CFL vs. NFL

As the Buffalo Bills enter their last year in the Toronto Series the debate to whether the NFL should make their way to Toronto permanently. Of course with the Toronto Mayor’s approval the prospect of the NFL coming to Toronto is a little bit more likely. Although there is some interest in the NFL coming to Toronto their needs to be some discussion over the effect it will have on the Toronto Argonauts. The CFL and the NFL have been competing for the collective attention of football fans in Canada and bringing the NFL to Canada would increase this competition greatly. Many football fans see the CFL as an amateur league with less skill and not anywhere near the NFL level. CFL diehards believe that the NFL is boring and slow and is all smoke and mirrors in terms of their superiority. This debate rages on within any circle of football fans. I have a different perspective on this debate however as I am a fan of both leagues for many different reasons. I tell anyone who asks me to choose which league is better that neither is better. In fact both leagues are just as good as each other and they are not better than one another instead they are just different. Their differences make it hard to compare as they have very different qualities that make them great.

The National Football League is a powerhouse in North American sports as the most popular league in North America. The NFL makes $8 billion a year in revenue and the Super Bowl seems to break the record for most views for a television show every year. With the money and the exposure the NFL tends to get the most love as people see it every Sunday and the marketing efforts create a huge following in Canada. This money earned is usually spent on players and with salaries increasing the NFL tends to attract the most in demand athletes from college. This is one thing the NFL has over the CFL as they get the athletes with the best measurables. As they get the biggest, strongest, and fastest athletes the level of play goes up. The NFL also has NFL Films that has been able to produce a number of films and series that promote the NFL game. Of course the NFL is an exciting league with some of the best players in the league and a movement towards more of a passing game and away from the running game. Still the NFL does play on a smaller field with 4 downs that tends to slow the game down a little bit. All of these aspects make the NFL a very attractive league with a very skilled membership that attracts fans. With all of this many would expect that the CFL has no chance to be more exciting or entertaining that the NFL there are reasons why the CFL is an exciting league.

The CFL may not attract the best athletes due to their money issues, the average salary is $60,000, but they do attract a certain type of player. The CFL does not concentrate on the measurables that the NFL does. Instead the CFL likes to look at if the player can play football no matter what size they are. The CFL has a history of taking in the smaller players, see Doug Flutie, that can play football as good as anyone else. With the smaller players comes another aspect that some NFLers have but almost all CFL players have. This is the chip on their shoulder that drives them to play harder every play because they got passed over by the NFL. This can also be referred to as heart and with the smaller players that play with heart comes someone who you can cheer for. Although the CFL has a lot of these players they do not have the biggest fastest and strongest players. The CFL makes up for this through their rules that make the game a lot faster. With three downs teams are forced to pass more often than run which also forces the running backs to be a little less content with a 2 or 3 yard run. The CFL is a true passing league having three of the top four passers in all of football, NFL and CFL, including Warren Moon, Damon Allen, and Anthony Calvillo. Although the NFL claims to be a passing league the CFL is the true passing league as teams are more wide open with the rules and the larger field. This is why people gravitate towards the CFL as the average game is more exciting than an average NFL game. So as I said before each league has their own great qualities that attract the fans but the qualities are do not make on league better than the other. One league is not better than the other they are just different types of football and the debate to whether the NFL or CFL is better is a non argument as it would be too hard to claim that one is better than the other.

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