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3 Cities Where We Don't Want to See the NFL Play

Athlon Sports 10/2/2022 Aaron Tallent
© Provided by Athlon Sports

The NFL should avoid these foreign cities at all costs

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The NFL International Series resumes this weekend when the Minnesota Vikings play the New Orleans Saints in London

The league has already played regular-season games abroad in Canada and Mexico City and will play in Munich, Germany, in November. Not to mention previous exhibition games in Australia, Canada, Ireland, Japan, Spain, and Sweden.

Related: 10 Facts About NFL Games Played Outside of the U.S.

While we would like to see the league expand to play in other cities, there are places that it should avoid at all costs. Here are the top three.

3. Beijing, China

The NFL has tried to schedule a preseason game in China in 2007 and '09, and the Los Angeles Rams can freely market their team to China through the International Home Marketing Areas initiative. However, if the league intertwines its business with China's market, it could find itself in a situation like the NBA where the players seem to be empowered to speak out on every human rights violation throughout the world except the country's treatment of the Uyghur population. Or it could find its players issuing apologies in Mandarin like John Cena did when he described Taiwan as a country.

2. Moscow, Russia

There actually was a period in the early to mid-2000s where the idea of the NFL playing a game in Moscow seemed like it could eventually happen, but that was before the poisonings, election interference, and invasion of Ukraine. Russia has also arrested American athletes in the past on trumped-up charges, including eight-time WNBA All-Star Brittney Griner.

1. Pyongyang, North Korea

If North Korea being the worst violator of human rights is not enough for you, check out Vice TV's "Dark Side of the Ring" episode on World Championship Wrestling's "Collision in Korea." North Korean officials confiscated the wrestlers' passports and made Ric Flair say, "His Excellency, Kim Il-sung, will always be with us," after he refused to read a statement saying North Korea could dominate the United States.

Related: 5 Cities Where We Would Like to See the NFL Play

— Written by Aaron Tallent, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network. Tallent is a writer whose articles have appeared in The Sweet Science, FOX Sports' Outkick the Coverage, Liberty Island and The Washington Post. Follow him on Twitter at @AaronTallent.

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