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SBD/December 16, 2015/Media
NFL Ready To Accept New Bids For Thursday Night Package, Including Streaming Companies
Published December 16, 2015
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INSIDE THE RFP: The league’s RFP shows that the NFL had not altered its strategy a great deal when it comes to the Thursday night package. As in the past two years, the NFL outlined a Thursday night deal that would have the winning bidder produce all 16 games, even ones that would be carried exclusively on NFL Network. NFL Network would continue to simulcast games from the winning bidder and carry eight games -- produced by the winning bidder -- on its own. The RFP asks TV companies to outline a plan for how they would grow NFL Network should they win the package, through promotional efforts and added reach. At least one network exec floated the idea of potentially bidding to take over the channel’s cable carriage negotiations as a way to grow the network, but an NFL source said that is not what the league means by “growing" the network. Multiple sources said that the RFP mentioned the idea of allowing NFL Network to simulcast at least one of the network’s playoff games, sources said, though TV network executives said such a situation would be unlikely. The NFL expects to receive the bids shortly after the New Year with a decision expected to come before the Super Bowl.