NFL International Series: Potential of a London franchise could be tested by games on back-to-back weekends in 2015

Maimi Dolphins were the first side to host an NFL match at Wembley (Source: Getty)
This Sunday marks the third and final fixture in this year's NFL International Series, yet gridiron fans in the UK already have dates to mark in their diaries for its return next year.
In 2015 fans will be urged to cheer on the New York Jets, the Buffalo Bills and the Detroit Lions as they host the Miami Dolphins, the Jacksonville Jaguars and the Kansas City Chiefs at the 90,000 capacity stadium in London.
For the first time ever, two games will take place on consecutive weekends, with the Bills vs the Jaguars taking place on week seven of the competition and the Lions facing the Chiefs seven days later on week eight.
The move to host games on consecutive weekends is considered key to setting the groundwork for a potential London franchise in the future. NFL executive vice president of international, Mark Waller, has told City AM that the Wembley pitch needs to prove it can cope with the demands of a busy NFL schedule.
He said:
I do think we need to play three games back to back so we show that any field we play on here can sustain that – if it’s Wembley, so that the England soccer team can play the week after.
The last thing we can do is come here and play and then leave the field unplayable for a major soccer game.
Despite being the designated away team, the Detroit Lions enjoyed an incredible comeback against the Falcons at Wembley a fortnight ago. They are likely to return as the home side next year having won over a number of English hearts.
The Miami Dolphins, the first ever “home” team to host an NFL game at Wembley, will visit London for the third time. Their game against AFC East rivals the New York Jets will be the first divisional game to take place in the UK and will kick-off the 2015 International Series on Sunday 4 October.
As had been expected, the Jacksonville Jaguars will host a game at Wembley for the third successive season. Crossing the pond for the first time are the Buffalo Bills, the New York Jets and the Kansas City Chiefs.

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