of NFL fans. According to the latest study carried out by the league, released by Olivé, some 48 million fans follow this sport in the country.
“The idea is to continue with games in Mexico in the future, both in the medium and long term, but now the focus is on the game of 2022″, there is still no date and there are no teams, but we are working on the part that does not touch after backstage for when the league decides to announce it, “he concluded.