Last week NFL commissioner, Roger Goodell, met with Peter King of Sports Illustrated and spoke about the future of the International game. It does look like 2012 will see a second regular season game in Europe, potential venues include Croke Park in Dublin and the Millenium Stadium in Cardiff. Here’s the transcript of the interview when Goodell shares his thoughts on the International Series.
On the International game in London and if it is experimental:
I don’t know if I can answer that Peter, but I can tell you I don’t look at it as experimental. I look at it to developmental. If we continue to take the steps that we’ve taken to develop our game and the fans continue to react the way they’ve react and our partners, not only sponsors and licensees but our television partners. The game is treated much more seriously in the United Kingdom as an example by playing our regular season series over there. It’s clear that there’s support for more than one game which the ownership has passed a resolution to allow us to do that. We may do that as early as 2012. We are sort of contemplating that in the context of they are also hosting the Olympics next summer.
On if there will be two games in England in 2012:
Not in England in 2012. We may, because of the Olympics, look at 2013.
On playing in England and somewhere else in 2012:
Possibly. It may be someplace else in the UK, not necessarily in London.
On Rooney wanting to bring the Steelers to Dublin for a game:
Sure. We had a game in the 90’s, Chicago and Pittsburgh played. It was a great success.
On a regular season game in Dublin:
We’ve not done that but I think that it could be a success. He has expressed an interest in doing that.
2013 could be a more realistic target for an Irish regular season game, as Croke Park officials only met with the NFL for the first time on December 2nd. Another hurdle seems to be the Steelers contract with Pittsburgh to host each home game in Heinz Field, so Dan Rooney must convince another team to give up their home game if the Steelers were to play abroad.