On Sunday, three games will be blacked out locally: Redskins-Lions, Titans-Chargers, and Seahawks-Raiders.
In all, the total number of blackouts has increased by 63 percent over last year at this same time, according to NFLLabor.com.
There have been 13 blackouts through the first eight weeks of the season. Last year, 22 games were blacked out over 17 weeks.
The fact that the news comes on NFLLabor.com suggests that the league believes the phenomenon has relevance to the ongoing CBA discussions. And it does, given that the NFL will point to the increased blackouts as further evidence that the league isn’t making as much money as it would like to make, justifying the notion that the slice of the pie that goes to the players needs to shrink.
That said, the growth of blackouts also tends to undermine the idea that the NFL then will make up the difference by growing the total pie.