Colleges began playing games in the mid 19th century using modified rules from soccer and rugby. That’s when American football dates back to. Consequently many companies started sponsoring professional teams as football started becoming popular in the States. Eventually, the American Professional Football Association (APFA) was started in 1920 which was the direct forerunner of the National Football League (NFL). All the NFL teams have played an important part in establishing the rules and customs of today’s NFL. Below are five oldest teams that entered the NFL by the date.
#1 Arizona Cardinals – Year Established: 1898 (123 years ago)
According to NFL Sportskeeda, the Cardinals is one of only two teams that were part of the inaugural NFL roster, along with the Chicago Bears and they are also the oldest team in the NFL. Since 1988, the franchise has been based out of Arizona. But their history traces all the way back to 1898, decades before even when the NFL was founded. Initially, they were known as the Morgan Athletic Club. A few years later the team bought used jerseys from the University of Chicago, which was called the faded color “Cardinal red” by the team founder Chris O’Brien.
#2 Green Bay Packers – Year Established: 1919 (102 years ago)
Until its second year, the Green Bay Packers hadn’t joined the NFL. It is the oldest continuous franchise that has never moved or changed its name. Since its inception in 1919, the Packers have been based out of Green Bay, Wisconsin, and were sponsored by the Indian Packing Company.
#3 Chicago Bears – Year Established: 1920 (101 years ago)
The Chicago Bears are the only current franchise, alongside the Arizona Cardinals, that has been around since the first year of the NFL in 1920. The Bears started out as the Staleys in Decatur, Illinois. The following year they were moved to Chicago. In 1922, the team changed its name to the Chicago Bears and has never moved cities or changed its name since then.
#4 New York Giants – Year Established: 1925 (96 years ago)
Since it was founded, The New York Giants have remained in the same city. Founded in 1925 by Tim Mara,, he purchased the franchise in New York for $500. Mara had invested another $25,000 by the end of that first season. The New York Giants were a popular, strong and skilled teamfrom the beginning. During its first season, more than 70,000 people had come out to watch the team play.
#5 Detroit Lions – Year Established: 1929 (90 years ago)
The Detroit Lions were formed in 1934. George A. Richards, who was a Detroit radio executive, purchased the Portsmouth, Ohio, Spartans for $8,000, which was an unheard of amount of money at the time. Initially formed in 1929, the Spartans joined the NFL the following year. The Spartans played in one of the most important games in NFL history two years later, a championship game against the Chicago Bears. After that game, three major rule changes were put in place. The NFL was separated into two divisions and a championship game was annually played.