American football’s NFL has today (September 27) unveiled IG, the financial services company, as presenting partner for the London Games and a lead partner of its NFL UK arm.
As an official partner of the league, IG branding will be on display at the London Games in October while the firm will also sponsor the player of the match award.
In addition, IG will become the lead sponsor of Sunday Night Football on pay-TV broadcaster Sky Sports and a sponsor of NFL lifestyle programming on the Sky Sports NFL channel.
The company will also have sponsorship idents across two of the NFL London Games on ITV, as well as live programming for the Super Bowl and The NFL Show on Friday evenings on the commercial broadcaster.
Earlier this month, the NFL named Experience Kissimmee, the official tourism authority for Osceola County, Florida, as a partner for its games in London this season.
Henry Hodgson, NFL UK general manager, said: “We are delighted to partner with IG as lead partner for NFL UK. With three games being played in London in 2022, and a focus on growing the game at every level in the UK in the coming years, it is an exciting time of growth for the NFL here.
“We look forward to working closely with IG in our shared ambitions to help take our game to new audiences.”
Louis Bridger, head of IG UK, added: “We’re very excited at the prospect of partnering with the NFL as it continues to grow its audience in the UK.
“The London Games, in particular, are always special occasions, and we can’t wait to play our part in bringing such inspiring experiences to both the fans in attendance and everyone watching at home.”
The NFL will stage three regular season games in London this year with the first fixture on Sunday (October 2) as the Minnesota Vikings face the New Orleans Saints at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
New York Giants vs. Green Bay Packers on October 9 (Tottenham Hotspur Stadium) and Denver Broncos vs. Jacksonville Jaguars on October 30 (Wembley Stadium) are the other games in the UK.
In 2021, the NFL London Games produced a global viewership of more than 7 million, with 122,000 attending the two games at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
Meanwhile, the NFL has revamped its Pro Bowl all-star game with a new format for the 2023 edition in Las Vegas.
The event will be renamed 'The Pro Bowl Games' with the old format to be replaced by a flag football game, the non-contact version of the sport, and week-long skills competitions.
Throughout the week, AFC and NFC players will showcase their football and non-football skills in “unique” competitions over several days.
The event will culminate in a flag game featuring Pro Bowl players at Allegiant Stadium and will air on national networks ESPN and ABC on February 5.
To organize the week-long event, the NFL will work with its partners, including ESPN, as well as high-profile players.
NFL legend Peyton Manning and his Omaha Productions company will help shape programming and promote the event’s content throughout the week.
Manning, a 14-time Pro Bowl pick during his career, will provide his perspective and will also be a part of the coaching staff for the flag game.
The Pro Bowl Games will retain the fan voting element which will help determine the NFC and AFC team rosters.
The Pro Bowl has traditionally been played as an exhibition between the best players in the AFC and NFC conferences since 1951.
The NFL has been keen to promote flag football and facilitated its inclusion in this year’s World Games in Birmingham, Alabama, in the US.