Troy Vincent Says NFL's 'Ultimate Goal' Is to Make Flag Football an Olympic Sport

Adam WellsJuly 7, 2022

Paul Harding/Getty Images for Leaders

With the NFL adding more international games to its regular-season schedule, the next step for the league to grow the sport around the world involves the Olympics.

Troy Vincent, Executive Vice President of Football Operations for the NFL, told the Associated Press (h/t Pro Football Talk's Michael David Smith) the league's "ultimate goal" is to make flag football an Olympic sport.

International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach said in 2015 that football didn't have enough broad appeal to warrant consideration for the Olympics.

Bach specifically said Olympic sports "must have a broad international representation" and that football is "a very American sport."

In the years since Bach made those comments, the league has continued to make inroads internationally to broaden its appeal.

There will be five international games during the 2022 season, including the first-ever regular-season matchup in Germany between the Seattle Seahawks and Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Nov. 13.

Other games being played outside of the United States include the Minnesota Vikings vs. New Orleans Saints, New York Giants vs. Green Bay Packers, Denver Broncos vs. Jacksonville Jaguars (all in London) and San Francisco 49ers vs. Arizona Cardinals (Mexico City).

This comes on the heels of the NFL announcing in December that 18 of its teams were awarded international marketing rights in eight different countries as part of the International Home Marketing Areas program initiative.

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Christopher Halpin, NFL Executive Vice President, Chief Strategy & Growth Officer, said in a statement when the agreements were announced that the initiative "enables NFL teams to develop meaningful, direct relationships with NFL fans abroad, driving fan growth and avidity globally."

NFL International CEO Damani Leech told CNBC's Jabari Young in April that "more countries will invest" in football if it becomes an Olympic sport.

Vincent said the league is looking at the 2028 Summer Games in Los Angeles as an opportunity to get American football a spot on the world stage.

He also noted flag football makes it easier to export the game to countries around the world.


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