Could Toronto Get the Nod as Part of NFL Expansion?

Though Canada has its own football league, the CFL, there have always been ongoing discussions about the possibility of a Canadian team being added to the NFL just south of the border. It appears talk of such an addition is now becoming far more realistic.


The NFL is looking to expand, and the current roster of 32 teams could be increased to 36 or even 40 teams as they look to push on with that expansion. This has led to speculation that as well as more teams in the US being added, as well as even having a franchise in London, now Toronto is being touted as a possible option.


The NFL is as competitive as ever right now, with a number of teams being genuine title challengers, and you can see where each team stands in terms of the sports betting odds at One wonders if the addition of four or even eight more teams would dilute the product rather than offering it more scope.


There’s definitely an appetite for the NFL in Canada; indeed, regular-season games took place at the Rogers Centre every year from 2008 to 2013, with the Buffalo Bills taking on a host of sides (coincidentally only managing to win one of the six games that took place).


Up until now, the idea of a team being in Toronto was mainly in relation to the possibility of a franchise moving to the city rather than a new spot being made available. The issue of cost has also long been a factor, with the apparent associated costs of bringing a team to Toronto being as much as $1 billion.


Some in Canada are worried that an NFL team in the country could negatively affect the CFL, but those concerns are not shared by some, with NFL’s resident data analytics expert Cynthia Frelund feeling differently;


“I’m a big fan of [the CFL], and I think it’s good to have the CFL for a number of reasons, but not the least of which is because it’s pretty pure,”


“These guys want to be there because they’re having fun, and they’re not breaking the bank there. Everybody likes to see someone just enjoying themselves at a game, so I don’t want it to die either.”


“I think two things can co-exist together. I think we’ve seen that in other areas,”


“The hard part about a non-NFL entity for football is we’ve seen two examples of large-scale failures, the XFL twice and the Alliance of American football once. People are down on if it can exist or if there’s enough potential for both, and I think that both can exist, and I think they should.”


One imagines that any moves into Canadian territory would start with an international series, much like the one that has been hosted in London from 2007 until now, with a great deal of success. Then when the NFL seeks to make the expansion to new franchises, it seems very likely a Canadian team will be brought into the mix. What previously felt like an issue that may or may not happen now seems like more a matter of not if, but when.


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