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Why did the NFL choose to play Week 1 in Brazil on a Friday?

by Moxieplay

On Friday, September 6, 2024, the NFL will write history when the Philadelphia Eagles will play their home game in Week 1 of the new season at Brazil’s Arena Corinthians in an unprecedented event in league history.

It will be the first time in 54 years that the NFL will play a game on the Friday night of its first weekend. On the previous occasion, the Los Angeles Rams hosted the St. Louis Cardinals on Friday, September 18, 1970.

On February 5, MARCA reported that NFL commissioner Roger Godell announced that the first international game of the 2024-2025 campaign will be played in Brazil with the Eagles as the home team, against an opponent to be determined.

With this announcement, the NFL will not only have a Week 1 game on international soil for the first time in history, it will also take advantage of some loopholes that prevent it from having games on Fridays and Saturdays.

Why will the NFL play on Friday in Week 1?

The Sports Broadcasting Act that has governed U.S. television since 1961 states that the NFL cannot schedule any games on Fridays or Saturdays from the second weekend in September through the second weekend in December.

During that period, college soccer campaigns are underway, as well as high school seasons, and to boost their support, Fridays and Saturdays are dedicated to student leagues.

The NFL designs its schedule to start on the Thursday after Labor Day in the United States, which in 2024 will be Monday, September 2, 2024, so the kickoff will be on September 5, and one day later the Eagles will make their home debut in the campaign.

That September 6 will be the first weekend of the month, so this programming does not violate the sports broadcasting law.

And what better opportunity to expand the league’s markets than by kicking off the season’s activity with the first of four games outside the United States, in a venue that will host the NFL for the first time in regular season history, such as Brazil.

This is the NFL’s international activity in 2024

Five regular-season games will be played internationally in 2024.

London’s Tottenham Hotspur Stadium will host games between the Chicago Bears and Minnesota Vikings. The Jacksonville Jaguars will return to Wembley Stadium as part of their multi-year commitment to play in Britain.

The Carolina Panthers will play in Munich, Germany, at the Allianz Arena.

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