Both Turner and ESPN must feel some envy when they see that “Sunday Night Football” has become the No. 1 prime-time show on NBC, and has been for six years running.
Turner Sports controls an array of blue-chip sports TV properties, including the NBA, Major League Baseball, NCAA March Madness and the PGA Tour. It also is in partnership with Bleacher Report. But no sports TV giant feels complete without the mighty NFL in its fall programming lineup, even if regular-season ratings slid 8 percent last season.
Just ask NBC and CBS. Both networks were desperate to return to pro football after they lost their respective NFL TV packages. NBC was so hard up, it teamed with World Wrestling Entertainment to launch the short-lived XFL in 2001.
Twenty years ago, TNT threw its top talent at its Sunday night coverage, including Verne Lundquist, Mark May and the late, great Craig Sager. Here’s the great Lundquist on the mic with May and Pat Haden in 1997:
The network was also one of the first to cater to fantasy football owners by adding a player stats crawl during its halftime show.
Winning a piece of the NFL really put ESPN on the map in 1987. My guess is that the network’s president, John Skipper, will go to the mat to keep that piece. ESPN declined to comment for this story.
In 2016 alone, 30 celebratory acts were flagged, compared Cheap Jerseys And Jordans to 34 total from three seasons during 2013-2015. During Week 13, 49ers cornerback Cheap Jerseys Direct NBA Rashard Robinson was penalized for making a snow angel on the ground. During the same week, Packers wide receiver Randall Cobb was not penalized for celebrating in the same snow angel style.
The NFL’s goal is to make celebration penalties more consistent without disrupting the flow of the game.