In 2005 the total attendance at the thirty games was 568,935, and the average attendance of 18,965 was the highest since 1992. On the other hand, TV contracts were canceled as a result of teams moving out of the countries they were based upon, such as the NFLEL deal with satellite TV platform Digital+ in Spain after the demise of the Barcelona Dragons. Player salaries had gone down since the start of the WLAF, when the average was $40,000. By 2005, the salary in NFL Europe was $18,500 for the quarterback, $13,500 for every other position.
In the late 1990s two future NFL star quarterbacks were active in the European league. Kurt Warner played for the Amsterdam Admirals in 1998, with Jake Delhomme as his backup quarterback. Delhomme played at the Frankfurt Galaxy the following season in an unorthodox two-quarterback system with Pat Barnes, with the Galaxy winning the 1999 World Bowl.
Brecks owner, Aaron Hertzman, sent a $25 franchise fee to the NFL on February 21, 1921. The Official NFL Encyclopedia confirms that although officials from Louisville failed to attend the April 1921 league meeting, the NFL did receive a letter requesting a franchise from the Breckenridges. As a result, Hertzman beat out many of the other professional and semi-pro football teams in the Louisville area. In 1920, there were at least nine independent teams in the area, including the Brecks and the Evansville Ex-Collegians.
In 2006, the league's schedule opened and closed one month earlier than normal because of the 2006 FIFA World Cup, which was played at four of the five German stadiums that hosted NFL Europa teams. Only the LTU Arena in Düsseldorf was not chosen to host World Cup matches, and that stadium hosted the World Bowl that year.
The NFL Europe era was beset by instability, but NFL Europe president Oliver Luck was "well past being concerned with the short term" and claimed attendances were less vital to revenues than before 1998. However, with attendances slumping to an average of 5,944 the England Monarchs were shut down after the 1998 season, being replaced by the Berlin Thunder. In 2002, the Barcelona Dragons became an official section of FC Barcelona, adopting the name FC Barcelona Dragons. However, after only one year Barcelona dropped its sponsorship. With the team struggling financially and generating little fan support, the NFL was not interested in keeping the franchise alive, and replaced it with the Cologne Centurions for the 2004 season.
The Brecks were one of eight teams that joined the NFL (then called the American Professional Football Association) in 1921. Carr had intended to use the Brecks a traveling team to fill in open dates in the schedules of the more "established" teams. However, the Brecks did not operate like one. The team played only two league games in 1921, one at home and one on the road, hardly justify the Brecks as a road team. But they were all Louisville born or raised in Louisville. And unlike most road teams, the Brecks' two league games were not with established teams but with the struggling Evansville Crimson Giants and the Columbus Panhandles, another road team.
During the lockout, four NFL coaches were fined by the league for disorderly conduct towards the replacement officials. On September 24, the league fined Denver Broncos coaches John Fox and Jack Del Rio for insulting the replacement officials, while fining New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick for pulling a replacement official's arm and Washington Redskins assistant coach Kyle Shanahan for berating officials on September 26.
The All-Americans had success during its first couple of APFA seasons, posting a 9–1–1 regular season record in 1920, becoming the first professional NFL team to win by margins of 20 or more points in each of its first four games, an asterisked record which was not tied until the 2007 New England Patriots' offense duplicated the feat; the asterisk is because, in the early NFL, the All-Americans played several non-league opponents.
Starting in 1998, the league was known as NFL Europe. Qualification for the World Bowl championship game also changed. The two teams with the best overall record after 10 games competed in the World Bowl, to be hosted at a pre-determined site. A team could no longer secure a World Bowl berth midway through the season. The change was largely attributed to the play of the eventual 1997 World Bowl champions, the Barcelona Dragons, who secured a World Bowl berth with a 4–1 first-half record and proceeded to rest players and play what some argued was low-intensity football in the second half, finishing with just a 5–5 record and third place overall in the league's standings.
NFL President Joseph Carr liked the idea of having professional football in cities with strong baseball traditions. This may answer why he granted Hertzman and the Brecks their franchise in 1921. Unlike today, the announcement of Louisville being granted an NFL franchise, was widely ignored by the Louisville press. However, in 1920, only a little attention had been paid the league.
During the preseason, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell stated that he believed that the replacement officials would "do a credible job", while both Dallas Cowboys' owner Jerry Jones and Houston Texans' owner Bob McNair each said that they did not notice any difference in the officiating by the replacement officials. The league has said it hopes to reduce these mistakes by having an alternate official on the sidelines at each game, who would be in constant communication with league supervisors, similar to what is normally done during playoff games.
In early 2013, EA Sports announced that the next installment of the Madden series was released on August 27, 2013. As this installment is the 25th anniversary of the series, the game is called Madden NFL 25, instead of Madden NFL 14 with the year like the previous versions. The cover vote consisted of two brackets containing past players ("Old School") and active players ("New School").
The third lab is located at the NFL Films current location in the Bishop's Gate industrial park in Mt. Laurel behind a two-story glass wall. This allows visitors to the offices to see the inner workings of the entire processing lab. Those on morning tours can often watch as employees develop film for use in weekly shows.
Madden NFL 2001 featured a segment called "Great Games" where one would be put in a situation where they control one team and would have to win the game with a set amount of time. If the player wins, they unlock either a new team or a stadium. Overall, there were more than 60 teams and over 80 stadiums in Madden NFL 2001. Tennessee Titans running back Eddie George is the cover athlete.
Prior to the 2012 season, the NFL Network aired live primetime games on Thursdays beginning in mid-November. Starting with the 2012 season, the network began televising one live Thursday night game each week from Weeks 2 through 15 (excluding Thanksgiving Day), as well as one live Saturday night game during Week 16. As a result of the addition of these extra games, every NFL team now appears in at least one timeslot-exclusive nationally televised game (either a Thursday, Sunday, or Monday Night contest, a Thanksgiving game, or a 9:30 a.m ET London game). As with the games broadcast by ESPN's Monday Night Football, the NFL Network telecasts are also aired on a designated broadcast television station in the primary markets of the participating teams, although prior to the suspension of blackout rules in 2015 stations in the home team's market only carried it if the televised game sold out all remaining available tickets 72 hours prior to the game's start time.
"Old School" player and Pro Football Hall of Famer Barry Sanders was chosen as the cover athlete for Madden NFL 25 on the April 24, 2013, episode of ESPN's SportsNation. The "New School" finalist was Adrian Peterson.
Madden NFL 09 was released on August 12, 2008. Citing business concerns, EA chose not to release it on the PC platform. The game features quarterback Brett Favre on the front cover, initially in a Green Bay Packers uniform, but also with a downloadable cover featuring Favre in a New York Jets uniform. Favre had retired before the start of the season as a member of the Packers, but came out of retirement late in the summer and was traded to the Jets. Madden NFL 09 was the first of the series to offer online, league game play, allowing up to 32 players to compete in an online, simulated NFL season. EA Sports Senior Producer Phil Frazier, up to 32 players were able to participate in competitive games, the NFL Draft and conduct trades between their teams. The game was also the first of the series to incorporate a Madden IQ. The Madden IQ is used to automatically gauge your skills through a series of mini-games consisting of run offense, pass offense, run defense, and pass defense. At the end of each of the drills, the player receives a score ranging from rookie to all-Madden. The final Madden IQ is a mixture of those scores which is used to control the game's difficulty.
NFL Films Lab is also in charge of the archiving and maintenance of the vault. Containing over 100 continuous years of football footage, the vault houses all of the film that NFL Films has shot or acquired from other sources in its entire history. Currently, NFL Films is in the process of re-transferring all of its footage into high-definition format, although the original film will always be kept as it's likely to outlast tape medium in terms of degradation.
When Thursday Night Football premiered, veteran television announcer Bryant Gumbel served as play-by-play announcer, with former Fox and current NBC analyst Cris Collinsworth serving as color commentator for the broadcasts. Collinsworth won the Sports Emmy for best game analyst for his work on the NFL Network telecasts. Dick Vermeil replaced Collinsworth for two games in 2006; Marshall Faulk and Deion Sanders replaced Collinsworth when needed in 2007.
Also, starting with Madden NFL 2004, EA Sports created the new Playmaker tool, using the right analog joystick found on each of the adjustments previously unavailable in prior installments of the franchise. One such adjustment includes the ability to switch which direction a running play was going without changing the formation. Prior to the Playmaker tool, the Player could only call one of four available "hot routes." With Playmaker and the use of the right thumb stick, the player is given 4 additional Hot Route options. When the quarterback has the ball the Playmaker Tool can be used to make receivers alter their routes mid-play. When running the ball on offense, the runner can control the direction in which the blocker is going. Defensive alignment adjustments, however, were not available leading to obvious imbalance in favor of the Offensive player. Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael Vick is the cover athlete.