ESPN really works really reeeeeaaaaalllllllllyyyyyy hard to get back in the NFL's good grace. This weekend NFL Draft smorgasbord across ESPN and ABC is just the latest example of the network rolling out the red carpet to the NFL after the Bristol-Shield relationship hit a rough patch. If you turn on a Disney-owned network over the next three days, you will probably see a reference to the draft. It will be the closest thing in reality when Montgomery Burns took over all television to get back to his beloved bear BoBo.
The latest example of ESPN's outreach to the NFL is sure to turn some heads into the sports media world. On Thursday and Friday, ESPN2 will simulate the popular NFL Network morning show Good Morning Football from 7-1
ESPN2 simulates NFL Net's "Good Morning Football" tomorrow and Friday from noon. 07.00-11: 00:00. SBJ Media newsletter: https://t.co/n4eyqixc73
– John Ourand (@Ourand_SBJ) April 24, 2019
The simulcast of a league network show is not necessarily unprecedented. ESPN2 has previously had a relationship with MLB Network from 2017 to 2018, when the Bristol network broadcasted a simulcast of Intentional Talk after cutting its own Baseball Tonight program. (It was, however, a lengthy event, and it ended at the end of last year.)
Although it is only two days, ESPN delivers a four-hour block of prime morning hours to one of their biggest competitors in The morning is surprising. Good Morning Football is widely recognized as one of the best study shows in sports right now, blending analysis, humor and pop culture extremely well. Basically, GMFB succeeded in organizing everything ESPN has tried to spend millions of dollars to make on Get Up . Does ESPN not get the risk of its own viewers discovering GMFB and enjoying it more than ESPN's own morning programming options ( usually Get Up and First Take First Take ] on ESPN, SportsCenter on ESPN2) and then not returning to ESPN's network after the draft
Perhaps that may be the case, but ESPN clearly believes that this simulcast is another chance to win about NFL. This time last year, ESPN's relationship with the NFL was not so good. On the one hand, the NFL has always been characterized by ESPN's legitimate journalistic efforts, which continue to investigate the behavior of leagues on a number of fronts. On the other hand, ESPN pays one billion dollars plus for what is now the third largest primetime game of the week on Monday night.
The NFL itself dug into the ESPN audience by simulating the draft of Fox, while it was rumbling that the NFL could also give them ESPN's Wild Card playoff game. (The last piece has not yet come to work.) The ESPN-NFL relationship was such an undamaged one that the impossible became more and more plausible – NFL games could one day be out of ESPN for the first time since 1980 & # 39; s.  Over the past year, ESPN has clearly placed their business relationship with the NFL at the forefront. New President Jimmy Pitaro publicly said that "strengthening our relationship with the NFL" was his weight, and there are a number of examples to prove precisely this from the crossover coverage of NFL Draft and Pro Bowl to more positive energy from the new Monday night football announcement crew. The last twelve months have been an all-out blitz of love from Bristol trying to show the league that the two superpowers are better together than they are separated.
It's no secret why ESPN consistently goes the extra mile for their NFL's huge Monday night football rights contract ends in 2021, and there are plenty of potential suitors for NFL rights. The ESPN clearly wants their relationship with the league to last for many years to come and is willing to do everything necessary to make it happen. They just hope it's enough to hold the competition for the next billion-dollar deal.