We’re sorry to pass along the news, via SI’s Peter King, that the NFL has decided it won’t seek sponsors for the NFL Matchup show, ending a 26-year partnership with the program.
The show isn’t quite dead yet, though. ESPN could decide to own and operate the show itself to keep it on the air. We implore them to do so.
This news is sobering, but perhaps enough fan support can keep the show alive.
We don’t pretend to understand the economics of the situation. But it’s a sad reflection of the sports television industry and us as viewers if there is no place for one intelligent Sunday morning football show.
NFL Matchup — hosted by Sal Paolantonio, Ron Jaworski, and Merril Hoge — is the only preview show that respects the audience enough to actually talk about (gasp) football. You learned something every time you watched. (Or Tivo’d, since the show came on at odd hours.)
The rest of the morning programs seem programed for high schoolers that like WWE-style manufactured storylines, forced laughter, meaningless debates, soft features, and very little football. You rarely learn anything.
Apparently, that’s what we want.