Thursday Night Games Were So Awful Last Year NFL Owners Are Voting To Flex Them

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Al Michaels openly admitted the NFL’s Thursday Night slate STUNK last season, and the league appears to be adjusting on the fly.

According to Sports Business Journal (SBJ), owners will be asked at next week’s league meetings to approve a flex scheduling plan for late-season Thursday games. The vote would also relax limits on the number of games each team can play on short rest each season.

NFL may start flexing Thursday Night Football games on Amazon

Was that just a collective hallelujah I just heard on this fine Friday afternoon? I think so!

Get that stupid late season Eagles-Texans off my TV screen, STAT. Anyone remember Raiders-Rams (which was actually good thanks to Baker Mayfield), or Falcons-Panthers?

Woof. Boy, last season’s Thursday Night Football schedule truly did stink. Our national nightmare may soon be over, though!

Sort of.

From the SBJ:

Specifically, the measure awaiting owners would permit the league to:

  • Shift Sunday afternoon games to Thursday nights in weeks 14-17, with 15 days’ notice.
  • Schedule teams for Thursday games after a previous Sunday game twice in the same season, up from the current limit of once.
NFL could flex Thursday Night Football games.
Thursday Night Football games stunk last season. (Photo by Michael Loccisano/Getty Images for Amazon)

OK, so we still very well may get some clunkers the first few months of the season, but beggars can’t be choosers.

Now, the holdup here will obviously be that final line, which says teams could be forced to play two TNF games down the road. Can’t imagine any players, coaches or the NFLPA will be thrilled with that.

The other downer here is the fact that literally every single day can pretty much be flexed should this rule pass.

Don’t forget, Monday Night Football games can also be flexed starting next season, too. Add that in with the already flexible Sunday Night Football slate, and the fact that FOX (great company!) and CBS can already protect their marquee games, and I’m not sure what’s gonna be left for poor Al and Kirk Herbstreit.

Those two, by the way, were pretty good last year, while the Amazon ratings were excellent … for Amazon.

The SBJ also noted that 9.6 million viewers watched on average last season, which was good for Prime but down 46% from the prior year when the games were on FOX and NFL Network.

While the vote is reportedly set for next week, sources weren’t clear when the proposed rule would take effect.

Written by Zach Dean

Zach grew up in Florida, lives in Florida, and will never leave Florida ... for obvious reasons. He's a reigning fantasy football league champion, knows everything there is to know about NASCAR, and once passed out (briefly!) during a lap around Daytona. He swears they were going 200 mph even though they clearly were not.

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  1. It’s worth noting that the Dallas Cowboys have played two Thursday games (Thanksgiving and one late-season game, though sometimes, that second game is the week after Thanksgiving), but that doesn’t make this idea any less dumb.

    I’m sure a playoff contender is going to be thrilled about suddenly having to play a game on three days rest thanks to the Greed of Goddell and his Goons (aka the owners). Maybe the league should just ditch Thursday Night Football altogether (but, we know that’s not happening in my lifetime).

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