Could Thursday Night Football Bump Grey's and Scandal? ABC Mum on Reported Bid for Games

Scandal New Time SlotFlag on the play!

The day after a report circulated that ABC is set to bid on the NFL’s Thursday Night Football package — raising the possibility that Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal would need to be relocated — network president Paul Lee was firmly mum on the topic.

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As reported by Sports Business Daily, ABC is among the outlets poised to make a grab for the games, and in success would broadcast them on ABC proper versus cable sibling ESPN.

Following his appearance at the Television Critics Association winter press tour on Friday, Lee repeatedly responded, “I don’t have anything to say about it” when asked about the possible play for the NFL package.

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Where, if need be, would you move ABC’s Thursday dramas to?

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71 Comments
  1. Et al says:

    Paul Lee is too busy searching the want ads to worry about something like this.

    • Will says:

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  2. LDSK says:

    Given the extremely high ratings Football usually brings in I’m sure ABC would happily make room on their schedule (and use Grey’s and Scandal to fill in for other poor performers elsewhere) It’s win/win for the network.

  3. jessica y says:

    UGH.
    don’t move my thursday shows.

    • the girl says:

      This. Besides, Thursday Night Football is not an ever week thing. They only do a few per season and then its over by the end of December when the regular season ends. So they shouldn’t have to move Scandal and Grey’s at all anyway.

      • the girl says:

        Wow. Apparently I’m wrong. I just looked at the NFL website and they ARE talking about having a game every Thursday. But still, the games end in December. This isn’t an all year thing.

        • Chuck Finley says:

          They have a game every Thursday except for Thanksgiving and the last week of the regular season. Been this way for a while.

          • Joey says:

            Thanksgiving has like 3 games, one of which airs on NBC at night. So pretty much every Thursday has a game, all of which are on NFL network except for the season opener and Thanksgiving.

          • Chuck Finley says:

            Duh. I was talking about NFL NETWORK games which don’t include Thanksgiving. Those are the games that ABC is trying to get. Thanksgiving games are not going to be up for grabs for ABC. I should also have included opening week not having a Thursday night game I think. I don’t believe there is one that week.

  4. AB says:

    I think this is a good move. It will help ABC’s ratings and in the age of DVR, these shows will be fine. Move Grey to Sundays and Scandal to Tuesdays or Wednesdays in Nashville’s spot.

    • susan says:

      first off Sunday will a death day for Grey’s. Scandal dead day is tueday and wednesday it would lose aganist CSI

      • jenna says:

        considering grey’s started out on sundays before moving to thursdays (in season 3 I think?) I’m sure it will do fine

        • Susan D says:

          Grey’s was virtually a different (BETTER!) show when it was on Sundays at 10. Seasons 1 and 2 were it’s very best. Moving it to Sundays at 10 now – and separating it from Scandal – will further be show suicide as it’s already losing viewers by the season.
          I’m sure the network would want to keep Grey’s and Scandal together because they in some way support each other.

          They should move them to Wednesdays. Put Super Fun Night (or insert comedy here) and Modern Family and 8 and 8:30, Grey’s at 9, and Scandal at 10. I don’t know what/who they’d be up against, but it doesn’t really matter at this point as Thursdays have been the most competitive night on television and yet they’ve both continued to pull decent numbers.

    • DavidSask says:

      That would be the smartest move indeed!

  5. David says:

    Tuesday probably makes the most sense. Shield at 8 followed by Greys at 9 then Scandal. Then you can move Goldbergs and Trophy Wife to Wednesday. I don’t think any of the new comedies yet to debut this season on abc will make it. Mixology looks horrible.

    • Larc says:

      Up against the NCIS duo, which will likely be a trio next season with the addition of NCIS: New Orleans? Probably not a smart move. My vote would be for Monday or possibly Wednesday.

      • greysfan says:

        You seem to be forgetting something. NCIS is a crime drama. Grey’s and Scandal are different shows and a different type of genre and attract a different audience. That’s how TV works. Its why NBC’s comedy Thursday is failing because its comedy against comedy. They are the same sort of shows. Grey’s and Scandal are different. Plus Grey’s would be at 9pm not at 8pm against the original NCIS. I find NCIS: LA to be horrible and i don’t watch it. I only watch the original.

        • Kathy A says:

          No, they don’t necessarily attract different audiences. People don’t watch just one type of show. My husband and I are dedicated viewers of both Grey’s and NCIS — along with shows like Sleepy Hollow, the Blacklist, Person of Interest, Castle, Bones, CSI, L&O SVU, Suits, Big Bang Theory, Royal Pains, White Collar, Psych, Chicago Fire and PD, MasterChef, plus cooking and home improvement shows on cable (our idea of reality shows — not the fake situational shows like Duck Dynasty or any of the Housewives shows or their ilk. Good God — give us Renovation Realities or Chopped any day), as well as the simulcasts of Mike Francesa and Dan Patrick’s radio sports talk shows. I’m sure we’re not alone in our varied viewing habits, either. Football? Not really on our radar — but we pay $200 a year for the Extra Innings package for baseball.

          • Anthony Rock says:

            WoW you guys watch a lot of tv

            I watch Sleepy Hollow,
            I watch the Black list but only when James Spader is on ( I thank the inventor of DVR)
            I watch Person of Interest
            I watch Scandal.
            I watch Suits.

  6. Samantha says:

    I cannot imagine a Thursday night without Grey’s Anatomy.

  7. Tom Is Ugly says:

    Grey’s needs to end, so they should just worry about finding a place for Scandal.

  8. Ralph Hartman says:

    I would do it. Move Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal to Tuesday at 9 and 10 and The Goldberg’s to after Modern Family. That would probably shore up those problem timeslots then ABC would only have to worry about fixing the Sunday night at 10 timeslot.

  9. Austin says:

    Honestly, I’d be happy for ABC because Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal aren’t going down anytime soon.

  10. Will says:

    My concern would be the placement of Scandal. I kind of agree with the previous posters about Greys/Scandal moving together to Tuesdays at 9 and 10 pm respectively. That would put Scandal up against Chicago Fire and Person of Interest which I think it could easily beat both in the demo no problem.

    • Will says:

      Follow up: Would ABC then move an established show to Thursdays at midseason when Football is over or have completely new series? I feel that it would be far more difficult to debut all new shows on one night without a single established anchor.

    • Ralph Hartman says:

      The problem isn’t going up against Chicago Fire and Person of Interest in the fall it’s the competition that Sons of Anarchy brings especially since the next season is it’s final season.

  11. demoniam says:

    The shows air whenever I get around to watching them on my dvr. I’m sure that’s how lots of people look at it.

  12. Fernando says:

    They don’t need this on Thursday they need to do this on Sunday or Tuesday where thier time slots need help Thursday are fine plus if you move scandal and Greys what makes them think ratings won’t go down against other shows they never been up against

    • Jax says:

      Uh…You do realize that they have to follow when the Football games are played. There is already enough football on Sunday already and they don’t play football on Tuesday.

      • Fernando says:

        Then they should not do this. Scandal and Greys are fine where they are. Don’t mess with what does not need to be fix.

  13. Zorkel says:

    I don’t want them moved to Tuesdays. That would put them up against NCIS, NCIS: LA, and the hopeful NCIS: New Orleans.

    • kate says:

      I agree with you! I can’t believe how many people have failed to take the NCIS franchise into mind when suggesting tuesdays. Even with this years ratings down, both shows have almost double viewers than greys or scandal, give or take a few million…

  14. Boiler says:

    Just what we need, more football on network TV. This could be a disaster. Thursday games are nuts anyway

  15. Meg says:

    I have too many Thursday shows. I’d be happy if Grey’s and Scandal moved to another night. Like Wednesday.

    • trainwreck says:

      yeah Grey’s would be a good addition to Wednesday schedule – but mind you, Private Practice died on wednesday move! .. although not sure about Scandal… it’s a powerful show currently so it can survive on Tuesdays or Sundays even.

  16. Ally Oop says:

    Currently, the ratings for scripted television are a tiny fraction of what they used to be and they’ll only fall further. I wouldn’t be surprised to see networks only consisting of live events.

    I think what we’ll see eventually, in regards to the networks, is this:

    1) the networks gradually shift to live events like sports, reality shows or news shows only and scripted network tv dies altogether because no one watches it live with commercials

    2) the networks become cable channels with cable/satellite companies selling channels individually rather than in tiers/groups, which will in effect mean the disappearance of many less-popular channels from the horizon (goodbye Book Television and The Golf Channel, for instance)

    3) the networks “go black” and become online streaming companies only a la Netflix and Hulu

    I see all these things happening in steps with the endgame being the complete merger of cable/satellite/tv/internet/telephone altogether.

  17. hipster says:

    That’s one way cure you Tuesday night rating blues in the fall… by moving everything from Thursday to Tuesday. LoL.

  18. Dennis says:

    Why not just hold them till after football, then start them in Dec/Jan and let them play through with no breaks/reruns.

  19. Allyson says:

    I am so tired of football taking over network tv. There are thousands of sports channels!!!!! I get football is a popular sport, but my gosh pretty soon there will be hardly any time for a scripted show to be aired, b/c football gets top priority. Keep it to Sundays and Mondays. I have a better idea if ABC and other networks want to stop airing more football games air it on Friday. It is STUPID! Remember the days when there were so many shows on tv? Now it is filled of live events, reality shows, and sports games. I am pretty sure ESPN is part of basic cable so everyone should have that channel.

  20. sam says:

    This is a great move that ABC really needs, they don’t get the benefit that the other three networks get because of the football audience. Move Grey’s and Scandal to sundays or mondays, move Dancing with the stars to Tuesdays and a results show on wed before or after modern family.

  21. Abe Froman says:

    Screw Thursday, bring back Monday Night Football where it belongs!!

  22. Vi says:

    I am not a football fan and I don’t watch many ABC shows …. But that’s my station on Thursday. Put football on and I lose my Thursday night lineup 😠…plus the problem of where to put these shows that aren’t up against other shows I watch. Wish Time Warner had DVRs that would record more than 2 shows at one time!

  23. eddie says:

    this is agreat idea for abc, that way they can get the superbowl. its not that big of a deal is scandal and greys move to tuesday or sunday.

    • Kathy A says:

      How does airing Thursday Night Football get the Super Bowl for ABC? Those rights are separate from any regular-season package of games. If ABC wants the Super Bowl, all it has to do is enter the bidding when the rights come up again. And it could have done that any time in the past — nothing stopped them from ponying up the money.

  24. Victhor says:

    But the games have just one hour, so Grey’s and Scandal are not threatened, right?

    • Kathy A says:

      Football games? An hour? Maybe in actual play time, but there are commercials, timeouts, breaks in the action between plays, halftime, postgame commentary — a game runs closer to three hours in real time.

  25. J says:

    Isn’t this what sports networks are for. Besides real men play rugby and don’t dress up in a ton of pads.

  26. greysfan says:

    If ABC does get football IMO its an easy fix. Move it to Tuesdays. It would fix the problem they have there i would like to think. Have Shield as the lead in and then Grey’s and Scandal after. I would NOT split up the combination either. It works so well together. BUT ABC has to win first.

  27. Jon says:

    This would be a huge win for Abc. A Thursday night game on network Tv would pull anywhere from 20-25 million viewers and probably a 10 in the demo at the least. Grey’s and scandal can be moved anywhere. Abc needs help in many time slots since virtually nothing new this year has succeeded and some second year shows will be shown the door.

  28. Don’t move the shows. Have a later start date and have no stupid winter break or fall finales. I would love to be able to watch the season back-to-back

    • ck says:

      Agreed – Football through December, then switch to Greys/Scandal for January – May with no breaks or repeats. Aren’t those shows on a three month break right now as it is?

    • cycworker says:

      I prefer this idea to moving nights. Realistically, as has been mentioned, Thursday football would end in December. January is playoffs and only Sundays, right? So air Grey’s/Scandal on Thursdays once football ends. Then get them both on the air after the Superbowl, too.

      And the other thing I think could be good about this… wouldn’t it please the actors, too? It would allow them to change the shooting schedule in a way that would possibly give the actors a wee bit more freedom.

  29. jenilee says:

    This makes a lot of sense on ABC’s part. ABC has a demographic that skews largely female. This will help them bring in more men to watch ABC. I’m not worried about Scandal/Grey’s moving nights because these shows have passionate fan bases who will follow them anywhere, myself included.

  30. Grant says:

    Would be the best thing ever to happen to ABC since, as someone else said, Shonda Rhimes started developing series for the network. Thursday Night football would enable them to hold Grey’s and Scandal until December or January or they could move both to Tuesdays 9-11 to shore up that dead zone. Would be even better if (and know it won’t happen) Monday Night Football went back to ABC, which would enable ABC to move its current Monday hits, Dancing With The Stars and Castle, to Tuesday and they could eliminate a lot of the current flops and focus on holding onto solid hit programs to fill in holes on Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and Sunday.

  31. mary fleming says:

    Any news on the show “Boss?

  32. DAVID says:

    Greys and Scandal end up starting after football season over. better for both shows, no repeats!

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