Fox Scores Five Year ‘Thursday Night Football’ Deal

David Hookstead | Smoke Room Editor-in-Chief

Fox Sports has reached a massive deal with the NFL to broadcast Thursday night games.

The Hollywood Reporter has the scoop:

The NFL and Fox Sports have agreed to a massive five-year deal to broadcast Thursday Night Football beginning with the 2018 season. The agreement encompasses 11 regular-season games between weeks four and 15 (excluding Thanksgiving night, which NBC will continue to broadcast).

The deal also includes all digital rights, which will allow Fox distribute Thursday Night Football and its Sunday afternoon games to Fox subscribers on a variety of platforms, including mobile.

The value of the deal was not disclosed, but sources say 21st Century Fox’s bid was significantly more than the $45 million per game CBS and NBC paid last year.

The NFL might have a boatload of issues going on right now, but Fox has been killing it in the sports game. They first scored a multi-billion dollar deal with the Big Ten to stream their sports, and now have a massive deal with the NFL. It doesn’t get much better than that.

I would love to know how much Fox had to fork over these games. The fact they paid more than CBS’ bid means that broadcast networks must not be too worried about declining ratings, anthem protests and the perception that Goodell has lost control of the league. You don’t pay more for a product unless you’re very confident that you’re coming out on the winning end.

This also means we get the Fox broadcast crew, which is far superior to any other network. Terry Bradshaw by himself is pretty much better than everybody on CBS combined. As a fan, I couldn’t be happier about this deal.

UPDATE: the value is believed to be around $3 billion.

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David Hookstead

Smoke Room Editor-in-Chief
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