In 2014, the Dallas Cowboys will make the trip across the pond to take on the Jacksonville Jaguars in London. Although Dallas has played preseason and exhibition contests at international locales, next year's matchup will be the Cowboys' first regular season game overseas.
The time and date are yet to be determined, but one crucial detail is certain: the Jaguars will be the home team at Wembley Stadium. Dallas regularly packs in around 100,000 fans at AT&T Stadium, and Cowboys owner Jerry Jones had held out on playing in London until another team agreed to give up its home field advantage.
Jacksonville appears to have no qualms about making a second home in London. The Jags face the San Francisco 49ers at Wembley on October 27 — the first of four "home" games for the Jags in London between 2013 and 2016.
The Cowboys and Jaguars are one of three Wembley Stadium contests in 2014. The Atlanta Falcons will play the Detroit Lions, and the Oakland Raiders will take on the Miami Dolphins.
The NFL has been courting European fans since 2007, when the league first started playing regular season games in London. In six years, the average attendance at Wembly Stadium's NFL games has grown to 82,443, and London TV ratings have doubled. Wembley Stadium — which traces its roots back to King George V in 1924 — has 90,000 seats and boasts no obstructed views.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell is glad American football is gaining ground in Europe. "Our fans in the UK continue to demonstrate their passion for more football," Goodell said in a statement.
"The growing enthusiasm for the NFL internationally is exciting, and we look forward to continuing to respond to this interest in our game."