NFL Rumors: League Pushing To Expand the Regular Season to 18 Weeks

After years of teasing the idea, the NFL might finally be looking to get the conversation going again to increase their yearly schedule to 18 games.

The long-awaited goal by the NFL might finally be coming to fruition … eventually.

After years of looking for an opening to expand to an 18-game schedule, the NFL is reportedly losing hope in adding an additional game to the current schedule, as was first reported by Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk.

The league altered the previous 16-game schedule to 17 in March 2021 and has been looking to increase to 18 over the last decade.

Mike Florio Details Reason Behind 18-Game Proposal

Pro Football Talk’s long-standing host made it clear that the league is not close to adding an 18th game to its current slate, but it “hasn’t been abandoned, health and safety concerns be damned.”

Florio later said the conversation was teased a bit when Cleveland Browns general manager Andrew Berry proposed moving the trade deadline 14 days later in the season, and further conversations around the league felt that the next collective bargaining agreement could have an 18th game added.

“That happened on Tuesday,” Florio said. “In talking to folks after that, I mentioned Berry’s plan with the anticipation of another game. The reaction was, basically, ‘Yeah. That’s coming.'”

Rumors of an 18-game season have been consistently in the works for years during union talks with the NFL Players Association vehemently against the rule change while keeping preseason games on the docket.

To Florio, the new schedule would cut the preseason games to just two with the push to an 18-game slate.

The reason for the NFL to increase the number of weeks they play is quite simple: No league in North America has been able to duplicate the success they have seen in revenue in recent years. With a push to increase the quantity of international games, the league has never been as popular as it is right now, or made as much money.

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With the increase in revenue, the league could go to the NFLPA with a further increase in revenue share to entice the union to agree to the increased schedule. That, along with further retirement benefits, has long been a key demand from the players.

The current CBA expires in March 2030, so there is plenty of time for the league to come up with a proposal that players will be interested in entertaining. If fans were just getting accustomed to the 17-game schedule, though, they may need to add another week to their viewing experience in the coming years.

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