The NFL International Series is taking the next step toward expansion.
NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reports the league is taking the next critical step toward playing a regular season game in Germany, possibly as early as 2022.
The NFL will announce Germany's three finalist cities on Tuesday, Oct. 12, according to Rapoport. The NFL requested proposals for future regular-season games in Germany this past June.
The league remains committed to multiple games in London and a game in Mexico City with Germany potentially in the mix going forward. This past April, in accordance with expanding the regular season to 17 games, NFL owners approved a new scheduling formula for international games. Starting in 2022, there will be at least four games played internationally every season and each NFL team will take a turn to host an international contest once every eight seasons.
Beginning in 2007, the International Series has comprised 28 regular-season games in London and three games in Mexico City. The initiative has featured 31 of 32 NFL teams with the Green Bay Packers being the only club not to play a regular-season game internationally.
The news comes ahead of the first international game in nearly two years after the league cancelled its five scheduled games for the 2020 season in London and Mexico City due to the COVID-19 pandemic. On Sunday, the Atlanta Falcons (1-3) will host the New York Jets (1-3) at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in London. The NFL returns to the same location in Week 6, when the Jacksonville Jaguars host the Miami Dolphins on Oct. 17.
Expanding to Germany shows the continued growth and success of the NFL International Series.