German Football League

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German Football League
Logo of the German Football League

Current season GFL 2020
sport American football
abbreviation GFL
Association American Football Association Germany
League foundation 1979
Teams 16
Title holder New York Lions
Record champions New York Lions (12 titles)
TV partner Sport1

The German Football League ( GFL ) is the first division for men's American football in Germany . The amateur league is organized by the American Football Association Germany (AFVD).


The GFL was founded as the Bundesliga in 1979 under the umbrella of the American Football Association of Germany (AFBD). The following teams were founding members of the Bundesliga: Frankfurter Löwen , Hanau Hawks , Düsseldorf Panther , Munich Cowboys , Ansbach Grizzlies , Bremerhaven Seahawks and Berlin Adler .

Already after the first year of the football Bundesliga there were disputes between individual teams and the association. This resulted in the founding of a second football association, the "American Football Association" (AFV) and the Northwest German Football League (NFL), a second German football league , under the leadership of the Düsseldorf Panther .

After two years of parallel operation, both leagues were united under the umbrella of the AFVD , which was newly founded on October 16, 1982 , and the AFBD finals were considered official, while the AFV finals were not considered official.

In 1999 the 1st Bundesliga was renamed the German Football League. Since the 2001 season there has been a licensing process in which the athletically qualified clubs have to disclose their key economic data to the AFVD.

Game mode

The GFL is divided into a north and a south group. By the 2010 season , six teams played in each group. For the 2011 season , one team was added to each group, so that a total of 14 teams then played in the GFL. Each team played against every other team in their own group as well as against the team from the other group, who had placed the same ranking last season, a return game ( Interconference Games ), so that the 2011 regular season consisted of 14 games per team. This interconference rule was applied between the 1998 and 2011 seasons.

After the end of the regular season, the top four of the two GFL groups play off the German champions in the play-offs in the knockout system. The winner of one group plays against the fourth placed in the other group and the second in one group against the third in the other group. The final, and thus the game for the German championship, is the German Bowl .

As part of the relegation , the last placed in each GFL group plays against the winner of the corresponding group of the lower 2. Bundesliga (GFL2) for a place in the GFL. In 2010, due to the expansion of the GFL, the relegation games took place between the last placed in a GFL group and the runner-up in the corresponding GFL2 group. The first-placed team in GFL2 rose automatically this year. This process was repeated at the end of the 2011 season, as one more team was added to each group, so that the number of teams in the 2012 season rose to a total of 16.

The game is played according to the German rules of the AFVD, which are based on the rules of college football of the NCAA .


Teams 2020 GFL North GFL South00Blue pog.svg00Red pog.svg

GFL season 2020

GFL North

GFL South


Status: 2020 season

German champions

The reigning champions are the New York Lions after a 10: 7 win against Schwäbisch Hall Unicorns in the German Bowl XLI 2019.

A complete list can be found in the article German Bowl .

See also

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ GFL licensing procedure 2004. American Football Association Germany , June 16, 2004, accessed on April 16, 2019 .
  2. GFL is playing with 14 teams in 2011 ( Memento of the original from November 22, 2011 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link has been inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice.  @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /