Earlier this week, the NFL announced what the five International Series games will be in the NFL next season and after this year, every team in the NFL will have played at least one regular season game outside of the United States.
The only team that had not yet played a game outside of the US, the Green Bay Packers, were confirmed as being one of the teams to play this year a while back and now we know the make-up of all five games, three in England and one each in Germany and Mexico.
There will be three games played in England this year once again, two at Tottenham
Hotspurs stadium, plus one at Wembley Stadium. All three games taking place in October (2nd, 9th and 30th).
First up, there is an intriguing all-NFC clash in prospect for the 2nd October at the Tottenham stadium as the New Orleans Saints take on the Minnesota Vikings.
Both teams very much rebuilding after the draft and seeking to establish a rivalry with one of the top teams in the division (The Bucs for the Saints and the Packers for the Vikings).
The Saints are yet to be beaten in an international series game, winning both of the two they have contested so far against the Chargers and the Dolphins in 2006 and 2017.
A week later, it will be the turn of two more NFC teams to play at the same stadium as the Green Bay Packers play their first international series game against the New York Giants.
The Giants have won both their previous international series game in London, defeating the Dolphins and Rams in their games in 2007 and 2016.
Lastly, on October 30th, the action will move to Wembley Stadium where the perennial London hosts, the Jacksonville Jaguars will continue their long-standing tradition of playing a game in the capital when they face Russell Wilson and the Denver Broncos.
The Jags are 4-4 in their 8 games in London and have played one game in the city every season since 2013, apart from 2020 due to COVID.
They will continue to play one home game in London at least until the 2025 season.
Denver has only played once outside of the US, losing to San Francisco in 2010 at Wembley.
The very first NFL regular season game to be played in Germany will take place at 9.30am
TAMPA, FLORIDA – DECEMBER 12: Head coach Bruce Arians of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers reacts against the Buffalo Bills during the second half at Raymond James Stadium on December 12, 2021 in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
ET on November 13 at the Allianz Arena, the spectacular home of soccer giants Bayern Munich.
The first of four games to be played in Germany over the next four years, two in Munich and two in Frankfurt, will see Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers facing off against the Seattle Seahawks in what will be an intriguing all NFC clash.
A year after their Super Bowl victory, the Bucs fell short in the NFC Conference Championship game, losing narrowly to the Los Angeles Rams but with Tom Brady retiring, but then coming back for at least one more year, they are one of the much-fancied teams to do well this year with the bookmakers.
The Bucs have played three times outside of the United States (all in London) and are yet to record a win, losing 35-7 to the Patriots in 2009, 24-18 to the Bears in 2011 and 37-26 to the Panthers in 2019.
In contrast, the Seahawks have twice played abroad, beating the Bills in Toronto back in 2012 and then also beating the Oakland Raiders in London in 2018.
The fourth game to be played in Mexico will take place at the Azteca Stadium in Mexico City
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS – DECEMBER 05: DeAndre Hopkins #10 of the Arizona Cardinals celebrates with fans after Arizona defeated the Chicago Bears 33-22 at Soldier Field on December 05, 2021 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)
on Monday November 21st with the Arizona Cardinals facing off against NFC West divisional rivals the San Francisco 49ers.
Arizona have lost their only International series game (33-0 against the Rams) whereas the 49ers have won both their previous games in the series, defeating Denver in 2010 and Jacksonville in 2013.
This game will come after DeAndre Hopkins will have served his six game suspension for using performance enhancing drugs, so the wide receiver may well be able to line up alongside Marquise Brown, who the Cardinals swapped for their first round pick in the draft this year.
It will be interesting to see whether the 49ers will still have Deebo Samuel in their team after the talented hybrid WR/RB requested a trade from the 49ers this summer. A move that has yet to materialise.
With the full set of NFL fixtures set to be announced shortly. These five international games at least gives fans a glimpse as to which of their teams will be heading abroad over the course of the season to further raise the profile of the NFL around the world.