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NFL “enhancement” could rain on Olympic parade

The question of whether the NFL will “enhance” the regular season eventually will yield to the question of how the league will cram two more weekends of football into a schedule that currently stretches from three days after Labor Day until early February.

We address the logistics generally in our upcoming PFT Video Mailbag, which should be posted just in time for our friends in the Eastern time zone to “enhance” their Friday lunch breaks by a couple of minutes.

Michael Hiestand of USA Today addresses a specific logistical reality.  In 2014, when New York/New Jersey hosts the first open-air, cold-weather Super Bowl, “the Game” likely will conflict with the Winter Olympic Games.

Under the current formula, Super Bowl XLVIII would be played on February 2, 2014.  And the 2014 Winter Olympic Games are set to begin on February 7.  As a result, an adjustment to the league’s calendar that pushes the Super Bowl even one week deeper would create a direct conflict between sport’s biggest single-day event and its premier February fortnight.

As a practical matter, the mere possibility of a head-to-head ratings battle likely takes FOX, which will televise Super Bowl XLVIII, out of the mix for the rights to the 2014 Winter Olympic Games.  And it likely would make the U.S. broadcast rights for the 2014 Games less appealing, and in turn less valuable.

Meanwhile, having the rights would create some significant programming challenges.  How could ABC/ESPN or NBC/Comcast provide appropriate saturation coverage to the New York Super Bowl while also justifying the expenditure on the Olympics by pumping out images of the various events that will be occurring on the day that the Super Bowl is played?

The smart move for the folks who run the Olympics could be to figure out the league’s plans post-haste and then adjust the dates of the Winter Games, if that’s even possible.  There’s a good chance that it’s already too late to call an Olympic audible.

It also could make sense for the NFL to find a way to keep Super Bowl XLVIII on February 2, in deference to an international community whose sports fans the league is hoping to eventually woo.

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52 Responses to “NFL “enhancement” could rain on Olympic parade”
  1. Poo Flinging Monkey says: Aug 27, 2010 11:38 AM

    There’s nothing wrong with any form of “enhancement”.
    Regards,
    The Enzyte Guy

  2. Dolphin Fan says: Aug 27, 2010 11:39 AM

    The Daytona 500 would be on February 14th as well.
    Oh yeah I think that’s Valentine’s Day too. D’oh!

  3. duffsbeer says: Aug 27, 2010 11:46 AM

    If they are removing 2 preseason games, just take those two weeks and make them week 1/2 of the regular season. Or if they don’t want to play outdoors in middle august (which they do anyways in preseason) Take week 4 of the preseason and make that week 1 of the regular season. Take away the extra week that happends between NFC AFC championships and the superbowl.
    Either way same end date.

  4. Percy Headachin says: Aug 27, 2010 11:46 AM

    I have heard of male enhancement but never nfl enhancement

  5. TwoHands says: Aug 27, 2010 11:46 AM

    Two more games will enhance the quality of football the way implants enhance the quality of breasts.

  6. texasPHINSfan says: Aug 27, 2010 11:46 AM

    Not going to lie, I’ve never watched the winter olympics anyway…

  7. username says: Aug 27, 2010 11:47 AM

    This is not really that intractable of a problem.
    The game last 4 hours and Olympic coverage is rarely live. Just broadcast figure skating instead of hockey while the SB is being played.
    As long as the SB is concluded before March Madness starts everthing is fine.

  8. Sociofan says: Aug 27, 2010 11:47 AM

    I think the NFL will have to budge on this one. The rest of the world will be royally pissed about moving the entire Olympic Games for the sake of a single “American football game”. And given how much the NFL desires to lure a broader global audience, they can only win by defering to the Olympics.

  9. petro says: Aug 27, 2010 11:47 AM

    Really? The Olympics don’t even matter in this country as far as viewership as opposed to football. Hockey may do well if the U.S. makes a run but I know that a good matchup would crush any Olympic even and that includes the Olympic opening cermony.

  10. mustbechris says: Aug 27, 2010 11:48 AM

    Honestly, the NFL does what it wants, much more than the other three North American sports leagues, just because it can. That’s why they put the Super Bowl in New York in 2014. What’s more interesting to me is the ESPN factor in all of this. The Olympics have been on NBC recently, but if ABC picks up the 2014 Olympics, and it’s going head to head with the Super Bowl on ABC…it’d be interesting to see where ESPN throws their programming that weekend.
    As far as the Olympics changing their schedule around to accommodate the Super Bowl…not gonna happen. The Olympics is the biggest ratings draw worldwide every two years, and they’re not going to adjust their programming to suit an American sports league’s championship game. If anyone blinks here, it’ll be the NFL. But even then, I’m not sure they will, simply because they know that on one hand it’s a slight ratings hit, but on the other hand it’s a head-to-head battle the NFL will win in America.
    Who knows. Roger Goodell’s ego is hard to predict.

  11. Chapnasty. says: Aug 27, 2010 11:49 AM

    First of all…. Who watches the Olympics?
    Second of all… Who the HELL watches NASCAR?

  12. imabigdog says: Aug 27, 2010 11:51 AM

    This is Andre the Giant vs. Hulk Hogan…
    Both of these events believe they are the biggest bad asses on the block. This should be a fun one to watch.
    Considering that COMCAST likes to create networks, I would expect that if COMCAST was to get the rights to the Winter Games you will see 2 or 3 Olympic Channels appear.

  13. Filbertkiwi71 says: Aug 27, 2010 11:54 AM

    The SB may be more important in the U.S. than the Olympics, however it is safe to assume that the rest of the world cares more about the Olympics.
    I understand that this is PFT and all, but you really have to take off your butt kissing NFL glasses every now and then and understand that not everyone shares your apparent deaf, dumb, and blind loyalty to the NFL and good old Rog.

  14. jj jones says: Aug 27, 2010 11:55 AM

    The Olympics will not move anything for the sake of the NFL. That much I can guarantee.

  15. don4953 says: Aug 27, 2010 11:55 AM

    Who said anything about adding games on at the end of the year? Why cant they be played in August and first week in September? Hmm problem solved now stfu Florio.

  16. Pistol says: Aug 27, 2010 11:56 AM

    You didn’t actually just suggest rescheduling the Olympics to accommodate the NFL did you? I absolutely love the NFL, but the Olympics are a much more important global event than the Superbowl. Not in America of course, but there is a world outside the borders. Just in case you hadn’t noticed.

  17. Complete Fan says: Aug 27, 2010 11:56 AM

    “The smart move for the folks who run the Olympics could be to figure out the league’s plans post-haste and then adjust the dates of the Winter Games, if that’s even possible. There’s a good chance that it’s already too late to call an Olympic audible.”
    ————————————————–
    Wow!!!!! A world-wide event giving way to a sports league that runs exclusively in the United States.
    You have really outdone yourself this time, Florio.

  18. overkil2 says: Aug 27, 2010 11:56 AM

    Who cares? There is a wonderful thing called TiVo!!

  19. Belichick Is God says: Aug 27, 2010 11:56 AM

    Isn’t the idea that the season just starts earlier since the last two exhibtion games become real games? Why change the schedule?

  20. EverybodyGotAIDS says: Aug 27, 2010 11:57 AM

    Why don’t they just show something like Ice Dancing or Synchronized Prancing or whatever the hell they have going on now? Make it the polar opposite of football and/or whatever you expect to have the lowest ratings.
    Maybe just combine all those human interest pieces they do on how some guy from Luxemborg overcame irritable bowel syndrome and his parents dying to win bronze in the 300m speed skating.

  21. Gautam says: Aug 27, 2010 12:00 PM

    why not start the season earlier ? Why does the season only have to start after Labor Day. I’m not an American, so I’m not sure why is it this way every season.

  22. MN Boise Fan says: Aug 27, 2010 12:01 PM

    Might have to start the regular season before Labor Day that season. Not ideal, but certainly a fair compromise for all involved.

  23. hineswardcriesafterfumbling says: Aug 27, 2010 12:04 PM

    Maybe Roger Goodell can stop Rex-Ryaning up the game.

  24. pluto says: Aug 27, 2010 12:10 PM

    just go on with the scheduled events and let the viewers decide what they want to watch. personally i don’t care to watch the olympics, but i do respect the athletes and the time and effort they put into there training.

  25. montanabob says: Aug 27, 2010 12:11 PM

    The olypics are lame; no one cares; huge waste of money.
    should be called the ‘Im not good at real sports Gaymes’

  26. _ROCKSTAR_ says: Aug 27, 2010 12:12 PM

    It would be a big deal for the NFL if the SB wasn’t the biggest single sporting event in the world. Sure keep in mind what you are competing against and adjust but when you are the NFL and have a SB to play who cares! Thats the others sports to worry about.

  27. birdmancometh says: Aug 27, 2010 12:17 PM

    You really think the Olympics will get changed for the Super Bowl?!!??! You are out of your damn mind.

  28. Brewster says: Aug 27, 2010 12:18 PM

    @EverybodyGotAIDS
    Very funny post.

  29. Wonderlicker says: Aug 27, 2010 12:18 PM

    NFL regular season games in August would be death to ratings. ALL ratings are down in August compared to September. And since when does the NFL leave money on the table?

  30. Fogs77 says: Aug 27, 2010 12:25 PM

    Who cares

  31. afiresnake says: Aug 27, 2010 12:26 PM

    What an ignorant American Idiot are you that you believe that they will move the Olympic Games? Hello, you are not the center of the universe.
    The games are in Sochi, there is time lag, and absolutely zero chance of any competition at 2am local.
    Friggin dumbass.

  32. rbais2 says: Aug 27, 2010 12:31 PM

    I know Florio loved ripping on Bryant Gumbel when he did NFL Network games. Well, he can rip on the both of us if he disagrees with our unanimity in disliking the Winter Olympics.
    The “Winter Games. Count [us] among those who don’t like ‘em and won’t watch ‘em. In fact, [we] figure when Thomas Paine said “these are the times that try men’s souls,” he must have been talking about the start of another Winter Olympics. Because they’re so trying, maybe over the next three weeks we should all try too.
    Like try not to be incredulous when someone attempts to link these games to those of the ancient Greeks who never heard of skating or skiing.”
    The NFL should NOT put the Super Bowl in mid-February and leave the current calendar as it is. Before 9/11, the season started during the first week of September. Now we are forced to wait and count down more days because we had to keep consistent with the 2001 season calendar and not get any player hurt “too” early.
    If big-name players like Michael Vick, Chad Pennington, and Elvis Dumervil can get injured during the preseason, why is there concern when those same days would have different settings?
    Just let the players have more healing time and stay at the current playing weight, body fat, and muscle mass. The only penalties they should suffer during this period are fines for being out of shape.

  33. Harm City Homer says: Aug 27, 2010 12:32 PM

    so what?

  34. birdmancometh says: Aug 27, 2010 12:36 PM

    @Gautam – It hasn’t always started after labor day. Thats a realitively recent thing.

  35. EverybodyGotAIDS says: Aug 27, 2010 12:43 PM

    afiresnake says:
    August 27, 2010 12:26 PM
    What an ignorant American Idiot are you that you believe that they will move the Olympic Games? Hello, you are not the center of the universe.
    The games are in Sochi, there is time lag, and absolutely zero chance of any competition at 2am local.
    __________________
    WTF is a sochi?

  36. Sociofan says: Aug 27, 2010 12:47 PM

    Wow. I am stunned at how many readers on this site dislike/outright hate the Olympics. I love football, but I definitely tune in to the Winter Games every 4 years. Luge, speed skating, hockey…it’s some of the best competition in sports. Goodell has to recognize that the NFL is one player (albeit the second biggest…European football leagues are bigger) in the world sports scene and the league has to play nice to win over fans. I agree with the posters who suggest starting the season earlier, even if only every 4 years when the Olympics are in town.

  37. Chapnasty. says: Aug 27, 2010 12:51 PM

    @ afiresnake
    America is the center of the universe turd.

  38. hooks024 says: Aug 27, 2010 12:52 PM

    tell the iocc to schedule figure skating and such that day. then there will be no conflict for any nfl fans, as the fans of figure skating tend to be a little too light in the loafers for football anyways.

  39. Rick Wilson says: Aug 27, 2010 12:58 PM

    The Olympics suck. Let the rest of the world who are unfortunate enough to not have football watch them.
    Stupid olympics

  40. Superbelt says: Aug 27, 2010 1:42 PM

    Olympics are lame, corrupt, greedy and even more commercialized than the NFL.
    If the Olympics don’t want to compete with the NFL, move to avoid them.
    If the rest of the world wants to watch Olympics, they can, the NFL isn’t going to stop you.
    We could care less here.

  41. BenRapistberger says: Aug 27, 2010 1:59 PM

    How am I going to choose between the Superbowl, and cross-country skiing with guns?

  42. Geetee52 says: Aug 27, 2010 1:59 PM

    What is the point of cable and satellite systems having a thousand channels if some of them can’t be used for ‘important’ events like the Olamepics?
    How about they rent a couple of those channels dedicated to selling fake diamonds 24 hours a day…or maybe even a couple of those infomercial channels? Can’t the appliance-addicted crowd be expected to sacrifice a couple of measly weeks once once every four years for the greater good?
    That way those that want to watch the stoners ride their skateboards in the snow…or synchronized ice sweeping can do so to their heart’s content.

  43. BenRapistberger says: Aug 27, 2010 2:00 PM

    Oooooh, I have a better one. How am I going to choose between the Superbowl, and bowling on ice with brooms?

  44. theycallme_iPod says: Aug 27, 2010 2:07 PM

    Just move it to August.
    Boom, problem solved.
    Jeez, you guys worry about the most idiotic things…

  45. wrekOgnize says: Aug 27, 2010 2:08 PM

    Complete Fan says:
    August 27, 2010 11:56 AM
    “The smart move for the folks who run the Olympics could be to figure out the league’s plans post-haste and then adjust the dates of the Winter Games, if that’s even possible. There’s a good chance that it’s already too late to call an Olympic audible.”
    ——————– ——————– ———-
    Wow!!!!! A world-wide event giving way to a sports league that runs exclusively in the United States.
    You have really outdone yourself this time, Florio.
    ————————————————
    LOL I was thinking the same thing.

  46. KoaMisiFan says: Aug 27, 2010 2:14 PM

    Make football part of the olympics like they do basketball (yes, I know they have foreign bb teams and not fb teams like they used to — WAFL).
    Problem solved.

  47. Tcostant says: Aug 27, 2010 2:59 PM

    Who cares – Football is #1 and everyone else should get out of the way.

  48. CanadianVikingFan says: Aug 27, 2010 3:08 PM

    Olympics suck.

  49. skimbell says: Aug 27, 2010 3:23 PM

    “NFL “enhancement” could rain on Olympic parade”
    OK now quick, tell me again why I GAF about this!

  50. Stone says: Aug 27, 2010 3:54 PM

    The Winter Olympics??? Who gives a crap about the Winter Olympics??? Canada and Northern Europe? Screw the Olympics.

  51. Corey says: Aug 27, 2010 4:46 PM

    dont forget the extra bye week(s)

  52. LAEaglefan says: Aug 27, 2010 4:58 PM

    Who the hell cares about the Olympics anyway? Even those who do watch it are saddled with tape delays, with the results already being announced hours before, late night viewing schedules, and an endless stream of commercials.

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