Thursday night football will be coming back to CBS when football returns next season, this according to a new deal announced from the network earlier today. With the new arrangement, CBS has agreed to host a total of eight Thursday Night Football games in 2015, they will be simulcast on CBS and the NFL Network.
“We are pleased to extend our partnership with CBS for Thursday Night Football. The promotion and production by CBS and NFL Network last season made Thursday night a night for NFL football. We look forward to working again next season with CBS,” said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell in a statement announcing the news Sunday.
Leslie Moonves, the CBS CEO said, “The benefits of Thursday Night Football are evident across our Corporation, including a strengthened primetime lineup that has built on its number one position. The NFL continues to be the best premium content in the business, and we look forward to another year of our expanded partnership in 2015/16, a season that will culminate with Super Bowl 50 on CBS.”
While Monday Night games have proven to be more popular in the past, CBS has dominated many of the weeks leading into this year’s playoffs with its Thursday Night Football scheduling, even though Thursday tends to be the cornerstone of popular television programming on other networks. CBS uses the games as a lead-in for many of its popular shows, and the games are a crucial part of their advertising revenue for the year.
The deal also comes with an option given to the NFL to extend the contract into the 2016 season. As for Thursday Night Football, the NFL could create new packages for networks to bid on in 2015, but stopped-short of offering any details at this time. While CBS, Verizon, Dish-Network and other leading ISPs and networks have pushed for more Football games to be streamed online, the new Thursday Night Deal didn’t offer any insight into the 2015 online availability of Football games.