Based on professional football as played in the National Football League, NFL was the first 8-bit console game to carry the official NFL license. There is no NFLPA license, though, which means the 28 real teams are included, but no player names or faces.
The player is in control of the action from a side-scrolling perspective. The camera also zooms in for closeups on receiving plays. However, NFL is also a very strategic, coaching-oriented take on the sport, featuring large playbooks (team plays are included on a separate fold-out sheet bundled with the game manual, but not onscreen in the game itself), limited customization of team skills, and penalties.