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Volume 26 No. 183
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Fox' Overlay For Packers-Giants Snow Game Draws Mixed Reactions

Packers-Giants was played in heavy snow yesterday, and some Twitter users complained that Fox' "fancy technology is getting in the way" by "superimposing all of the lines (including the hash marks) and yardage numbers on the MetLife Stadium turf," according to Tony Maglio of THE WRAP. The "simulated overlay hasn't jived particularly well" with players, "especially the white parts of their uniforms." Fox actually has "been doing the same thing for a couple of years now" (THEWRAP.com, 12/1). However, USA TODAY's Nate Davis writes Fox' field overlay "made the viewing experience of Packers-Giants far superior given the hash marks and yard lines were otherwise invisible for large stretches of the game" (USA TODAY, 12/2). THEBIGLEAD.com's Ryan Glasspiegel wrote reaction to the graphics "seems split" (THEBIGLEAD.com, 12/1). Packers podcast Lombardi's Legends tweeted, "Fox can you please remove the digital hashmarks? It takes away from the game." Wisconsin-based WEAU-NBC's Jesse Horne: "Don’t know if this is more funky or annoying" (TWITTER.com, 12/1).

SCHEDULE FLEXING: In Rochester, Sal Maiorana reports the NFL flexed the Dec. 15 Bills-Steelers game originally scheduled for 1:00pm ET into the "prime-time position" at 8:20pm on NBC's "SNF." It will be the first time since '07 the Bills have played in that time slot. NBC originally was set to show Vikings-Chargers on that day. The league previously announced that the Week 16 Bills-Patriots game was "flexed from Sunday afternoon into the Saturday, Dec. 21 national broadcast window on CBS at 4:30." This means the Bills now "will play three of their final five games on national TV" (ROCHESTER DEMOCRAT & CHRONICLE, 12/2). In Chicago, Phil Rosenthal noted NBC and the league "could switch the Bears out" of their scheduled Dec. 22 "SNF" appearance against the Chiefs. Rosenthal: "Believe it or not, it's also possible they could stick with the matchup for lack of better options." The "best matchup that weekend might be Cowboys-Eagles, but Fox has that scheduled as its late-afternoon game and almost certainly has locked it down so NBC can't take it away." NBC also "already had that matchup Oct. 20." NFL Network is "further complicating matters" by taking three games for Dec. 21, including "two good games in the process with Rams-49ers and Bills-Patriots." NBC does not have to decide on Chiefs-Bears until Dec. 10 (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 11/29).

TURKEY CALLS: CBS' broadcast of Bills-Cowboys on Thursday was the net's most-watched Thanksgiving Day game in 27 years and the most-watched regular-season game on any network in three years. The broadcast averaged 32.5 million viewers. Last year's Redskins-Cowboys game in the late-afternoon window drew 30.5 million viewers on Fox. Bills-Cowboys peaked at 35.4 million viewers from 7:00-7:15pm ET. Meanwhile, Bears-Lions in Thursday's early window drew 26.9 million viewers on Fox, making it the best early window Thanksgiving game since '16. CBS drew 26.5 million viewers last year for Bears-Lions in the early window. NBC drew a total audience delivery of 21.1 million viewers for the Saints' win over the Falcons on Thursday night. Last year's primetime game featuring the same teams drew a TAD of 21.9 million viewers (THE DAILY).

THANKSGIVING LEFTOVERS: In Buffalo, Alan Pergament wrote he "would have thought" CBS' Jim Nantz and Tony Romo "would have gone overboard to seem impartial" during Bills-Cowboys, but "almost from the start of the pregame show to finish, one could understand why some Bills fans may have thought CBS' broadcast seemed like a preseason game produced by the Cowboys." Some of the "early emphasis on the Cowboys was justified." However, the "overwhelming nature of Cowboy talk" was "at times stunning to Bills fans prone to feeling disrespected" (BUFFALO NEWS, 11/30)....The TRIBUNE's Rosenthal wrote he is "not part of the anti-Joe Buck crowd," and was "more amused than annoyed by his semi-serious plea" for Bears WR Cordarrelle Patterson to take a knee on a kickoff during Bears-Lions on Thanksgiving. Patterson fielded the kick seven yards deep in the endzone, only to "return it to the 50." Rosenthal: "Give Buck extra credit for his own self-own ... after the Bears parlayed the field position to a six-play scoring drive and a 7-0 lead" (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 11/29).