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NFL broadcast games - what are the rules on what is carried? (1 Viewer)

Tony G

Stunt Coordinator
Dec 9, 1998
Does anyone know or have a reference to the rules on what games are carried on the networks?
For example...I know we are in the Titans region. (even though we're closer to Charlotte than Nashville!) Everytime they are playing, they are carried here. But they were off today. Fox, instead of giving us an early game, waited until the late game and we got Atlanta-Arizona. I get the Sunday Ticket, and was able to watch the other games today. But if I'm working or at someone else's house, I'm generally screwed. Today was a good day to have Sunday Ticket here...there were LOTS better games on than were carried by the network affiliates here.
So back to my question. How do they figure this out? Are there hard and fast rules, or do the affiliates have some leeway? And, does each affiliate have more than one "home team"? And is there a "home team" in each conference?
Surely these rules, if they exist, must be available somewhere.
Does anyone know?

Jin E

Second Unit
Nov 19, 2000
Kingsport! I grew up there. Lived right behind Ft Henry Mall. Anyhoo...
I'm lucky enough to get Distant Network feeds from DirecTV. I get a East coast and West coast networks... so I usually get a pretty good selection of games (with my local Antenna to add to the selection) without having to get the NFL package. I do know the the local affiliates always carry Atlanta if they are on the tube. The other games you will see Fox/CBS advertise the "Game of the week". I suspect if they can they try to show the game that will give them the highest rating (if they do not have to show the local team). Just a guess.
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Scott Merryfield

Senior HTF Member
Dec 16, 1998
Mich. & S. Carolina
Real Name
Scott Merryfield
If they are regional games, the network will usually show a game they consider "of interest" in your particular area. For example, in the Detroit area we will get a regional game involving an NFC Central team when possible. Today Fox showed Green Bay vs. Carolina (one Central team) instead of Minnesota vs. Tampa (two Central teams). They must believe the Packers have a better local following than the Vikings or Bucs. Oh, well, they lost me since I watched the Rams vs. Dolphins on CBS instead.
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AFI 100 Films to watch: 40 -> 4

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