Thursday Night package unlikely to be awarded this year

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NFL Commisioner Roger Goodell and ESPN President George Bodenheimer held a conference call Thursday to discuss ESPN’s new Monday Night Football package, among other things.

A few highlights from the call:

1. Goodell said in an answer to SI’s Richard Deitsch that the NFL didn’t anticipate a new Thursday night package of games being handed out this year.  Still, we’d be surprised if that can’t be handled in time for the 2012 season.

2. While it may have just been a trial balloon, Goodell mentioned it would be possible for the playoffs to expand after 2013. Let’s hope this idea doesn’t fly.

3. ESPN mentioned the NFL has to option to let ESPN broadcast a Wild Card game as part of the new deal, if the NFL chooses to do so.

4. The Worldwide leader really stressed the digital rights they are picking up as part of the agreement. As we know well here, digital rights is a huge part of any big sports business deal these days.

Which reminds me: SNF Extra makes a special Thursday night debut tonight, with Florio on the keyboard for a livechat.

19 responses to “Thursday Night package unlikely to be awarded this year

  1. $15 billion for ESPN alone and you geniuses are complaining about the players getting overpaid? They’re health and the shortening of their life expectancy isn’t worth much….. i guess. SMH

  2. Still not article on Al Michaels TMZ comments about Al Davis? Let’s go guys, time to grow a pair! Don’t make me go back to that 4 letter sports station for all my football news.

  3. does nobody remember what this miami team is capable of? They played 3 of the 4 teams in AFC/NFC championship last year (NYJ, GB, PITT) and essentially beat all 3 (refs blew a call on Roethlisburger fumble and pitt kicked GW FG as time expired to win by 1). I’m not denying the fact the team is somewhat of an embarrassment (Ross the owner, 1-7 at home, piped in crowd noise to prepare for home games), but this is a talented team with a great defense. Mia is a team that could win 5-6 games this year but theres also no reason they might not win 10 or 11.

  4. “Playoffs” and “expansion.”

    These words need to stay at least a paragraph apart from one another at all times.

  5. ESPN is already ruining college football with their biased coverage to garner support for the conferences that they have HUGE TV contracts as well as ESPN’s huge TV contract with the BCS.

    Keep ESPN away from the NFL!

  6. I agree the digital rights are a pretty big deal. I use ESPN3 more than ESPN or ESPN2 these days.

    If media outlets can start securing enough digital rights, I’ll probably cancel my TV subscription and just buy HD streams of the sports I want to watch – especially now that Sunday Ticket streams.

  7. aequitas83: You can only get Sunday Ticket online streaming if you subscribe to DirecTV. The exception is if you’re in one of those very few areas that can’t get satellite reception. Then they’ll sell it to you for $340 a year.

    As for expanding the playoffs….why? Two elimination games on each Saturday and Sunday is about as close to perfect as you can get. Besides, we already had one team make it with a sub-.500 record, all expanding the field would do is make it more likely that more .500 or worse teams are in the playoffs.

  8. Can someone remind Goodell this is the NFL not the NBA, I want the seachickens to be the last 7-9 playoff team for a long time

  9. Wildcard, or playoff games of any kind, on ESPN? No thank you. Keep all the important stuff on the broadcast networks.

    The NFL has a hundred ways to make an ungodly amount of money by other means. They can charge the broadcast networks and advertisers billions already. Leave something in place that suggests that the game belongs to the people, even if every other action they take says it doesn’t.

  10. No expansion! 32 teams is perfect. The divisions are balanced now. We don’t need to add teams making the playoffs. Don’t turn this in to the NBA were you have half to field in the playoffs and the playoffs last as long as the regular season.

  11. “2. While it may have just been a trial balloon, Goodell mentioned it would be possible for the playoffs to expand after 2013.”

    Probably about the time they suggest an 18 game season again. The NFL is all about money.

  12. Don’t mess with the playoffs. Don’t say it’s what the fans want like the 18 game schedule B.S. ’cause it’s not!

  13. trollhammer20: I know that. But why should I pay $100+/month for TV when I only watch sports? I’ll just drop the $300 on my PS3, use ESPN’s streaming services, and buy FSC’s streaming services. I come out well ahead.

  14. Way past time to add a 7th playoff team in each conference. The No. 1 seed earns the week off, everbody else plays.

    mrcosio, maybe you better ask the ‘Aints if the “Seachickens” belonged in the playoffs last year. 41-36 says you’re wrong.


  15. Please, ESPN shouldn’t get to have a playoff game. Everyone deserves to see the best teams in the league play for a chance @ a title. It already sucks they get MNF for the next 8 years. Cable/satellite is expensive and we’re denying many football fans the game.

    Personally I think ESPN should be a broadcast network channel now.

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