After months-long negotiations that drew interest from multiple broadcast networks, CBS has won the Thursday Night Football derby.
The deal calls for CBS to air eight NFL games right in the middle of the 2014 fall season, which will likely force some big changes on the network’s schedule (not the least of which is what happens to Thursday juggernaut The Big Bang Theory; let the back-to-Monday speculation begin).
Those eight games will be simulcast on the NFL Network. Additionally, NFL Net will also televise eight late-season games in the run-up to the playoffs (for a total of 16).
“We are very pleased to build on our outstanding partnership with the NFL by expanding our coverage to Thursday nights,” said CBS CEO Moonves in a statement. “CBS is a premium content company and the NFL represents the best premium content there is. I look forward to all this new deal will do for us not only on Thursday nights, but across our entire schedule.”
Thursday Night Football is coming off its most-watched season ever, averaging 8 million viewers – up 10 percent from its 2012 numbers.