PERCEPTION IS REALITY: Changes Are Coming in the NFL

Goodell Bisciotti

Reality: The NFL is looking to add another game to its slate of Thursday Night Football games.

Perception: John Ourand of the Sports Business Journal says the NFL is shopping a 1-year Thursday night deal to broadcast networks that would start this September. ABC/ESPN, CBS, NBC, and Fox have all made bids on the extra Thursday night game, but those bids have not been made public, so we won’t know probably until after the Super Bowl, as they get closer to releasing the full NFL schedule next year, later in April/May.

A lot of fans will take football every night of the week, but when you talk to people inside the game, they hate Thursday night football. It means the team plays on a short week. There has also been talk that the actual play on the field is not as good on Thursday nights. Plus, the NFL, supposedly all about player safety, is playing on short rest. Is that contributing to player safety?

In an email to the Bleacher Report in September 2013, NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy said:

“In 2012, the injury rate for Thursday games was 5.2 per game versus 5.3 in games played on Saturday, Sunday and Monday. Concussion rates for games played on Thursday were also similar to games played on other days. A comparison of injury information between Thursday games and games played on other days dating back to 2009 provided similar results.”

So the NFL is clearly going to defend that Thursday night games do not hurt the product or player safety.

The NFL will do whatever it needs to bring in more money. And if adding another Thursday night game will allow them to sell more ads, then they will do it. Roger Goodell also said this week, that with adding 2 more playoff teams, they may look at playing that extra playoff game on Friday or Monday night. As long as the NFL continues to rule, we are going to see the NFL spread its wings with their schedule.

Reality: The CBS Pre-Game show is looking to make some changes next year.

Perception: The USA Today reported last week that CBS is disappointed with the ratings of their NFL Pre Game show which fell further behind Fox in the ratings. So how do you fix it? A shake-up of course.

“The NFL Today” on CBS has been James Brown, Dan Marino, Bill Cowher, Shannon Sharpe, and Boomer Esiason for a number of years now. Word is that CBS would love to bring in newly retired Tony Gonzalez to replace Sharpe. However, Gonzalez and Sharpe are really close friends, so would Gonzalez do that to a friend? And if they just add Gonzalez, is six people too many for a 1-hour pre-game show? They may want to replace Marino, but do they want to replace him with another quarterback? They have Boomer, so they may not need another QB, but they probably still want a former player. Maybe Peyton Manning (if he retires) could be on the radar. Perhaps they were eyeing Rex Ryan, whose job was thought to be on the line, before he signed an extension earlier this month – now that would have been good TV!

Reality: NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell is looking to getting rid of extra points in the NFL.

Perception: Goodell said only 5 extra points were missed out of over 1,200 attempts. According to WJZ’s Mark Viviano, the Ravens are 593 of 595 in their PAT kick history. They only have 2 extra point misses in their existence… Matt Stover in 1996 against St. Louis and (current Seahawks kicker) Steven Hauschka in 2009 against Cleveland. Hauschka was cut after that game.

Goodell also said he wants “to add excitement with every play” and clearly there is no excitement in the extra point. One proposal suggests 7 points for a touchdown. You can try for an 8th point by either running or passing the ball in an “extra point” situation, but if you fail you go back to only getting 6 points.

If you want to make it more challenging and therefore feed Goodell’s need for more excitement, why not just back it up? Move the line of scrimmage for extra points back to the 23-yard line and make it a 40-yard attempt?

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About Joe Polek

Joe Polek
Joe Polek was born in Baltimore, MD, and was raised in Bel Air, MD. In 2001, he moved to Portland, Maine for a job in radio. In 2012, he moved to Columbia, SC for another gig in radio, where he currently resides with his wife, Nicole, and their two daughters....more

15 Raves on “PERCEPTION IS REALITY: Changes Are Coming in the NFL

  1. gongspray on said:

    CBS should try a different format not different people. The cookie cutter panel with middle of the road commentary is overdone and not interesting.

    • Charles Bowman on said:

      That’s exactly why I don’t watch any pre-game shows. Plus they are basically for the non-fan, you won’t be gleaming any new information on game day.

      • Greg on said:

        yep, they are horrendous.

        I’m amazed That FOX does so much better – their panel is far worse IMO. Bradshaw is funny in the way that a person that everyone knows is an idiot is funny. Their anchor isn’t as good as James Brown and the rest of the crew is massively boring.

        Shannon SHarpe is the only reason to watch the CBS show IMO and they want to cut him? dumb.

  2. Timpo on said:

    Ill never understand when someone says that football isnt exciting enough so lets do something random like get rid of the extra point. The whole thing about extra points is an extra chance for the point to be scored or denied by the defense but it also gives a change for fakes, mistakes and all other types of competitive junk.
    Blarg. At that point why even have a place kicker or special teams anything? just put the ball somewhere and hike it.
    Man that would be pretty boring.. but then again when they moved the kickoff spot I was annoyed as well.

  3. Chad on said:

    No matter what Fox or CBS does it will not be able to compete with the NFL Network pregame. They have the perfect panel and I love what they do thoughout the pregame. I find myself at the tailgate watching their pregame than doing actual tailgating. Great show you can watch for hours.

  4. Steve G on said:

    Do this. Move the place kick 20 yards back from the point at which the ball passed the goal line and kick from there. So for example, if the ball is run in near the corner pylon, the extra point is taken from the sideline – at 20 yards. Much more of a challenge than form the hash marks.

  5. Hollywoodheiz on said:

    Regardless of the network I’m hoping that if the Broncos win the Super Bowl the Thursday night opener would be in Baltimore. I’m sure their owner, front office and coach wouldn’t mind. And perhaps a concert in Denver ( thinking Jamican reggee band) would be enough to satisfy their fans.
    Then again, the Super Bowl Champion always opens at home, right?
    Now I’m going to go outside and practice making my snowball chance in hell.
    Have a great day.

    • Matt on said:

      Ravens played away first game this season. They had to give up their home game because the Baltimore Orioles were also playing at home. I’d rather watch football.

      • Anonymous on said:

        Thinking the game could have been moved to Wednesday. No Orioles game that night and the previous NFL season started on a Wednesday night. I too would have rather watched football, in M&T Bank stadium.

  6. dc369 on said:

    If they want to change the extra point, eliminate the kick and make like the current two point conversion. You have to move the ball over the goal line by pass or run.

  7. MARK on said:

    CBS used to have the best pre game show in the business..when they had brent mussburger and irv cross and jimmy the greek..there was nothing in the world on a sunday that compared to..YOU ARE LOOKING LIVE….but sadly..those days have moved on and long since past..i do think however..that they could revive the old theme fro back then as part of any shuffling of the deck they may do..the current same ole generic theme stinks..and the cookie cutter style that was previously mentioned is also overdone..none better than ESPN right now..chris berman and tom Jackson have been together for over 25 years..they have a great chemistry and it shows..never like FOX’S coverage of pre game or actual game quite frnkly..the announcers were always better on NBC and later CBS..unless it was Summeral and Madden..who were the best in the business..

  8. Russ on said:

    My proposal is either a conversion from the 2 yard line…as it is today or a drop kick (no place kick allowed) with the ball snapped from the 15 yard line. Both worth 2 pts.

  9. Greg on said:

    The problem with the pre-game shows is that they are the EXHIBIT A for the out-moded and antiquated ways of thinking about the game. Every Sunday you hear the same nonsense that anyone could argue, even a fairweather fan. Gotta give (insert star RB) carries. This game will come down to (highly important Quarterback that team relies on). Defense will be big.

    Its an hour of cliches over and over. They’re not even smart enough to say anything different – its not like the execs are handcuffing them. THEY DONT KNOW ANYTHING ELSE. They have hall of famers up there and SB winning coaches and I guarantee you could grab 5 analytically minded writers from NFL blogs who would do a MUCH better job of delivering real analysis.

  10. steve on said:

    how about letting them play it like a two point conversion. then they have the option to either run it or pass it. I think the two point conversion would add a lot of excitement and the scoring team would actually have to run a real football play to receive the bonus point. just a thought.

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