The Minnesota Vikings are set to play the Los Angeles Rams in 2018 but likely are not a candidate to join the Rams in the NFL’s proposed game in China.
The NFL reportedly plans to stage a regular season game in China in 2018, with the L.A. Rams tabbed as one of the two teams set to make the journey.
The second team has not been named, but as was pointed out by Chris Tomasson of the Pioneer-Press, the Vikings are set to be on the Rams’ schedule in 2018.
So does this mean the Vikings could end up packing their bags and heading to China? Probably not.
As ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler uncovered at the owners meetings, the Rams’ opponent in China will likely be another West Coast team.
If it makes sense at all to hold an NFL game in China, then it makes sense that the NFL would seek to send two West Coast teams on the road trip.
So, the Vikings can probably breathe easy knowing they will not be one of the two teams tabbed to participate in the NFL’s first-ever game in China.
The Vikings of course have already played a game in London, but thus far have not been named to return to the UK. All Vikings games for the foreseeable future will to the best of our knowledge be held within the confines of North America.
The NFL of course will argue that opening up the Chinese market is vital to their future survival as a global sports juggernaut. The NBA already has a foot-hold over there, so why not the NFL as well?
It certainly will be fascinating to see how the first game in China comes off. It’s always interesting watching people from other cultures react to American things.
Whether the NFL brand of football can really catch on in China is another question altogether.