NFL International names Mawhinney special adviser

The former chairman of England's Football League has been appointed as a special adviser to NFL International.

The NFL says Brian Mawhinney will provide guidance to help further develop the league in Britain.

Mawhinney served for seven years, from January 2003 to April 2010, as chair of the Football League, which represents the 72 teams below the Premier League.

Prior to his football career, Mawhinney served as a member of the Cabinet from 1994 to 1997 and was a member of Parliament from 1979 until his retirement in 2005.

Mawhinney says American football is "developing impressively in this country and I look forward to aiding that process."

The San Francisco 49ers will play the Denver Broncos at Wembley Stadium on Sunday, Oct. 31, the fourth straight year that London will host a regular season NFL game.

In last season's game, the New England Patriots beat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 35-7 in Wembley.

"For the past three years we have seen the extraordinary passion that exists for NFL football in the U.K.," said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell in January. "We want to continue to build on that passion by strengthening our ties to our existing U.K. fans and creating new ones."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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