The second year of the NFL’s latest international boondoggle has been announced: it is a subdivision of slightly larger parts of the world into territories assigned to groups of teams. There isn’t much new here for the Panthers, as their stake in Germany was part of last year’s program and has not changed this year. They have also not expanded their access to include additional international markets.. That stake is set to include the team’s first international game in 2024, reportedly in Munich.
Announcing the expansion of the NFL’s Global Markets Program!— NFL (@NFL) May 23, 2023
21 teams across 14 markets now have access to grow their fan bases around the world in long-term strategic effort to enable clubs to build their brands globally. pic.twitter.com/8GNbM0Ph7B
The Global Markets program is designed to give teams specific and semi-exclusive access to marketing in these regions in an effort to grow their fanbases.
The Panthers will share Germany with the Atlanta Falcons, the Kansas City Chiefs, the New England Patriots, and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Poor Germany, getting most of the NFC South.
The rest of the markets are Europe heavy, with toes being dipped into Africa, Asia, and the Pacific.
Canada has been informed they are rooting for two teams that are not the Buffalo Bills. Apparently Toronto has been annexed by the Empire State already.
Mexico City, already a site of international games, has been asked to share rooting duties for the Arizona Cardinals, the Dallas Cowboys, the Denver Broncos, the Houston Texans, the Chiefs, the Las Vegas Raiders, the Los Angeles Rams, the Pittsburgh Steelers, and the San Francisco 49ers.
That seems like a lot. It’s a city of 8.8M people, sure. It’s also is a city with little reason to care about one team, let alone nine.
There is plenty more of this silliness to unpack, but instead of poking a dead jelly fish, we’ll just point out that the our new rivals in Germany—the Chiefs, Patriots, and Bucs—have each spread into Austria as well. The Falcons are stuck with us in just Germany. Also, boy howdy, does talking about territorial expansion across Western Europe get awkward real fast.