In August 2007, the NFL ceased operation of NFL Europa, issuing a press release that “The Time is right to re-focus the NFL’s strategy on initiatives with global impact, including worldwide media coverage of our sport and the staging of live regular-season NFL games.”
And thus ended the NFL’s developmental league, in place since 1991 save for a two-year hiatus from 1993-94.
However, the league’s new director of football operations, Troy Vincent, told the Associated Press today that he sees the installation of a developmental league as a way to preserve and grow the game.
“We need to keep the pipeline of talent flowing, and that means for all areas of our game: players, coaches, scouts, game officials,” Vincent said. “I am responsible to look at whatever the competition committee looks at, and that includes a developmental league.
“For all this football talent around, we have to create another platform for developing it. Maybe it’s an academy — at would it look like? Maybe it’s a spring league; we’ll look to see if there is an appetite for it.”
Vincent also mentioned adding an eighth official to the referee crew for games and coaches using tablets on the sidelines.
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