The NFL has grown enormously in Mexico, becoming one of the most followed sports and has an important tradition within the university sector.
For this reason, it was not surprising that for quite some time, since the late 70s, one of the most important competitions in world sport will be set in our lands to bring matches, which began as preseason and are currently regular season.
Officially, the NFL arrived in Mexico in 1978, when they played the first preseason game, where the Philadelphia Eagles beat the New Orleans Saints 14-7.
From that year until 2001, six more games were played (for a total of seven): Oilers 6-0 Cowboys (1994), Chiefs 32-6 Cowboys (1996), Dolphins 38-19 Broncos (1997), Patriots 21-3 Cowboys (1998), Colts 24-23 Steelers (2000) and Cowboys 21-6 Raiders (2001), which were an important piece in the growth of this discipline in Mexico.
In the same way, the fan of our country took a singular appreciation and affection for teams like the Dallas Cowboys and San Francisco 49ers, which had their best times, in addition to the fact that the team of the “Lone Star” visited the Azteca Stadium on four occasions in the 90s.
The season is coming
With American football already an established sport in the country and the NFL as one of the most watched leagues, thanks to a combination of more free-to-air television channels broadcasting matches, the arrival of pay television, and some Aztec players that left the country high.
As a result of this, the NFL took the next step, bringing a regular season matchup to Mexico, being the first time in the history of the league that they left the United States within the official competition.
It was a Sunday night of October 2, 2005, when the Azteca Stadium vibrated with the duel between Arizona Cardinals against San Francisco 49ers and although the last ones were practically local, Arizona took the victory by 31-14.
Unfortunately, although it seemed that it would only be the beginning of more visits, the opening of the NFL to other countries, specifically England, prevented him from returning to Mexico for a long period of time since it was not until 2016 when another game was made official.
The furor returned with the Oakland Raider’s 27-20 win over the Houston Texans which meant the first Monday Night.
The action returned on November 19, 2017, when the New England Patriots beat the Raiders 33-8, marking the history of Tom Brady’s visit to Estadio Azteca.
However, in 2018 certain problems occurred that led to the cancellation of the game that was scheduled between Kansas City against the Los Angeles Rams, two teams that were in huge growth and that even gave a match of time that campaign, but far from Mexico.
At that time, the Azteca Stadium, home of the Águilas del América and the Mexican Football Team, was in remodeling and one of them was the change in the lawn, which was expected to be able to withstand greater activity.
But the final product did not turn out as expected and, to top it off, days before a concert of Shakira was held at the facilities, which culminated in the cancellation of the game in Mexico.
The last game that was played in Mexico was on November 18, 2019, where Kansas City was dispatched 24-17 to los Angeles Chargers, although in 2020 it was suspended due to a pandemic.
Now the party will return this November 21 in action for the 11th week of the regular season, when the 49ers return to Aztec lands against the cardinals, repeating that first game of the year 2005.