NFL commissioner Roger Goodell and his CFL counterpart Randy Ambrosie have been in contact during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The big, bad NFL is currently playing its 2020 season while the three-down league tries to put football back on the field in 2021.
“We’ve always had a good relationship with the NFL, but in my discussions with Roger Goodell, he’s encouraged us to find a path for the CFL that creates our own long-term future, and long-term stability,” Ambrosie said on The Rod Pedersen Show.
In 1997 when the CFL was experiencing financial issues, the NFL loaned the league to the north $3 million of interest-free money, which was eventually repaid. As part of the agreement, the CFL created the NFL window for players to be able to sign south of the border in the off-season. However, there isn’t going to be financial support from the NFL as the CFL works through losses due to the coronavirus.
“Do I see a natural coming together? No. But we’ll always keep those lines of communication open. I have a lot of respect for them, obviously, they’re the big dog,” Ambrosie said.
The Canadian commish stated it’s important to remember the CFL is the second biggest football league in the world. Ambrosie feels the 2.0 international strategy is a chance to put the game on the global stage and show the league’s importance around the world without being arrogant.
“The NFL and the CFL always enjoy a good relationship, we do lots together. We share lots of work on player safety and health, we share lots of work on officiating,” Ambrosie said.
“We’ve talked a lot about our international strategy, I’ve gotten encouragement from them that this is good for the future of football around the world.”