Cricket is to India as American football is to the United States. The NFL is increasingly interested in spreading its tentacles beyond the United States. In Africa and other parts of the world, the NFL has been making moves to establish its presence in most regions where it is not popular.
The status of cricket as India’s major sport is a marvel, and no other sport has been able to replicate cricket’s impact in India. Indians love other sports, but only after cricket. Many Indians stake on NFL week 5 odds and odds from other sports, but their love for cricket remains.
India’s population makes it a target for most sports and sports organizations looking to be one of the players in the country. India is a potential goldmine for the NFL. However, to tap into this potential, the NFL has to make huge commitments to India. There may not be any assurances that India will leave its first love, cricket, but it will definitely find a place for American football and the NFL.
How can the NFL increase its popularity in India?
American football has started to gain the spotlight in India due to the foray of NFL broadcasters who relay live games to Indians. As a result, Indians are now gaining more knowledge about American football and the NFL as a body.
The biggest challenge the NFL’s expansion drive will face in India is the lack of American football infrastructure and system. Therefore, the NFL has a lot of work to engineer American football’s popularity in India and distract Indians from cricket.
Here are ways the NFL can increase popularity in India:
● Invest in facilities and infrastructure
The NFL has to lay templates for Indians to build upon. Without football facilities, Indians cannot learn the game. Building infrastructure and facilities in India will require a lot of material commitment by the NFL.
● Set up educational and talent development programs
The NFL must realize that India’s relationship with American football is limited. Therefore, the NFL must concentrate its efforts toward teaching the game, especially to the youth. These youngsters can grow to become the first generation of Indian American football stars.
● Organize NFL outreaches in India
The NFL must recognize that India has several other challenges and needs all the help it can get. The NFL as a body can lead collaborations and initiatives that will improve the plight of ordinary Indians.
The NFL can break into the Indian market, but breaking into the cricket-dominated terrain of India will require serious commitments for this to be achieved.
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