Ever since the NFL traveled across the pond to play a game at Wembley Stadium, there has been talk of an NFL franchise moving to London. It often seems unlikely, given the travel, time difference and cost it would take to pull it off. As for the Super Bowl, well, that costs even more and would be taking America's past time away from America. Doesn't quite seem right.
Though this process is still in the fantasy phase, it may soon become a reality. Wembley's managing director, Roger Maslin, spoke with SI about the possibilities, leaving no doubt as to his intentions.
"Absolutely we can," Maslin said in an executive box overlooking the Wembley pitch. "I am absolutely confident if (NFL Commissioner) Roger Goodell wanted to have a franchise here we could absolutely deliver on it."
England now boasts about 2 million fans, approximately half of what they estimate they'll need to sustain an NFL franchise. They've built that base in just four years and hope to double it in the next four. Given our technological advances during that time, it's not unreasonable to expect travel costs to decrease significantly, particularly if things like the transportation tube actually take shape.
Franchise or not, Wembley made sure their place at the front of the line for an international Super Bowl was firmly in place.
"They are a very progressive organization so long, long, long term they might consider (a Super Bowl in London), but it's a hell of a call," Maslin said of the NFL. "Absolutely ... if they bring it anywhere in the world we want it here at Wembley."