The NFL is king on television, but that has never stopped them from trying to find new ways to grow that influence. There is growing momentum for the league to extend it’s Thanksgiving broadcast schedule into Black Friday.
The 2020 NFL season marked the first time in 11 years that there was a Friday game on the regular-season schedule, and now we might be looking at that happen every single season.
During a recent interview with Peter King of NBC Sports — Patriots owner Robert Kraft threw out the possibility that the NFL might soon start scheduling a game on Black Friday.
“Amazon wanted more from us, and they’ll dedicate tremendous resources to make this work for them and for us,” Patriots owner Robert Kraft told Peter King of Football Morning in America. “Who knows? Maybe we’ll play a game on Black Friday, their biggest shopping day of the year.”
Amazon is already getting set to take over Thursday Night Football broadcasting duties in 2023.
“I have so much respect for Jeff Bezos [Amazon Founder]. I said this to him: Our company [Kraft has a worldwide container and paper business] is in more than 120 countries. I’ve never seen anyone scale a business and keep quality as high as what Jeff Bezos has done with Amazon. They’re going to be a very good partner for the NFL.”
Black Friday is traditionally a day when people are out and about in stores trying to score good deals, but last year during a pandemic showed us that people might be more willing to stay home and just avoid crowds if they can get the same deals online.
It remains unclear how the NFL will be able to avoid the broadcast antitrust exemption, which says the league isn’t supposed to televise any games on Fridays or Saturdays from Labor Day weekend through early December.
Amazon might be an exception to the rule since the game would technically be streaming (and not televised).