Posted February 05, 2014

CBS lands rights to NFL’s Thursday Night Football package

NFL media
CBS will broadcast eight early season Thursday night games; NFL Network will handle late-season games.

CBS will broadcast eight early season Thursday night games; NFL Network will handle late-season games. (Bob Leverone/AP)

Thursday Night Football is coming to broadcast television.

In early January, a report emerged that the NFL had begun shopping a one-year contract for its midweek game. Turner, FOX and NBC were all mentioned as possible landing spots, but the NFL’s long-time broadcast partner CBS beat out the competition, the NFL announced Wednesday morning.

“NFL Network built Thursday into a night for NFL fans,” said Commissioner Roger Goodell. “Our goal is to bring these games to more fans on broadcast television with unprecedented promotion and visibility for Thursday Night Football on CBS.”

The deal calls for CBS to air eight Thursday night games early in the season, with the NFL Network broadcasting eight late in the season. The package will also include a double-header in Week 16, though the destination for those games is still unclear. As reported earlier, the deal spans just the 2014 season, with the NFL holding an option for a second year. The New York Times reported that the deal is believed to be worth at least $250 million.

Jim Nantz and Phil Simms will anchor CBS’ broadcast, and that will become their primary focus, with each receiving a few Sundays off during the season, per the Times.

“The NFL is the most powerful programming in television,” said Sean McManus, chairman for CBS Sports. “To add a primetime NFL package to our successful Sunday AFC package further strengthens our position in the sports marketplace.”

62 comments
docdavidbanner
docdavidbanner

Wish the rumor had been true and Google had jumped into the fray.


nathan l
nathan l

Thursday night football is lame. 

PurpleCity52
PurpleCity52

I was hoping they do away with Thursday Night Football and just do a double header on Monday Night Football one east coast game and one west coast game.. I don't like when my team (Ravens) plays Sunday then Thursday vs a team fresh off a bye week!?

Fifilo
Fifilo

More watered down NFL gruel.

RocketMan2000
RocketMan2000

What is the over/under on the number of times Nantz will utter the words "green jacket" during each broadcast?

SHOGUN
SHOGUN

mayock and nessler were great on Thursdays - gotta listen to simms and nantz? does any one actually like these 2? they're terrible

kenc29
kenc29

Players could use less short-week games. Give em a break, the season is long enough as it is without regular Thursday nite games.

mishmosh2000
mishmosh2000

Great news.  Many don't have cable and the NFL Network.  This is good news!  

KeysSteven
KeysSteven

When NBC out-bids Fox for NFC slate, that'll be news.  This, ahhh, Thusday night & football, it ain't oil & vinegar exactly but it's not beer & pretzels either, no matter what the Suits want.  Course, if NFL ever takes us fans seriously and fills it with watchable competition, maybe I'll invest a few brewskis.  

riley8
riley8

Why not have football 365 days a year?  The players won't get hurt right Roger?

Sizzle
Sizzle

NFL doesn't care for the health of the players as three days is not to recover from Sunday games. With Goodell and the owners, it's all about the $$$.

ILoveMyWife
ILoveMyWife

Great except for the Phil Simms part.

MichaelWallis1
MichaelWallis1

Does this mean CBS will have to move their popular shows on Thursday night like Two and a Half Men, Big Bang Theory and Elementary? It probably would have benefited NBC more to have Thursday night Football instead seeing that they don't have much to offer on television anymore on Thursday nights like they used to.

parkbrav
parkbrav

This is awesome and I will definitely try to tune in to the Thursday night games. I think CBS does an AWESOME job of covering the NFL

donald5
donald5

I must be in the minority because once Monday night raps up, I need a few days off from football.  I'm guessing they did their marketing research and this will be a money maker regardless.

CobyPreimesberger
CobyPreimesberger

and the exact deal is cbs covers the first 8 but it will also be simulcast on nfl network, with nfl network personalties sprinkled in pre and post and then week 11 the package switches to nfl network, with week 16 having 3 games, the tursday night and then doubleheader saturday which is where nessler and mayock likely annoonunce the 2nd game

clt0002
clt0002

I love all of this except the announcing crew. 

Ray1950
Ray1950

One game a week with "Hello Friends" Nantz and Phil Simms wasn't enough?  The absolute thrill of not being subjected to Motormouth Mayock has been diluted by the fact that the overexposed Nantz will be on. I was hoping CBS would use Ian Eagle and Dan Fouts.

PackersFanNumeroUno
PackersFanNumeroUno

Very sweet. Cut cable and went with the netflix and the hd antenna. They prob did this so I could watch my Packers on Thursday now. Thx Rog

burt.doug
burt.doug

no more Mike Mayock....that's the best thing for me.....he's a terrible announcer, he'll still be on the Irish broadcasts but I never watch those...

Wisconsin Death Trip
Wisconsin Death Trip

The more and more "The Commish" opens his mouth, The more I feel like we're dealing with a mafia boss. 

WilyCoyoteSuperGenius
WilyCoyoteSuperGenius

In truth Thursday night football has been a major flop for the NFL, as has their network. That is why they had to go shop it elsewhere. No one was watching the games. The NFL is getting desperate to continue to grow revenues, but I suspect they have pretty much tapped out the market. Ticket prices are maxed out and if you ain't watching now, you are not likely to start because you can watch on Thursday night. The fact that the NFL was not trumpeting the dollar amount attached to this deal tells me that it was nowhere near the $800 million figure they floated when they went shopping.

sunalsorises
sunalsorises

Please stop trying to create more football.  If you want to create more watching opportunities don't enter exclusive deals with Directv and let fans watch their team.

DanAyd
DanAyd

Cord cutters rejoice! NFL really remains the last bastion of professional or collegiate team sports on broadcast television.

Rax
Rax

Probably all 8 will be Patriots games. We get to hear Nantz write love letters to Tom Brady and we get to see a dozen shots of Bob Kraft and whatever celebrity is in his owner's box.

StuTuton
StuTuton

Now we get two games/week of Nantz and Simms.  I do not mind Simms, but Nantz can put people to sleep during the Super Bowl.

trbmb
trbmb

If Goodell gets his way, given he loves the fans deeply,   there will be an NFL game on every night of the year.   Goodell also loves suckers.

clt0002
clt0002

@MichaelWallis1  I'm sure they thought the same which is why they placed a bid. They just lost. I'm glad bc I like Parks and Rec on Thursdays. It's a great show. And honestly, it would benefit any network to have the NFL in its lineup. 

justsomeguy
justsomeguy

@donald5 Lots of people complain about it but ultimately still watch it, so we're stuck with it.  If you're watching the product the league couldn't care less what you think about it.

Robert007
Robert007

@donald5  That is what Tuesday and Wednesday are for! Thats a few days...

clt0002
clt0002

@Ray1950  I love Mike Mayock. He might talk a lot but he only talks about football. His teaming with Brad Nesler has been great. I think the NFL network is okay with the amount of talking he does bc NFL network games tend to be a little slow and sometimes blowouts since the teams aren't the top pick each week. 

IndependentsDay
IndependentsDay

@PackersFanNumeroUno  I just did the same thing, but with Roku too.  I love it.  Even if they hadn't moved it to CBS, always ways to watch every NFL game for *ahem* free.

Ray1950
Ray1950

@burt.doug  I agree on Mayock.  I had to stop watching the Irish broadcasts because Mayock was diving me crazy.

IanBlack
IanBlack

@WilyCoyoteSuperGenius  You are wrong about no one watching... During the MLB Playoffs a lousy Thursday Night NFL game outdrew an NLCS match-up. NFL is KING on TV.

justsomeguy
justsomeguy

@WilyCoyoteSuperGenius Do you have any facts whatsoever to back this up?  Every one I've seen is the exact opposite.  The ratings don't need to beat Sundays, they just need to compete with whatever else is on Thursdays, which they do.


The money on this deal along doesn't tell the whole story.  A large point of Thursday night games was to get people to buy into the NFL network.  Nobody cared about it before then, but now all the major carriers have it.  Now that they've got us paying a dollar or two a month for it they pull a chunk of the only thing people watch on it, but of course everyone keeps paying, because they don't realize/care/pay attention to how cable rights fees work.  Now the NFL gets money from cable subscribers for the network, as well as CBS for the package itself.

TomPeregoy
TomPeregoy

Wrong just saw the deal 1.2 Billion CBS is paying NFL an CBS was the one looking for the deal.An Thursday night football on the NFL network.made 1.5 Billion this past year. plus Fox sports is trying for for the 8 game for over a Billion

Rickapolis
Rickapolis

@trbmb  Yep.I was going to predict what network gets the Tuesday night games.  We'll have them by 2017. 

donald5
donald5

@justsomeguy @donald5  I have no delusion that they care what I think and made no comment to that effect.  I made no complaint about it either.  Simply saying I need a few days off is not a complaint about the fact that it is being shown.  I was simply saying that I don't watch NFL on Thursday even though we have the channel (came with the package).  

burt.doug
burt.doug

@clt0002 @Ray1950might talk a lot he never shuts up...and he analyzes every play to death, in in all that verbal diaherra is a lot of bull....he just goes on and on, so he gives you no time to question it...and it appears he knows what he is talking about...he is a "draft guru" enough said, he likes to think he knows what he is talking about he's the same as Kiper do I want him in the booth no?/...Mayock should be a halftime guy and thats it

nuss25
nuss25

@clt0002 @Ray1950Mayock - He.Talks.After.Every.Play. Enough already.

Simms is no better - and the next time he tells me something I don't already know or didn't just see, it will be the first time. 

Not sure if you guys remember the NBC game years ago that they did with no announcers. I thought it was pretty cool and with improved audio/video technology it would be even better today.

clt0002
clt0002

@nuss25 @clt0002 @Ray1950  Yeah ESPN showed the NCAA national championship game with no announcers on one network. It was pretty cool. Idk I think I'm in the minority on Mayock.