A recent article has demonstrated just how far teams will have to travel for the upcoming 2022 NFL season, and there are some vastly different numbers on show.
The 2022 NFL season’s schedule is set to be released next Thursday at 8pm ET, as teams find out exactly when and where they will be playing their games in the autumn and winter months.
Teams already know who they will be facing, one of the benefits of playing in a league with no promotion or relegation means that the NFL can put together a large portion of their schedule ahead of time, which is where their intra and inter-divisional rotation system comes in incredibly handy.
However, the one thing that they don’t know is in what order the games will be played and when their bye-week is, which is more important than it sounds.
More than just who you’re playing
For instance you don’t want to play a physical team like the Minnesota Vikings who ranked 2nd in the league in sacks last year on the road after a Monday night game, nor would you want a short Thursday-Sunday turnaround to get used to playing the Denver Broncos at altitude.
So there is an awful lot riding on the order in which games will be played, and travel is also an important part of the equation.
How far will teams have to go?
Rest and recovery is critically important in a game like football, and the last thing you want is to spend time on an airplane traveling to and from your games. But it’s part and parcel of the job and for some it is more of an ordeal than others.
As compiled by journalist Bill Speros, and relayed by Adam Schefter on Twitter, the Seattle Seahawks have got the unenviable task of doing the most travelling of any team, as they are set to clock up 29,446 miles and cross 34 time zones to play their 17 games:
With the full NFL schedule being released Thursday night, here is a look at the teams that will travel the most miles and the most time zones this season, via @billsperos.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) May 6, 2022
The Steelers will travel the fewest miles and not leave the eastern time zone all season. pic.twitter.com/MAzxijyYAC
Up in the Pacific Northwest, their travel every season is pretty daunting as they are pretty on their own in terms of location which is enough to rack up the miles, but when you add in their presence at the NFL Germany game in Munich in November, it really pushes the numbers up.
Contrast that to the Pittsburgh Steelers who, by virtue of playing near the northeast where a lot of teams are, and playing each of their away games in the eastern timezone, mean that they only travel 6,442 and do not leave their timezone all season.
As the numbers show, there are a lot of teams that will have to do a lot of travelling, you just have to hope that the schedule is kind to them to minimise the effects of it throughout the year, with no back-to-back long trips.