Robert Hanashiro | USA TODAY Sports

It is debatable whether America needs a professional spring football league. But it certainly does not need two of them. Which is why this day was always coming.

From Axios:

Pro football leagues XFL and USFL are in advanced talks to merge, three sources familiar with the situation tell Axios. … The merger would be structured as a merger of equals and would require regulatory approval, one of the sources said. The leagues hope to combine before the 2024 seasons.

The USFL is owned by FOX. A group helmed by Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson owns the XFL. The two leagues have taken different approaches so far. The USFL leaned into central locations to save costs and intellectual property from the original USFL to generate interest; FOX executives have claimed it is profitable in the past. And the XFL has a formal partnership with the NFL for innovation purposes, more star power, pays more and has teams in home markets and ESPN distribution. But it also reportedly lost $60 million in Year 1.

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How should a merger work? If we had to guess: It’s a 10- or 12-team league where the USFL name sticks, Johnson remains involved and the league plays in home markets that make sense. And no matter what, we would be stunned if the New Jersey Generals ever get closer to home than Canton, Ohio. We do not need spring football here.

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James Kratch can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @jameskratch.

James Kratch is the managing editor of ESNY. He previously worked as a Rutgers and Giants (and Mike Francesa) beat reporter for NJ Advance Media.