The NFL emphatically denied this week that there has been any thought to adding more Thursday night games.
Someone might want to let the NFL's most prominent owner know what the company line is, because Cowboys owner Jerry Jones gave a second life to the rumors.
In an interview with Sports Business Journal, it surely sounds like the idea has been kicked around by the NFL. The Wall Street Journal wrote that the league was considering another Thursday game earlier this week.
“We could easily have a doubleheader on Thursday," Jones told SBJ. "I don’t think that is out of the realm of thought, we haven’t set up how we will do it.”
According to Sports Business Journal, Jones said all options are open when asked if a second Thursday night game would be on NFL Network or another network. Huh, that makes this set of tweets from the NFL's PR team seem pretty odd:
Haven't even discussed it. RT @NFLprguy Wondering where idea of Thursday night doubleheader came from? So are we. We haven't considered it.
— Greg Aiello (@gregaiello) October 16, 2013
Jones also told SBJ that the union has "no say" on whether another game is moved to Thursday. That comment means that the NFL has probably also considered that putting more of a physical toll on its players runs completely against its public stance of increased safety, and the union would rightfully object.
Nothing about moving another game to Thursday makes any sense, except for money, which the NFL does enjoy.
There have been very few quality games on Thursday night since the league started putting them on NFL Network. Part of the problem is every team is guaranteed a prime-time game in this setup, which leads to some awful matchups. Also, asking teams to properly prepare with just three off days between games is a bit much. Expecting players to heal in just a few days is unrealistic at best, callous at worst.
There probably wouldn't be any objection if the NFL did away with its non-Thanksgiving games on Thursdays. The product hasn't been compelling. Yet, unless Jones is making things up in his head, the league seems to be at least kicking around the idea of adding more.
Hopefully there really is nothing to it, because adding another Thursday game is a really bad idea. Sometimes protecting the quality of the games is more important than making a few more bucks.
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