Thursday, October 11, 2007


A little background on the Globe & Mail story about the Toronto Argonauts owners wanting to talk partnership with the NFL: There's less than tremendous optimism about the Minnesota Vikings getting their stadium financing proposal through the state legislature. When the owner is already saying a new stadium is a quality-of-life issue instead of a revenue issue, he's playing a bit desperate. The Buffalo Bills are far from the only shaky franchise.

The stance here on Toronto and the NFL remains the same: If it happens, so be it, but it cannot come at the expense of the CFL... it would be a sad commentary if the people who have backed the league for generations get kicked aside in favour of the league made for casual fans.

(UPDATE: Toronto will get the NFL around the same time it gets the Olympics; oh, and by the way, it is going to cost London almost $1 billion to just to build the stadium for the 2012 Summer Games.)

Argos owners kick NFL into play (Stephen Brunt and David Naylor,
Wilf ready to talk stadium plans with legislators in '08 (Kevin Seifert, Minneapolis Star-Tribune)
What's football without the ironic detachment? (Sept. 12, 2006)


Pete Toms said...

Rightly or wrongly the Twins beat the Vikes on the race to the public trough for stadium money. Didn't I also read recently that the Vikes aren't selling out either? At least not on a consistent basis?

Brunt & Naylor are correct in that Jacksonville is struggling as well. The Jags tarped over ( I know tarp isn't a verb ) some sections last season in order to get around local blackouts for non sellouts and sadly I also agree that the Saints would not be in New Orleans if not for Katrina.

As for the CFL, Bobbby Ackles has been making noise in the Cdn press recently expressing concerns about the future of the CFL if the NFL comes to Toronto. I don't think the Argos owners are big enough players to be granted entry into the private club that is NFL ownership. If and when it happens ( I think it will ) it's gonna be the heavyweights Rogers, Tannenbaum, MLSE etc. The stadium will be built without public money, the Bay Streeters will be so horny for the NFL ( who desires World Class more than TO? ) that money will fall from the sky.

Will it kill the CFL? I hope not, I enjoyed the CFL here in Ottawa off and on ( only off when we were/ are without a team ) for the past 27 years. Maybe it will survive because REAL Canadians ( those outside of the GTA ) very much enjoy the CFL, excellent TV ratings outside th GTA - even the Quebecois have learned to like it, Alouttes games on RDS do great - and the Grey Cup remains a huge TV event in our country even in this age of audience fragmentation.

Politically and socially it's not 1974 and neither Tories or Liberals will want to fight against it because it will be overwhelmingly popular in the vote rich GTA. In fact the GTA can prove once and for all that they're too "World Class" for the quaint ol CFL.

Anonymous said...

Put an NFL team in Toronto and move the Argos to Ottawa.

sager said...

1) Ultimately, Toronto as a whole probably needs to realize it's not New York City; it's Frankfurt, or maybe Seattle or San Diego... the NFL is probably not coming, but it's a nice topic to run into the ground since it stirs strong emotions... the self-loathing Canadians who want to get rid of the CFL and as Pete says, the more honest Canadians who appreciate What Is (the CFL), not What Should Be (the NFL in T-Dot).

2) Argos in Ottawa? Now there's a plan. Ultimately, I would think there are enough Argos loyalists the franchise would survive... Hamilton, though...

3) Toronto probably gets the NFL the same time it gets the Summer Olympics and eliminates traffic congestion. Just sayin'.