IOC Makes Flag Football An Olympic Sport For 2028 Summer Games

Flag Football has been approved for the 2028 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles, news that was announced Monday by the NFL and International Federation of American Football. 

International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach speaks at a press conference after the second day of the 141st IOC session in Mumbai, India, Monday, Oct. 16, 2023. (AP Photo/Rafiq Maqbool)

The NFL and International Federation of American Football (IFAF) announced the approval of flag football as an official sport in the 2028 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles. The NFL and LA28 dropped a short video today starring Seahawks wideout DK Metcalf, introducing flag football as one of five sports (cricket, lacrosse, baseball, softball) being added to the 2018 summer games.

Flag football becomes an official game for the first time in Olympic history, as the NFL FLAG program continues to spread its wings throughout the globe. Metcalf joined a group of NFL stars like Denver Broncos quarterback Russell Wilson and Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Maxx Crosby in a series of promotional videos supporting the announcement that features international women's flag stars like World Games Gold medalist Diana Flores. The star quarterback and Chair of the IFAF Athletes' Committee commented on the opportunity to compete in the Olympics.

"To compete in the Olympic Games is the ultimate dream of every athlete," said Flores. "And millions of flag football players around the world will go to sleep dreaming of Los Angeles 2028 tonight. I want to thank everyone who has made this possible - including all my fellow athletes and ambassadors who have played such a central role in driving the project forward. Together, we are determined to use this incredible stage to showcase the best of flag football - its speed, athleticism and creativity, and also its power to transform lives and include new communities in sports. As an athlete community, we are proud to be leading the way, but our goal must be to use this opportunity to inspire, lift up and empower a new generation around the world."

Recently, the IFAF and NFL joined forces to create Vision28, a partnership devoted to expanding the game of flag football globally. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell discussed his pleasure with the approval and the opportunity to grow the game of football.

"Congratulations to the International Federation of American Football on this landmark achievement," said Goodell. "For flag football and the global community that loves and plays our game it's a tremendous honor for any athlete to represent their country at the Olympics. We have no doubt that this decision will inspire millions of young people around the world to play this game in the years ahead. The NFL is committed to working together to strengthen flag football's place in the Olympic movement long term, and we look forward to continuing this exciting journey with IFAF, the LA28 Organizing Committee, the International Olympic Committee and USA Football."

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