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Expansion of Thursday football requires fairness in scheduling

guilt-free-thanksgiving_getty Getty Images

When the 2012 regular-season schedule lands at 7:00 p.m. ET, one of the first things I’ll check is the slate of Thursday games, including the trio of Thanksgiving games.  With expanded use of the short week, it’s important to ensure that the teams that play in games with limited preparation get a fair shake to prepare.

That includes, as the league has done recently, ensuring that the road team for a Thursday game plays a home game the prior Sunday, resulting in only one travel obligation.  Ideally, the home team for the Thursday games will have played on the road the prior Sunday, meaning that each team will have to use some of the limited time to get ready for the game traveling.

Of course, the best approach would be to have teams play on Thursdays after a bye week, giving them a shortened bye on the front end and a shortened bye on the back end — and end result of playing only one time in the 20-day stretch between Sunday games.

We’ll know within three hours how it all shakes out for 2012, and we’ll break it all down right here.  Until then, here’s some more chatter about the Thursday night dynamic from PFT Live.

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16 Responses to “Expansion of Thursday football requires fairness in scheduling”
  1. largent80 says: Apr 17, 2012 4:36 PM

    I’ll set the over/under on number of Jets games *not* scheduled for primetime at 6.5.

  2. jfd349 says: Apr 17, 2012 4:39 PM

    The NFL also should not make a west coast team play an east coast opponent on the Thursday night game, either.

  3. champsb3233 says: Apr 17, 2012 4:51 PM

    Make the road team travel no more than one time zone. No way Philadelphia should have played at Seattle or San Francisco at Baltimore on a short week last year.

  4. Joey Sichol says: Apr 17, 2012 4:56 PM

    Thursday games are usually crappy. The short week means that the product suffers. Scheduling games around teams’ bye weeks is the only way to go… Unless my team is playing, I rarely care about the Thursday games. I’d much rather see Saturday night games than Thursday games. Both intrude on college ball…

  5. AlanSaysYo says: Apr 17, 2012 4:56 PM

    “Of course, the best approach would be to have teams play on Thursdays after a bye week, giving them a shortened bye on the front end and a shortened bye on the back end — and end result of playing only one time in the 20-day stretch between Sunday games.”

    A team playing on a Thursday after a bye would have had a shortened bye on the front end and an extended time until its next game on the back end.

  6. billsin20xx says: Apr 17, 2012 5:03 PM

    I think that they should make sure the schedule always have teams on byes playing another bye team the week after. It never seemed fair to play a team that had two weeks to prepare for a game, especially having to play against a coach like belichek with the extra week.

  7. champsb3233 says: Apr 17, 2012 5:07 PM

    Peter King: Steelers at Broncos in Week 1 Sunday night opener.

  8. goodluckking says: Apr 17, 2012 5:31 PM

    That includes, as the league has done recently, ensuring that the road team for a Thursday game plays a home game the prior Sunday, resulting in only one travel obligation. Ideally, the home team for the Thursday games will have played on the road the prior Sunday, meaning that each team will have to use some of the limited time to get ready for the game traveling.

    These rules do not apply to the Dallas Cowboys. As they are home the week before Thanskgiving about 85% of the time since they have held a traditional Turkey Day game.

  9. cali49er707 says: Apr 17, 2012 5:35 PM

    just another “CASH GRAB” for the league to get everyone to get the NFL network & to get the t.v.’s of all the remaining fanbases to tune in
    so much for player safety when you have to teams smashing each other after playing just the sunday before

  10. southbeachnorth says: Apr 17, 2012 5:48 PM

    Who cares about the Jets? That team as a whole is tabloid .

  11. beeronthefridge says: Apr 17, 2012 5:50 PM

    The Northwestern College football team – a rag tag bunch of amateurs – played not one, but two football games on Oct. 8, 2005, winning both.(1)

    Why are these pros moaning and whining about Thursday night games?

    (1)
    12 p.m. | Northwestern def. Trinity Bible, 59-0
    7 p.m. | Northwestern def. Macalester, 47-17

  12. andrejohnsonforpresident says: Apr 17, 2012 5:52 PM

    Say what you want about my comment but that frozen picture of bucs stadium is why I live in FL. See that sky? I enjoy that 90% of the year all year round. Only vacations i’ll ever take are gonna be to California, or out of country!!

  13. rayguyreturns says: Apr 17, 2012 6:42 PM

    Agree on the time zone should only be a max. of only one zone away.
    The NFL stuck the Raiders with a road game on Sunday and then they had to fly back and play Tennessee that same Thursday when Eddie George was in his prime.

    And you wonder why Raider fans believe in conspiracy theories?

  14. jikkle49 says: Apr 17, 2012 6:51 PM

    Schedule teams within one time zone within each other as someone mentioned and the road team has a home game beforehand and I think that would be fair.

    Coast to coast games on that short of a week is just way too unfair for the road team and unfair to us fans who typically watch a flat performance out there.

  15. applecool1981 says: Apr 18, 2012 2:05 AM

    Joey Sichol says: Apr 17, 2012 4:56 PM

    “Thursday games are usually crappy. The short week means that the product suffers. Scheduling games around teams’ bye weeks is the only way to go… Unless my team is playing, I rarely care about the Thursday games. I’d much rather see Saturday night games than Thursday games. Both intrude on college ball…”

    ——————————————————————————————————–

    Once ESPN lost the rights to the Sunday night game, they began having NCAA Football games on Sunday nights opposing NFL Football. The NCAA can’t have it both ways/

  16. lionsdetroitcom says: Apr 23, 2012 6:58 PM

    The Jets shouldn’t even be shown on NY TV.

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