Written by Matthew Cannata
81 years ago this week, the NFL established two divisions along with their championship game. The divisional structure, which was split into Western and Eastern, along with the championship game, was brought into the NFL with a strong push from Bears owner George Halas and Boston Braves owner George Preston Marshall. Of course, the Bears won the firsr NFL championship game, defeating the Giants 23-21.
Since that time, the NFL has taken on rapid growth and have changed the structure of the league throughout the course of history. In 1950, the term division was re-named to conference. In 1967, the NFL added two divisions within the conferences. The division names in the Eastern Conference were Capitol and Century and the division names in the Western Conference were Coastal and Central. In 1970, when the AFL and NFL merged together, the league moved to three divisions per conference. Then, in 2002, four divisions came into play.
While there hasn't been change in twelve years, it may be coming within the next few years. With talk of teams moving to London and/or Los Angeles, it could result in division re-alignment or an expansion team or two. The NFL's popularity is growing at an extreme pace and regardless of what happens, it looks like it will remain the most popular sport in America for quite some time.