Two of the Big 4 broadcast networks are the front-runners in talks to land the NFL’s “Thursday Night Football” package. The Wall Street Journal reports that CBS and NBC have moved to the front of the pack, with the NFL seeking to split the games between two broadcast nets along with its own NFL Network.
The league is “flexing its muscles in negotiations with TV networks over the renewal of Thursday night telecasts, not only seeking a sizable rights fees increase but also pushing multiple broadcasters to split the package and agree to potentially onerous scheduling conditions,” the publication reports, citing unnamed sources who are familiar with the situation.
“Under the scenario being discussed, CBS and NBC would each carry five Thursday games this fall,” WSJ reports. “The games would be simulcast on the league-owned NFL Network, which would carry the remaining Thursday night matchups exclusively. The price tag for the 10 games may be as much as $600 million, said a person familiar with the matter. This past fall, CBS paid $300 million for the rights to eight games.”
Fox is also said to be interested in securing some or all of the package, but is reportedly trailing the two front-runners.