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The NFL doesn’t have a developmental league, but it will take measures to improve the game of football by using the XFL as a testing site. The XFL announced Monday it would collaborate with the NFL on select innovation programs to further expand the game of football and create increased opportunities for player development both on and off the field.
Could this mean the start of a developmental league for the NFL? Would the XFL be that league? The NFL and XFL won’t go to those measures yet, but the XFL will work with the NFL on developing forward-thinking physical and mental fitness programs for players, the study of playing surfaces and equipment and the sharing of game trends and data.
In a press release provided by the XFL, the league announced its collaboration with the NFL may include international football development as well as scouting and officiating improvements — including the testing of different game rules for player protection and enhanced overall play, along with different technologies to enhance officiating.
“We are extremely pleased to collaborate with the NFL in these important areas,” said XFL Co-Owner and Chairwoman Dany Garcia. “We are bringing forward an XFL that is progressive and forward-thinking when it comes to innovation, leveraging the newest technology to enhance gameday experience. We have an open field for innovative rules to enhance in-game access. Sharing insights and practices between the XFL and NFL will do a tremendous amount of good for the game of football and support the player ecosystem overall.”
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, RedBird Capital and Dany Garcia, Johnson’s ex-wife and business partner, teamed up to purchase the XFL for approximately $15 million in 2020. The XFL’s first comeback season in 2020 was cut short by the coronavirus pandemic. It will begin the third incarnation of the league in 2023.
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