BEARS, JAGS AND VIKINGS CONFIRMED FOR NFL LONDON 2024
Jaguars extend their Wembley residency, while Vikings hope to continue rich vein of form in the Capital and Bears look for second win.
The NFL has announced the first three teams set to play in London this year, with the Chicago Bears and Minnesota Vikings taking to the turf at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
London's adopted team, the Jacksonville Jaguars will also return for their 12th visit to Wembley Stadium.
Our capital city has been a happy hunting ground for the Vikings, who'll be hoping to maintain their unbeaten record after three wins in 2013, 2017 and 2022. The Bears are currently 1-1, having beaten the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2011 before being pipped to a narrow defeat by the then-Oakland Raiders in 2019.
After beating both the Atlanta Falcons and the Buffalo Bills a week apart last year, Jaguars coach Doug Pederson suggested they might be getting used to the London way of life, saying: “I think it’s relatively safe to say that we’ll probably each year play two games over here,” before quickly backtracking on the idea. Perhaps the fact that only one team has been named for the two Wembley games so far is an indication that he was right.
The Jags have enjoyed a steady 6-5 record in London with high-scoring games being the order of the day, but they might want to forget some of their earliest visits, having been trounced 42-10 by the 49ers in their first outing in 2017 and following up with a 31-17 defeat at the hands of the Cowboys a year later. A run of three wins was quickly replaced by two straight losses in what can only be described as a patchy record at Wembley Stadium, but they've put two successful games between this year's visit and 2022, when a late crumble saw them taste defeat to the Broncos.
We'll find out confirmed game dates and who'll be facing off against the Bears, Vikings and Jags when the full NFL schedule is announce this spring.
“We certainly owe a debt of thanks to the thousands of fans in the U.K., Ireland and throughout Europe who have made the Jaguars their NFL team since our first London home game in 2013,” says Shad Khan, owner of the Jacksonville Jaguars.
“We’ve now played 11 games in London, have forged deep relationships with fans and businesses, have introduced American football to young people that participate in our community programs throughout the U.K., and we’ve raised funds and supported causes that touch many lives. In all, we’ve established a strong Jaguars tradition in London that our fans and followers celebrate every day of the year. That tradition continues next season when the Jaguars return to London, and we can’t wait to see everyone once again in Wembley Stadium, our home away from home.”
George McCaskey, chairman of the Bears is also looking forward to the visit: “Every game the Chicago Bears play is rich in tradition, culture and passion. And every year, game after game, we look forward to welcoming fans to experience that richness.
“This year, we will take our storied franchise and tradition back to London and share internationally what our fans locally experience at every game. We are excited to join the many NFL teams who are expanding internationally to play a game in London during our 2024 season.”
And the Vikings owner Mark Wilf shares their sentiments: “We are honored to once again represent the NFL in the continued effort to make the game of football more accessible globally.
“We’ve seen tremendous international support of the Vikings with our previous three London games and with our successful bid to land the United Kingdom as a global market. Our focus will be on winning for the fourth consecutive time in London, along with replicating the incredible gameday environment we enjoy in Minnesota and creating a memorable experience for our partners and fans.”
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