NFL's St. Louis Rams to play 3 home games in London, England
St. Louis Rams quarterback Sam Bradford passes against the Seattle Seahawks in November.
January 20th, 2012
11:54 AM ET

NFL's St. Louis Rams to play 3 home games in London, England

The NFL's St. Louis Rams will have a second home in London, England, for the next three seasons.

The league announced Friday that the Rams will play regular-season home games in the British capital in 2012, 2013 and 2014. Their first opponent will be the New England Patriots on October 28.

“This is a tremendous honor for our franchise, the city of St. Louis and our fans throughout the world,” Rams owner E. Stanley Kroenke said in a statement.

We’ve seen first-hand the increased popularity of the NFL not only in London but throughout Europe. To play a role in that growth over the next three years will be incredible and is a testament to the many good things happening not only in the NFL but also in the St. Louis Rams organization,” said Kroenke, who is also a director of London's Arsenal Football Club.

The Rams are the first NFL franchise to schedule regular-season games in Britain under a plan approved by league owners on October 11. That plan allows the scheduling of five regular season NFL games in Britain in each of the next five years. Clubs were asked to volunteer switching their home games to the overseas venue, and the Rams plans were accepted, the league statement said. The New England-St. Louis game will be the only NFL game in Britain next season.

The NFL has played regular-season games in Britain since 2007.  The Patriots were participants in the 2009 game, beating the "home team" Tampa Bay Buccaneers 35-7. The Bucs also hosted last season's Wembley game, falling 24-18 to the Chicago Bears. The Denver Broncos, San Francisco 49ers, San Diego Chargers, New Orleans Saints, Miami Dolphins and New York Giants have also played in Britain.

Patriots chairman and CEO Robert Kraft said his team was eager to return to Britain.

"The United Kingdom is home to some of our most passionate Patriots fans, including the UKPatriots, who are among our most active fan clubs overall, not just overseas.  We look forward to another memorable experience," Kraft said in a statement.

The NFL says it has a fan base of 11 million in the United Kingdom, with more than 2 million of those what it considers "avid fans," according to the league statement.

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Filed under: Football • Pro football • Sports • United Kingdom
soundoff (11 Responses)
  1. hawkeye

    As bad as the rams are.Its probably be a good idea that they get away from home as much as they can.Also I wonder if they will have to sell that game out to be on tv

    January 20, 2012 at 12:16 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  2. Scottish Mama

    It was hard to sit through the games for the last 5 years in our seats. Kronke has 2 years to decide if he will stay in St. Louis and when asked he will not answer any questions. He acquired the rams over a business man in Illinios by putting the other team he owned in a family members name.(Because NFL rules prohibit owning 2 teams) He married into the Walmart family. I guess we pay less to see them loose. I think last year was the last year many will buy PSL's seats. I think he is laying ground work to a franchise that he plans to start in London. Why stay in the states when you when you have the money to take it out of town. Sort of what Walmart does best, employees illegal aliens, does not pay women the same as male counterparts, and buys there products in china.(Where they get cheap labor and exploit the workers there)

    January 20, 2012 at 12:37 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  3. Galaxy

    What "increased popularity"? The NFL Europe was very popular over here but the commish decided that it wasn't worth it to keep coming here every year so the league was disbanded (with no notice). Now that the AFL is talking about expanding the league over here, they want to start bringing the teams over here on a regular basis. Those in England may want to see the teams play, but the rest of us in other countries won't bother to travel there.

    January 20, 2012 at 4:51 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  4. Weezle

    Who cares as long as they dont come back to L.A.

    January 20, 2012 at 8:31 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  5. Andy

    A fan base of 11 million out of a total population of 62 million or so get real...... if the NFL has a fan base of 11 million the EPL must have a fan base of 60 million.

    January 20, 2012 at 11:43 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Andi

      sounds about right...

      January 21, 2012 at 1:32 am | Report abuse |
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    • Galaxy

      No spell check, huh? ;)

      January 21, 2012 at 9:32 am | Report abuse |
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