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Additional Networks Could Broadcast The NFL Draft

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The popularity of the NFL Draft has increased throughout the years. ESPN played an integral role, broadcasting the draft exclusively from 1980-2005, turning it into a must-see event. The NFL Network joined the party in 2006, giving the league expanded coverage, and an even bigger feel to one of its most important off the field events.

But the future of the NFL’s offseason spectacular is likely to have a different look. FOX has been given the green light by the league to create on-air programming for the NFL Draft, and according to Michael McCarthy of the Sporting News, NBC and CBS could televise the event in coming years.

McCarthy says the league’s contracts with FOX and ESPN don’t promise exclusivity on coverage. Last year’s first night of the draft was seen by 6.7 million viewers on ESPN and another 2.5 million on NFL Network, according to the New York Times. With six quarterbacks potentially being chosen in the first round this year, and both New York football teams selecting in the top 3, expectations are that the audience will be even stronger for the 2018 NFL Draft.

Some league executives are hopeful of the draft becoming the sports version of the U.S. presidential election. That event is carried by most national networks, and although the 2018 Draft will be broadcast on six TV channels (FOX, ABC, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN Deportes and NFL Network), it’s clear the NFL wants more.

The league has shown that it’s willing to change things up to grow its ratings and revenue. In recent years the three-day affair was moved away from Radio City Music Hall in New York. Cities can now bid for the right to host the draft, similar to what they must go thru to gain the rights to the Super Bowl, WrestleMania and the Olympics. Over 70,000 fans attended last year’s draft in Philadelphia, and more than 100,000 are expected this year in Arlington, Texas.

 

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Mike Tirico, Tom Brady, Manningcast Win Sports Emmys

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The annual Sports Emmys were handed out on Tuesday night, and some usual names and new names ended up taking home hardware.

Among the usual names were NBC’s Mike Tirico, who won for Outstanding Personality/Studio Host, and soon-to-be Sunday Night Football broadcast colleague Cris Collinsworth, who was named Outstanding Personality/Sports Event Analyst.

But among the new names as Sports Emmy winners include Tom Brady and both Eli and Peyton Manning.

Brady’s Man in the Arena saga won Outstanding Documentary Series, while the Mannings were rewarded for their work on the Monday Night Football Manningcast, which won Outstanding Live Series.

Here’s a rundown of some of the key Sports Emmy winners:

Here is a full list of winners and nominees for the 2022 ceremony.

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Joe Buck Says He Won’t Miss World Series

“This is the first time since I was 18-years-old, and I’m 53, that I’m not doing a baseball game.”

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USA Today

Among the bigger chain reactions set off by Joe Buck leaving FOX for ESPN was the sudden vacancy in FOX’s main MLB broadcast booth.

The 2022 World Series will mark the first time since 1995 that Buck will not be on the microphone.

Speaking to Chris Long on his podcast Green Light, Buck hopes to be in a more exotic location watching World Series games this fall.

“I would like to be in Cabo San Lucas with a margarita in my hand and a half-smoked cigar watching Game 7 of the World Series,” Buck said. “Cheering on Joe Davis and John Smoltz, and Ken Rosenthal, and Tom Verducci, and Pete Macheska and Matt Gangl and right on down the line.”

Buck added he’ll take pleasure in turning the broadcast off if it’s Game 7 and there’s an insurmountable lead. But the broadcasting legend said even on a bigger scale, not calling any baseball games at all this season, let alone the World Series, is a bit surreal after covering the sport for so long.

“This is the first time since I was 18-years-old, and I’m 53, that I’m not doing a baseball game,” he said. “And that’s really weird to me, but I walk away really proud of what I and we did.”

He added that he will not miss the opportunity, because he does not feel like he will “leave any unfinished business” in FOX’s MLB booth.

Buck further praised his FOX colleagues and said it was time for a change. He knows Joe Davis will thrive in the opportunity.

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NFL Likely To Launch NFL+ Streaming Service This Summer

“A source tells Fischer that a $5 per month price has been discussed for NFL+.”

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According to the Sports Business Journal, consumers could be downloading NFL+ by July. Now, just what NFL+ will be is still yet to be finalized.

Ben Fischer of Sports Business Journal reported in the site’s newsletter that live games will certainly be at the center of the league-owned streaming service. It is likely to only be available on phones and tablets with no option to stream to a larger monitor.

The viewing options would be limited. No out of market games would be available on the app. It is meant to replace the deals that recently expired with Yahoo and mobile phone carriers that recently expired.

The app could also include other content. Radio calls, team-created digital content, and league-owned podcasts are all options. 

NFL+ would make NFL Media more valuable. The league is trying to sell an equity stake in its linear TV and digital media properties. Amazon and Apple are considered the most likely to make a deal. 

A source tells Fischer that a $5 per month price has been discussed for NFL+. The pricing structure can and likely will change before the app hits the market.

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