Mentioning that the average NFL game has only about 11 minutes of live gameplay to an NFL fan is something that a non-fan of the NFL would probably love to speak on. Those that don’t care for the NFL and want to make it known usually find any and every way to make the sport a little less appealing for anyone. There is a grain of truth in this article however since commercial time for an NFL broadcast is quite extensive, and the shots of the coaches, the players, the refs, and of the players getting up and dusting themselves off after each play takes up a lot of time. But if you really watch the game without a timer in your hand you’ll notice that most plays take seconds, not minutes. For that entire span of time, usually between 2 and 3 hours depending on the game, those seconds add up eventually.
Unlike sports such as soccer or baseball that aren’t as high impact and don’t require a moment to catch your breath after getting leveled by a linebacker moving like a freight train to intercept a running back or a wide receiver, football does take some time to reset and get back to the line. Soccer can feature heavy impacts and injuries as well, but at the speeds they’re moving the damage usually isn’t quite as bad. Some people might claim this is why football is so dangerous but think of it this way, the pads and the helmets are designed to take a good deal of the damage so that the players can actually get back up when the play is over. If a soccer player took half the the damage that football players are taking they’d be out of the game indefinitely. Both sports require a great deal of skill, training, and endurance, but the time played between them is far different since soccer seems to be more like a chess match at times where football is far more fast-paced and played in a series of moments rather than minutes.
Football is more about short bursts and hard hits while soccer is definitely about moving the ball up and down the field and having to be able to change directions at the drop of a hat once the other team has the ball. So if there’s only 11 minutes of real playing time in the NFL, and this is debatable between various games, then it’s because football is played much more aggressively and with shorter increments of time during the plays. Just sit down and watch a game and you’ll realize that from the moment the ball is snapped to the moment that the receiver or running back is tackled only a handful of seconds have passed. The rest of the programming is advertising and fillers, which is easy enough to ignore and push through to get back to the action.
Plus, for those 11 minutes this sport is way more exciting than several others that can drag on for an hour or more and do very little in comparison.