Posted by Jack Tumen
When was the last time you can remember watching a really good Thursday Night Football game?
Oh, um, never? That’s not surprising. “TNF” has never been an exciting event on a weekly basis. Even after eight years of it, it’s still weird watching football on a Thursday night.
The league tried to bring “TNF” to the next level this season. After years of broadcasting the game on NFL Network, a big-time cable network finally acquired the broadcasting rights for the Thursday night package. There’s no doubt, the NFL on CBS is a top-notch production and it’s much more appealing to watch a game on CBS than on NFL Network. Naturally, the ratings will increase because of this change as the league looks for an excuse to continue pushing the package.
But as an avid football fan – unless it’s your team that’s playing – it’s hard to get pumped for a Thursday night game. Yes, you’re always going to watch because it’s primetime football; but it’s not a quality product.
The NFL is a long, grueling season. Teams only play once a week for a reason; players need to rest their bodies in order to stay healthy. It takes a full week in order to prepare for an opponent – game planning, film studying and especially healing. Playing an NFL game on four days rest completely negates all of that valuable preparation time.
That was more than apparent in Thursday night’s catastrophe. That was the kind of game that people get fired for. Tampa Bay was missing two of it’s best players in Doug Martin and Gerald McCoy – three more days of rest and both of those guys are probably playing on Sunday. But in these Thursday night games, the better team is always going to win. It completely defeats the purpose of “any given Sunday.”
Now, I’m not trying to defend the Bucs in any way, shape or form – they played like fucking shit. But I do believe that the score would have been less lopsided had this game been played on Sunday.
On top of all that, “TNF” makes the week go wayyy faster than it should. Part of being a football fan is appreciating the scarcity of the game and looking forward to Sundays. Monday Night Football ends and all of a sudden, Thursday Night Football kicks off the next week of games and I’m like hooooold on there cowboy. Monday Night Football is a true tradition. One less day of rest doesn’t change that much. Players look forward to Monday Night Football – I doubt they say the same about Thursdays. The only other non-Sunday or Monday game that should ever be played is on Thanksgiving. That’s it. Kapish?
Through two weeks, we’ve seen two uninspiring blowouts on Thursday Night Football. There’s nothing that leads me to believe that the quality of play will ever improve on a Thursday night game. I mean, really, when was the last time you remember watching a really good Thursday Night Football game?