March 15, 2024

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NFL Approves Allowing Teams to Play Two Games on Short Weeks, Tables Flex Scheduling

2 min read
NFL Approves Allowing Teams to Play Two Games on Short Weeks, Tables Flex Scheduling

Thursday Night Football: The NFL approves flex scheduling and allows teams to play two games in a row.

“Thursday Night Football” may have more compelling games on its schedule next season but we won’t find out for sure until May. The vote to flex “Thursday Night Football” games for 2023 was postponed by NFL owners on Tuesday at the league meetings.

To stop Thursday night games between losing teams, the flex plan’s primary goal should be passed. If the proposal is approved, the NFL would be able to move Sunday afternoon games from weeks 14 through 17 to Thursday night with 15 days’ notice.

The owners approved a rule that permits teams to play two Thursday games on short weeks, even though that change is still being discussed. That indicates that the league can now schedule teams for Thursday night games two times during the course of the season following a previous Sunday game. Previously, a team could only play one game on Thursday night after playing on Sunday.

While there is optimism that the flex scheduling proposal will be approved, there are reasons to think that the owners may decide against it. For example, schedule changes are not popular with NFL coaches, especially during the season. The possibility of asking teams to play more games on short weeks raises concerns about safety.

Amazon’s first season with “Thursday Night Football” drew an average viewership of 9.6 million, according to Despite being a respectable figure, Neilsen, it represented a 46% drop from the prior season, when Thursday night games were broadcast on Fox and NFL Network. The decrease in viewership might have been influenced by games with minor playoff implications.

Fans who buy tickets far in advance of their game are another problem. The possibility of more games being flexed might make fans think twice about buying tickets in advance of the game they intend to attend.

A proposal must receive 24 out of the 32 NFL owners’ votes in order to pass in order to receive 75 percent of the vote, or 24 votes. The owners are likely to approve the proposal even though it goes against the wishes of coaches, players, and fans given the NFL’s dedication to making money.


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