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Thursday night package could create $700 million in annual revenue

Thursday-Night--Football-B

The NFL won’t be playing more Thursday night games.  But the NFL will be making more money for the Thursday night games it plays.

According to John Ourand of SportsBusiness Journal, the league could sell an eight-game package to an outside network by 2015 or 2016.

The games, per Ourand, could fetch up to $700 million per year.

To get to eight games being exported, the league would expand the total Thursday and Saturday package to 16 games, leaving eight on NFLN.  The deal also could include a wild-card game — which likely would come from the two new wild-card games that would arise from an expansion of the postseason to 14 teams.

Networks believed to be interested in the package include Turner, NBCSN, and FS1.  ESPN, which pays nearly $2 billion per year for Monday Night Football and has a full inventory of college football rights, would gain little by adding Thursday night NFL games, since the monthly subscription fee likely wouldn’t increase much higher than it already is.

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56 Responses to “Thursday night package could create $700 million in annual revenue”
  1. anicra says: Oct 24, 2013 6:19 PM

    Crazy to think the NFL is Tax-Exempt.

  2. skittlesareyum says: Oct 24, 2013 6:20 PM

    ESPN, which pays nearly $2 billion per year for Monday Night Football and has a full inventory of college football rights, would gain little by adding Thursday night NFL games, since the monthly subscription fee likely wouldn’t increase much higher than it already is.

    ——————————-

    But couldn’t they charge higher advertising rates during the Thursday game than the show it replaces?

  3. bennyb82 says: Oct 24, 2013 6:21 PM

    I picture Goodell doing his best Bart Scott impression right now…”Can’t Wait!”

  4. dohpey28 says: Oct 24, 2013 6:22 PM

    Actually the biggest bidder might be someone like google or even apple.

  5. stuartscottslazyeyeball says: Oct 24, 2013 6:23 PM

    Do you like things like punts? Kickoffs? Blitzes and blocks….penalties?

  6. thestrategyexpert says: Oct 24, 2013 6:24 PM

    Yeah but those ESPN bullies could think it’s fun to pay money just so those other guys can’t have any. But tis the season to be sharing so let one of those small fries jump in for a piece of the action. Happy bidding and congrats to the network that wants it the most!

  7. ratsfoiledagain says: Oct 24, 2013 6:26 PM

    Thursday night games are okay. Not great. I’d rather see MNF go back to ABC but, the devil (ESPN) won’t allow it.

  8. serkeljerks says: Oct 24, 2013 6:26 PM

    They need to keep it at 8 games or fewer. Bring the games in on the tail end of the season not the beginning.

  9. wallio says: Oct 24, 2013 6:27 PM

    The ratings are in the toliet because they’re on cable. Why wouldnt a real network make a bid? Your guaranteed to win the timeslot…

  10. thetooloftools says: Oct 24, 2013 6:28 PM

    “ESPN, which pays nearly $2 billion per year for Monday Night Football”.
    This can’t possibly be accurate.

  11. oilcandroid says: Oct 24, 2013 6:29 PM

    The league is clearly strapped for cash

  12. Paul says: Oct 24, 2013 6:29 PM

    How about no Thursday games at all, leaving the postseason alone, and zero games each year in London? I’m not typically one of those “I hate change” curmudgeons, but Roger Gooddell has dollar signs in his eyes and no regard for the health of the league itself.

  13. mackcarrington says: Oct 24, 2013 6:31 PM

    WOW! If I was a player I would be so excited about getting a piece of that!!!!
    ….. But wait a minute…. they aren’t raising the salary cap any, so the players won’t be seeing any of that revenue. It’s all going into the pockets of the owners.

  14. Go-Hawks! says: Oct 24, 2013 6:31 PM

    The playoffs are just fine right now. Actually they are about as good as you can get for a 32 team league. There is symmetry and you rarely have inferior teams making it passed the second round.

    My Seahawks led the NFC Worst to a 7 and 9 playoff birth in which they hosted the 11-5 Saints and won. They went on to lose to the Bears that year on a snowy Chicago day. As a lifelong Seahawks fan, I was happy to see my team make it to the playoffs. But it’s a rare thing for losing teams to make it to the playoffs.

    I don’t know how you include more teams in the playoffs without having more losing teams in the playoffs. Yes, most years you wouldn’t have to deal with it. But, there will be more years with teams that have losing records in the playoffs. And that is a bad thing. Why don’t you change it to a best of 3 playoff system while your at it.. smh

  15. Deb says: Oct 24, 2013 6:33 PM

    The NFL won’t be playing more Thursday night games.

    Just so long as they’re not playing fewer. I’ve gotten used to having football four days a week (including Saturday’s college lineup) and don’t want to go backward. As long as the NFL sells the package to a network that’s readily available through my basic cable or sports package, I’m good. (Although my female friends don’t understand why I have so many scheduling issues with their baby and bridal showers ;) )

  16. harrycanyon says: Oct 24, 2013 6:35 PM

    Best thing they could do for Thurs night games is get rid of the NFL Network. Put them on a station most of your fans can (or choose to) get. That one game alone on a real network would be plenty for a thurs night.

  17. thebiblestudent says: Oct 24, 2013 6:36 PM

    Expanding the playoffs? Did I miss something?

  18. dkrause71 says: Oct 24, 2013 6:36 PM

    Maybe the NFL could have executions at halftime for even more revenue.

    I get you want to grow your brand but at some point enough is enough. Stop whoring out the game to England, trying to add a 18 game schedule and 2 more playoff teams.

  19. tharoostah says: Oct 24, 2013 6:36 PM

    What you left out of this is advertising dollars. The NFL will make 700,000,000 – (x – y)
    Where: X= advertising dollars currently earned for Thursday night games, Y= advertising dollars that will be earned on Thursday night regulare (nongame programing).

    And ESPN wouldn’t but it to increase subscription fees they would buy it to increase the amount they can charge for Thursaday night programing.

    Not to mention the $$$ the NFLN will save by not having 30 guys in half time booth

  20. byzr says: Oct 24, 2013 6:36 PM

    700 million for the “not for profit” NFL league… haha

  21. bennyb82 says: Oct 24, 2013 6:41 PM

    I bet Comcast pays ESPN/ABC a lot of money to keep MNF on cable.

  22. bennyb82 says: Oct 24, 2013 6:45 PM

    I am totally against playoff expansion because that means my Lions will likely have to lose one more game so they do not get in.

  23. jrebar88 says: Oct 24, 2013 6:45 PM

    The only way that these Thursday night games will work, is if both teams are coming off of a bye week.

  24. cheapglazers says: Oct 24, 2013 6:45 PM

    This all sounds bad. The dumbest part of all these terrible ideas is to allow half of the league to make the postseason. Wtf?

  25. guitarmaninks says: Oct 24, 2013 6:46 PM

    Tax exempt is misleading . . . Everyone involved that makes money in any way is taxed on their earnings.

  26. joeyashwi says: Oct 24, 2013 6:50 PM

    Roger Goodell: Please see housing bubble….

    This deal will affect everybody. Watch your cable TV and satellite rates go up now even if you don’t have the NFL network. It isn’t advertising dollars alone that pay these ridiculous deals, it’s every consumer out there. I love football but I hate how watered down the league has become. I honestly watch less football now than I did when it was just Sunday and Monday. It’s gone from an event to being as special as a baseball game. Miss a game? Oh well, there will be another tomorrow…
    And why should it take three and a half hours to watch a one hour game? The whole thing will come crashing down in the next fifteen years. Growth just for the sake of growth cannot be sustained.

  27. vegasgreek says: Oct 24, 2013 6:55 PM

    This is a smart idea. The NFL should let a team like the Raiders with a marquee name and long history move to LA and fore sake playing in London and make a deal with the city of Rome , Italy to fix up the Roman Coliseum and play NFL Games there. They call Pro Football a GLADIATOR SPORT so why not play in the most historic arena in the world.

  28. harrisonhits2 says: Oct 24, 2013 6:57 PM

    Just raw greed by people who already have more money than they could spend in 10 lifetimes.

    And we’ve already seen that Thursday games early in the season are a terrible product with some of the worst play ever seen at the NFL level. The players, especially rookies, just don’t have enough time on a 3 day turn around early in the season when they don’t have the systems down yet.

    NGL = National Greed League

  29. upperdecker19 says: Oct 24, 2013 6:58 PM

    Think I’d rather watch CSI – Fargo, North Dakota than some of these Monday and Thursday matchups.

  30. logicalvoiceseys says: Oct 24, 2013 7:02 PM

    Yea I’m not too excited for the expansion of the playoffs, I feel it’s fine as it is. I guess that lost revenue of getting rid of the 4th preseason game has to be replaced somehow though. I still think a rookie vs sophmore game could help.

  31. steelersaregodsteam says: Oct 24, 2013 7:09 PM

    That’s all that matters — right?

  32. rdillage says: Oct 24, 2013 7:10 PM

    Just my opinion but Thursday night football waters down the NFL, unless its my team playing I don’t watch. Having Thursday games all season sucks and now they are going to have more? Goodall you are way too greedy, enough is enough

  33. clwb419 says: Oct 24, 2013 7:18 PM

    Wouldn’t that mean that there are 7 games that are taken away from existing contracts, and thus reducing the payout from the existing networks?

  34. 1rockyracoon says: Oct 24, 2013 7:20 PM

    The games on the NFL Network are almost too painful to watch. The quality of the broadcast is so inferior to the other channels.

  35. bosshoghussla says: Oct 24, 2013 7:24 PM

    mackcarrington,

    Couldn’t be more incorrect. The profit share will still be the same percentage of total revenue, therefore the extra money will likely go into the NFLPA disability and retirement funds.

    Or more likely, Demaurice Smith’s pocket

  36. crik911 says: Oct 24, 2013 7:28 PM

    mackcarrington says: Oct 24, 2013 6:31 PM

    WOW! If I was a player I would be so excited about getting a piece of that!!!!
    ….. But wait a minute…. they aren’t raising the salary cap any, so the players won’t be seeing any of that revenue. It’s all going into the pockets of the owners.

    —————————–

    Fancy that, people investing amazing amounts of money and getting a return on investment! Almost like its a business or something?

    700 million divided by all the active players on each roster is only around 400k each, less taxes (depending on state levels) they are lucky to see half of that.

    When Wal-Mart makes more money do they raise employee’s wages? No, they invest it into buildings or infrastructure, or perhaps equipment. Much like your favorite Pro Team does.

  37. gdeli says: Oct 24, 2013 7:45 PM

    ron burgundy’s son is pictured. lmao

  38. jeffa43 says: Oct 24, 2013 7:57 PM

    Don’t want to bring politics into this, but it sure feels that way…

    Majority of football fans do not want more playoff teams..

    Goodell is telling us what we like.

  39. doctorrustbelt says: Oct 24, 2013 8:00 PM

    LOL…. tax exempt.

  40. thereisfootballwestofjersey says: Oct 24, 2013 8:22 PM

    The beatings will continue until moral improves!

  41. stonefish67 says: Oct 24, 2013 8:27 PM

    Pure greed.
    The NFL and their BS about being concerned about player safety.
    HAHAHAHAHAH. Concerned about lawsuits.
    Thursday night games, is terrible for the recovery from games four days prior.

  42. briang123 says: Oct 24, 2013 8:39 PM

    The NFL might be tax-exempt, but the 32 teams that make up the league certainly are not. When that TV money is distributed, rest assured Uncle Sam and the states are getting their “fair share.” I’m sure the people that actually think that the NFL pockets this money tax-free are the same people that can’t understand why fast food joints don’t just pay their workers $25 an hour and think that the only thing th government needs to do to eliminate poverty is spend more money on it.

  43. theravenlives2 says: Oct 24, 2013 8:50 PM

    The NFL might be tax-exempt, but the 32 teams that make up the league certainly are not. When that TV money is distributed, rest assured Uncle Sam and the states are getting their “fair share.” I’m sure the people that actually think that the NFL pockets this money tax-free are the same people that can’t understand why fast food joints don’t just pay their workers $25 an hour and think that the only thing th government needs to do to eliminate poverty is spend more money on it.

    ==============================

    Bingo! Good post!

  44. justintuckrule says: Oct 24, 2013 9:11 PM

    Heck…just expand the playoffs to all 32 teams. Everyone’s gonna watch right roger? Make those $$$.

    People need to wake up and tune OUT!!! He’s killing the league!

  45. rocketcrab says: Oct 24, 2013 9:24 PM

    Let’s see……….tuned in tonight’s Thursday night matchup, Carolina vs Tampa Bay. Watched for a while………dreadful. Switched to NBCSN and Toronto vs Winnipeg. Entertaining. Competitive. Hmmmmmmmm……

  46. sportsguy3434 says: Oct 24, 2013 9:35 PM

    So it will take less than approximately a year and a half of simply rearranging games to pay the 20 year $765M concussion settlement. Amazing.

    If they want more eyeballs on football games put more than one double header on cable on Sunday afternoons and quit putting Monday and Thursday games on paid channels. But I know…it is about the dollar$…

  47. mackcarrington says: Oct 24, 2013 10:04 PM

    @crik911:
    I understand that the owners have the right to pocket as much money as they want, but comparing the NFL to Walmart is quite a stretch. When Walmart gets a salary cap, then you might have a fair comparison.

  48. redskinsrt says: Oct 25, 2013 12:58 AM

    “But couldn’t they charge higher advertising rates during the Thursday game than the show it replaces?”

    8 games… 700 mil… trust me… theyre gettjng nowhere near 90ish mil per game in advertising

  49. lawyermalloy says: Oct 25, 2013 5:17 AM

    @dophey
    What in the hell would Apple or Google bid for Thursday Night games? are they in the sports production business?

  50. yooperman says: Oct 25, 2013 7:26 AM

    When did they start playing NFL football on Thursday? That’s the night high school JV’s play.

  51. bcgreg says: Oct 25, 2013 7:36 AM

    I HATE Thursday Night Football with a passion.

  52. hodag54501 says: Oct 25, 2013 7:39 AM

    The NFL is nuts because the fans are nuts. Few of you give a crap that all this marketing baloney the NFL is attempting is because they want more money at the expense of player safety. Yet the issue of player safety won’t go away. Giving players three days to prepare for a game(after a likely tough game on Sunday) belies the notion that the NFL is concerned about player safety. That isn’t enough recovery time for the veterans.
    They send players overseas(more coming as you see) which is draining, make them play more on three days rest, add playoff games.
    Then they get sued by permanently injured ex-players and “settle out of court” so as not to pay more before a jury.
    Then I look at the owners, most of whom are simply the elites hoping to pad their pockets at the expense of the players.
    Maybe it’s time for the fans to wake up and realize you are driving this insanity. Not the league, but you, will have the pain on your hands as more players get hurt. You are driving this insanity.
    Football is becoming the Roman Coliseum.
    I’m getting to the point where football means less to me than baseball and basketball.
    After reading about Mike Webster’s life and seeing this past weekend with Jermichael Finley’s near paralyzing accident, pro football is becoming a real life bloodbath and the fans are becoming the vampires.

  53. davicusmaximus says: Oct 25, 2013 8:28 AM

    So that’s why they floated that story last week about the extra Thursday game. Classic marketing technique.

    How about NO.

  54. sb44champs says: Oct 25, 2013 8:46 AM

    stonefish67 says:
    Oct 24, 2013 8:27 PM
    Pure greed.
    The NFL and their BS about being concerned about player safety.
    HAHAHAHAHAH. Concerned about lawsuits.
    Thursday night games, is terrible for the recovery from games four days prior.
    =========================
    EXACTLY, Goodell is the biggest hypocrite when it comes to player safety..

  55. 23rdusernameused says: Oct 25, 2013 8:51 AM

    “nearly $2 billion per year for Monday Night Football”

    WOW, just WOW!!

  56. lionsplayoffs says: Oct 25, 2013 10:24 AM

    My favorite time slot of the week to watch an NFL game is Sunday night. It beats Thursdays and MNF.

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