01 February 2016

CBS, NBC & NFL Network to split Thursday Night Football package

After much anticipation, the NFL has announced the new Thursday Night Football package as joining CBS and NFL Network will be NBC, as first reported by the great John Ourand. It will see CBS and NBC splitting an expanded ten game schedule while NFL Network will exclusively broadcast the remaining eight games which will include Saturday games. NFL Network will also continue to simulcast the OTA games.

The NFL will see the rights fee jump from $300 million to $450 million as each network will pay $225 for their five games. Also, do note that the over-the-top rights have not been sold, meaning the NFL could rake in even more green when it is all said and done. 

CBS will take the first half of the schedule while NBC's schedule will start on November 17th. NBC's schedule do not include the season opener and the Thanksgiving nightcap as those are considered part of the Sunday Night football package. CBS and NBC will produce their slate of games with their top broadcasting crews (meaning Jim Nantz and Phil Simms will continue on these games, with Al Michaels and Cris Collinsworth adding Thursday night to their schedules). 

Given how far network television ratings have fallen over the years, it's not surprising that the networks wanted in on some primetime football which, even despite the mediocre quality of play on Thursdays, rates pretty well. Now CBS gets a small decrease in their rights fees for three fewer games while NBC gets a taste of the action as well as they want to boost their ad sales during the Christmas season. The NFL gets more television money and we all know how important that is to the league. So in the end, it seems like a win-win for everybody. 


  1. Glad that CBS and NFLN will continue with TNF. Welcome NBC to TNF.

  2. Thank god its not Fox... the less Joe "Aaron Rodgers makes me Moist" Buck, the better.

  3. Thank god its not Fox... the less Joe "Aaron Rodgers makes me Moist" Buck, the better.

  4. Hi Ben
    Wondering if ABC missed a trick here... NBC already has its SNF slots and since CBS and FOX are already in, it might have been a good call for ABC to add TNF to boost its dwindling sports output...

  5. So if Jim Nantz and Phil Simms will call games for CBS and Al Michaels and Cris Collinsworth will call games for NBC who will call games for the NFL Network?