NFL May Put Some Regular Season Games In Canada

The NFL has a built in base in Toronto and Vancouver.

As of today, the National Football League cannot schedule any games, pre or regular season contests, in Canada. The American-Canadian border remains shut because of COVID-19 and neither the Toronto Blue Jays nor the Toronto Raptors can play baseball or basketball games in Ontario. Major League Soccer’s Canadian teams are now temporarily based in the U. S. If a National Hockey League player is traded from an American team to a Canadian squad, he has to quarantine for a week. The NHL has its seven Canadian teams playing in Canada exclusively but the playoffs are coming soon and some high-level decisions have to be made in Ottawa to allow an American-based team to play in the country.  Earlier this week, it was announced that Ontario has more COVID-19 patients in ICU than ever before. Canada is also limiting the AztraZeneca-Oxford COVID-19 vaccine to people over the age of 55 because of a blood clot issue in younger people. Canada has had a slow rollout of other COVID-19 vaccines.

But all of that is not deterring the NFL as the league is eyeing Canadian cities as possible sites for regular season games. The league did experiment years ago by shifting some Buffalo Bills home regular season games to Toronto which is about an hour and a half away from Buffalo. Southern Ontario is Bills territory. Vancouver and British Columbia would be considered Seattle Seahawks territory. Vancouver would be in the running for games as would Montreal and possibly Edmonton. All of those cities host Canadian Football League franchises. The NFL has been playing annual regular-season games for more than a decade in London, England and has staged some games in Mexico City. The NFL wants global money.

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Toronto Raptors guard Kyle Lowry (7) talks to Houston Rockets guard John Wall (1) after an NBA basketball game Friday, Feb. 26, 2021, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O’Meara)