The National Football League is the biggest, and by far the most popular sports league in the country. The start of the NFL completely revolutionized the American sport experience for both the fans and the athletes alike. Before the NFL, there was no football conference that brought teams together to compete against each other; there were only area-specific professional teams. The NFL brought together athletes and professionals from across the country for the first time in the history of the United States to what would eventually be the greatest game in the world. .
The NFL was originally founded in 1920, under the title ˜American Professional Football Conference.' Jim Thorpe, who was previously an Olympic competitor, developed the idea with several well-known football coaches, athletes and team owners. The original roster only included eleven teams from the states of Ohio, Illinois, Michigan, New York, Wisconsin and Indiana. Over the next few years, other teams attempted to join, but these dozen or so teams didn't often finish the season. The first NFL championship conference winners were the unrivaled Akron Pros from Ohio, which is now the name of the college team the Akron Zips.
About ten years after its first game, the NFL began to dip in and out of popularity, until it began to soar in the 1930s. New teams from larger cities along the east coast were joining in with the national league. Teams soon began drafting college players and eventually incorporated multiracial teams, though segregation was an issue for several decades. By the end of World War II, the NFL was capturing the attention of teams, players and average citizens from across the United States. In 1966, the NFL hosted the very first Super Bowl, won by the famous Green Bay Packers. The league further established its dominance in the sporting world by merging with its only significant competitor in 1970 " the widely popular American Football League (AFL) the NFL is now divided into two conferences the NFC and the AFC.