When the New England Patriots face the Los Angeles Rams in the Super Bowl on Sunday night (US eastern time), they will be cheered on by about 75,000 fans in the stadium, more than 100 million television viewers across the United States, and an estimated 50 million more around the world.,In short, the NFL leverages high visibility and a well-developed content strategy to engage fans in a variety of ways on and beyond game days; and it has more money to do it better than anyone else.,Indeed, any sport that is already popular enough to have coverage on free-to-air television is unlikely to see interest in NFL impact on its ratings or bottom line.,In the British market, the NFL has outlined an explicit strategic goal to be a second, third or fourth preference option among sports fans.,In Australia, a much smaller market where the top end of the sports preference list is already crowded, that potentially makes the NFL a real game-changer.

Illinois State Police documents show that the agency frequently assigns troopers to escort sports teams, musicians and even filmmakers across the congested roadways of greater Chicago.,Illinois State Police wouldn’t comment on the trip, so the Tribune made a public records request for all police escort contracts in 2018.,Though critics have called police escorts for sports teams a frivolous and potentially dangerous use of public resources, state police defend them as a way to provide “safety and security for all those involved in the motorcade as well as for the motoring public.”,The contracts show that visiting NFL teams routinely receive police escorts to and from the airport, hotels and Soldier Field.,College football teams are also major customers: Northwestern University had a standing order for police escorts between its team hotel and Ryan Field on game days, and the University of Illinois paid for the service when it played at Soldier Field in September.