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NFL Network To Use 3 Analysts To Replace Mayock

“Quenzel stressed that he does not believe this will cause a mass defection of viewers away from the NFL Network on Draft Night.”

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Mike Mayock has been named the new general manager of the Oakland Raiders. That means one of the most respected draft analysts in the League will not be available to the NFL Network in 2019.

Richard Deitsch of The Athletic spoke with NFL Network’s Mark Quenzel about how the network will adjust to Mayock’s absence. Quenzel said that he is happy for Mayock to get the opportunity to move into a team’s front office. He told Deitsch that upon being informed of Mayock’s departure he said “Mike, I am so happy for you. Thank you for ruining my life!”.

All joking aside, Quenzel said that it isn’t lost on him how valuable Mayock has been and that no one person can make up for what the NFL Network is losing. “I am very surprised it took this long for (an NFL team to hire Mayock) and I have honestly been waiting for this call or text to come for a few years now. I always counted it as a blessing from our perspective that it didn’t come. But knowing that, we have been preparing for this for some time. Understanding that Mike is in many ways irreplaceable, we have incredible depth at the draft analyst position. Daniel Jeremiah is in many ways Mike’s equal in terms of knowledge. Obviously, he does not have Mike’s profile but he is amazing. Charles Davis is amazing, Bucky Brooks is amazing. We do not lack for people that know that absolute inside and outside of every draft class. So I am not worried about our ability to continue to deliver the information we have delivered with Mike.”

Jeremiah told Deitsch that he is already anticipating what the NFL Network’s desire to raise his profile will mean for his job description. “I think the biggest difference for me will be moving to the booth with Rich for our combine coverage. After the news was reported, I received a text from an NFL scout, ‘Hey DJ, you better work on your golf voice!’ I thought that was pretty funny. Also, I might be the new timer for Rich’s 40. That is a responsibility I’m not sure I’m ready to accept. I’m afraid it could impact our friendship.”

Quenzel stressed that he does not believe this will cause a mass defection of viewers away from the NFL Network on Draft Night. He acknowledged that there will be plenty of people that would be flipping back and forth between his product and ESPN’s anyway because of the competition’s planned MegaCast coverage of the event.

Still, Quenzel is confident in the NFL Network. “I think we can deliver an unbelievable product and my guess most of the people who watched us will continue to watch us.”

Sports TV News

The NFL Still Considering Multiple Offers For Sunday Ticket

The NFL has had the respective bids of Disney, Apple and Amazon for weeks now. DirecTV has not bid for the package but has stated it is willing to partner with the new rightsholder for a potential deal.

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Sunday Ticket Negotiations

DirecTV currently has the rights to Sunday Ticket. That deal expires at the end of this upcoming football season. The NFL is expected to make a boatload of cash when they decide which media organization gets the next rights to the package. The only question is… who will that be?

Alex Sherman of CNBC reports that the NFL has had the respective bids of Disney, Apple and Amazon for weeks now. DirecTV has decided not bid for the package. However, they are interested in partnering with the new rightsholder for a potential deal. DirecTV knows that Sunday Ticket is a staple in bars and restaurants and is interested in maintaining those relationships.

Outside of the bar/restaurant industry, success has been limited for the satellite provider with the football package. Fewer than two million subscribers signed up for Sunday Ticket each year which made the package a money-loser for the satellite TV provider.

According to the report, the NFL wants more than $2 billion for the rights and a stake in NFL Media, which is being packaged with Sunday Ticket. Also on the table is the NFL’s mobile rights. The league’s previous mobile agreement with Verizon has ended.

An interesting piece of the negotiations is Sunday Ticket price. According to the report, a buyer would have limited flexibility on pricing. The NFL signed contracts with CBS and Fox and within the framework of those deals, language mandates Sunday Ticket have a premium price. That’s to prevent loss of viewers from the networks that feature local market Sunday afternoon games. So essentially, the price is the price for the consumer.

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Sports TV News

F1 Renews With ESPN For U.S. Media Rights

ESPN was reportedly in a three-way bidding battle with Amazon and Comcast. According to the report, F1 told both Amazon and Comcast on Friday that they had decline to accept either one’s offer.

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F1 ESPN

The racing series F1 has decided to stick with ESPN through 2025.

ESPN was reportedly in a three-way bidding battle with Amazon and Comcast. According to the report, F1 told both Amazon and Comcast on Friday that they had decline to accept either one’s offer.

The reported value of the three-year contract is set to pay F1 $75-90M per year for the U.S. media rights. Amazon had offered to pay roughly $100M per year, with the right to sublicense to a linear broadcast network. Comcast’s offer was similar to ESPN’s in terms of value and the structure. They also wanted to put select races on it’s streaming service, Peacock.

Netflix was in on the negotiations, as well. The makers of Drive to Survive, the streaming series that many credit with the sport’s explosion in popularity in recent years, wasn’t close on on their financial offer. Also, it seems F1 executives were not ready to put all of its races on a streaming service just yet.

Currently, F1 receives $5M per year for ESPN to broadcast it’s races. ESPN has grabbed about 1.0 million viewers per race. That makes F1 a more than viable option for the network to invest into again. ESPN will be able to put a small number of races on its ESPN+ streaming service exclusively. The vast majority being on ABC or ESPN.

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Skip Bayless Says He And Stephen A. Smith ‘Sorted Out’ Their Disagreement

“Brothers fight. We have fought before. I’m assuming we will fight again.”

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Skip Bayless

Stephen A. Smith and Skip Bayless were locked in a war of words last week following the First Take host’s appearance on JJ Redick’s Old Man and the Three podcast.

The origins of their partnership were discussed and Bayless admitted he did not like the way Smith characterized the state of First Take before he arrived on set. Smith insisted that Bayless simply misunderstood what he meant by saying that he was told the show needed him.

Over the weekend, Skip Bayless says he and Stephen A. Smith got together at the Bayless home in California to talk things out in private.

“He was in LA, he came over, we sat by the pool,” he said on the latest episode of The Skip Bayless Show. “It wasn’t the easiest conversation for a while, but we slowly but surely sorted it out. We got through it, and we have been through so much together.”

Bayless reiterated that he considers Smith a brother. They love each other. That doesn’t mean they are always going to remember events the same way or see eye-to-eye all the time.

“Brothers fight. We have fought before. I’m assuming we will fight again.”

Fighting doesn’t mean the relationship is fractured. In fact, Skip Bayless was adamant that he remains closer to Smith than he is to most people in his life.

“I don’t trust easily because of the way I was raised, but I do trust Stephen Anthony Smith. Trust him with my life. Always have and always will. I trust he will always be there for me, and you better believe I will always be there for him.”

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