CBS decides to exclude Rihanna from all pre-games


This is the part of the story where I’d make a pop culture reference about Rihanna using one of her song titles.

But I did that already once today, so I’m pretty much out of Rihanna material.

After the pop singer told the NFL “F— you,” on Twitter this morning, the league has returned the favor.

A CBS spokesman said any plans to re-introduce her song “Run This Town” to their Thursday Night Football open had changed, and she won’t be involved in any further broadcasts.

“Beginning this Thursday, we will be moving in a different direction with some elements of our Thursday Night Football open,” CBS senior vice president of communications Jen Sabatelle said, via USA Today. “We will be using our newly created Thursday Night Football theme music to open our game broadcast.”

The league pulled the song of the famous domestic violence victim as part of an effort to adopt a more serious tone to the Ravens-Steelers pre-game in light of the Ray Rice news of the week.

She apparently woke up this morning and realized she didn’t like it, so we await her next reaction.

62 responses to “CBS decides to exclude Rihanna from all pre-games

  1. So…pulling the song of a domestic violence VICTIM is teaching her a lesson somehow?? Wouldn’t that be a good thing to promote? To show that abuse victims can still move on and live their lives..NFL still doesn’t get it…SMDH

    Roger – you sir are an idiot

  2. Bocephus (Hank Williams Jr.) is a jerk–and he’s pretty much always been that way. That’s why he got drunk and fell off a mountain. But I sure miss “Are You Ready for Some Football?” and wish we could get back to that type opening for the games. On the one hand, the league tries to pander to women with October pink. But on the other, they’re opening games with girly shows even thought 44 percent of the fanbase is female. Hire a good band to sing the opening and forget about it.

  3. Cutting her song because she was the VICTIM of domestic abuse was pretty stupid in the first place; although if the league doesn’t understand the difference between a victim and a perpetrator, that would explain a lot wouldn’t it?

  4. “How dare you decide to do a serious report on problems plaguing the NFL instead of publicly ignoring them and playing my latest horrible pop song instead??”

  5. This is really stupid of the NFL. So because she was a victim the NFL wants nothing to do with her and excludes her completely yet they will have AD play and McDonald are playing? What does this do to help their cause about the battering of women. If anything they should have made sure Rihanna got her spot, not to punish her further for being a victim. Boy the NFL has their head up the behinds.

  6. The NFL and CBS should have banned the guy that beat up Rihanna, not Rihanna. I”m not really a fan of her music, but this was a very odd decision. More proof that the the networks and the NFL are run by out of touch conservative old white men. They (and many PFT commenters) have no clue about today’s music or the demographics of the fanbase.

  7. How about we just open the football game with a football game. Don’t need Carrie Underwood or Rihanna or HW Jr or sideline reporters or any of that fluff. Don’t need pre and post game shows that run 2X as long as the game itself. Don’t need ex-jocks reading (badly) from a prepared script. But when the product becomes increasingly mediocre you need to find ways to keep interest up and dollars flowing.

  8. If I correctly heard the lyrics and understand the body language of the video of “Run This Town”, CBS was right to pull it.

    For instance the clearest lyric out of Rhianna’s mouth is “I do my thing and I don’t care.” and the clearest gesture is to raise both her middle fingers at the camera.

    I think I understand the desired parallel CBS was trying to project between the NFL and “running the town,” but things change quickly in TV Land.

    It is a good thing that in the end CBS decided to” get serious.” But they should have never come back to the lawyers with an offer to play the song once they pulled it.

  9. What kind of audience is the NFL trying to entertain, anyway? Do they think a bunch of guys are going to sing along with this girl? I know they say 48% or something of football fans are female but I don’t believe that for a second.

  10. The NFL and CBS also announced that they would replace the Rihanna song with one of Chris Brown’s.

  11. the best part is Run This Town is a Jay-Z song, not a Rihanna song. but making it a feud between the CBS and Rihanna is a bigger headline grabber i guess. CBS never mentioned Rihanna in it’s statement, just that they were moving in a different direction. Rihanna is a drama queen and certain websites don’t know how to fact check.

  12. Do we really need these musical intros anyway? I used to like the intro music for The NFL Today or MNF when it was on ABC in the 70s and 80s. Seemed enough.

    Even the background music on NFL Films was good.

    They were all good because the focus was on the game.

  13. She sound like someone used to getting exactly what she wants whenever she damn well wants it.

  14. There is another wrinkle to this whole thing. She wasn’t just the victim of domestic abuse…she forgave and began dating him again after. I think in part the network didn’t want the headache (though honestly, I doubt it would have been much of one) of having to make football night a discussion on the cycle of abuse.

  15. So….punish the victim because you’re in bed with the NFL? That doesn’t reflect poorly at all. Nope, not one bit.

  16. They should have stayed with last year’s Thursday night intro on NFL Network with Priyanka Chopra – She was HOT!

  17. Didn’t she get back together with Chris Brown after he beat her? The league wants this type of violence not to be acceptable with there employees. Though she is a victim, she not the perfect role model for the situation. She also had a smash hit after the beating about continuing to go back to a person in an abusive relationship.

  18. Why are people on here blaming the NFL? It was CBS who made the decision, not the NFL.

    However I must concur that the NFL needs more Slayer. We need home teams pouring out of the locker room to Raining Blood. That will get the adrenaline going a lot more than some synth-pop-country song by an anorexic barbie doll.

  19. In this age of egomaniacal instant-gratification by people with itchy twitter fingers, wouldn’t we have expected her tweet sooner than FIVE DAYS later? Like, maybe sooner than five HOURS later?

    She now has vastly more publicity than if she was opening the show for the rest of the half-season. Every major and minor news outlet was shouting her name this morning.

    She’s a lot smarter than anyone here gives her credit for.

  20. I think CBS got their wires crossed. Rihanna was the VICTIM of abuse. Why is that a problem? Wouldn’t it make more sense to play her song and then have her as a guest for a two minute spot at the opening?

    Just seems like if the message was supposed to be “domestic violence is bad” then showing support and perspective from a victim would be a better more than terminating a business relationship with her.

  21. You guys still never learned from Janet Jackson 10 years ago?????

    This is what happens when you let geezers run the network. They don’t think things through when they put something “hip” on and then look worse after they try to pull a mulligan on something they should have known from the beginning!!!

  22. I’ve said it before … Motorhead should be doing the theme!

    The only game I need is Thursday Night!

    (“Ace of Spades” and “Thursday Night” even have the same syllables and cadence)

  23. I am no fan of Rhianna, in fact, she has no talent and has nothing to do with football.However, it is disgusting to drop her because she is a victim of domestic violence. No woman asks to be beat up by a man. there needs to be more sensitivity on this topic. women are so disrespected in this society.

    On the talent side, I prefer Faith Hill

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