The NFL’s official UK Twitter account posted a statement Monday afternoon which said the league hopes to return for international games in 2021.
“After considerable analysis, we believe the decision to play all our games domestically this season is the right one for our players, our clubs, and all our fans in the US, Mexico and UK,” said NFL Executive Vice President, Chief Strategy & Growth Officer Christopher Halpin. “We greatly appreciate the support of our governmental and stadium partners in Mexico and the United Kingdom, who all agree with this decision, and we look forward to returning for games in both countries in the 2021 season.”
Last Time the Falcons Played in London
The last time Atlanta played in London. it was an exciting game, but not a pretty ending for the Falcons. The Falcons took on the Detroit Lions. With just eight minutes left in the third quarter, the Falcons led the game 21-0 then let the Lions score 22 points. The Lions won 22-21 after a Matt Ryan pick. Of course, Atlanta crumbled. But, that was under head coach Mike Smith and times have changed since then.
This London trip would have mark Atlanta’s third time playing a regular-season game in another country and their second time in London. It started in 2013 when the Falcons faced the Buffalo Bills in Toronto, Canada. Matt Bryant barely saved the Falcons in overtime by kicking his infamous 36-yard field goal with only three minutes left to play.
The international games are a fun way to bring the game of American football abroad and give those in other countries a chance to watch a live game and let them decide if football or fútbol is better. It’s sad it won’t be happening this year.
Falcons Still Set to Play Broncos
While Covid-19 is ruining plenty of fun, it’s not quite ruining all of the fun.
According to Zach Klein of WSB-TV in Atlanta, the Falcons will still face the Broncos at Mercedes-Benz Stadium this season.
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The Falcons played the Denver Broncos in last year’s Hall of Fame game where the Falcons barely lost 10-14. Denver and Atlanta both finished their 2019 seasons with a record of 7-9.
A Look at 2020 Broncos
The Falcons went heavy on defense in the 2020 NFL Draft while Denver mixed it up but had priorities at wide receiver.
The Broncos drafted two dimes at WR in the first and second rounds of this year’s draft with Jerry Jeudy out of Alabama and KJ Hamler from Penn State. They also bolstered their offensive line in the later rounds.
Here’s what PFF had to say of Denver snagging Jeudy:
“The fact that Denver didn’t have to give up additional draft capital and trade up to land Jerry Jeudy is absurd. The former ‘Bama wide receiver had a consensus rank of No. 8 and ranked fifth on PFF’s big board. He’s a special separator in this class with great YAC ability. He may not look like Julio Jones or Amari Cooper physically, but Jeudy is every bit as good a prospect as those two coming out of Alabama.”