Published On: Sat, Aug 20th, 2016

NFL clarifies stance on NBC's Thursday night announcers

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The NFL released a statement Saturday to clarify its stance on the announcers that will call the “Thursday Night Football” package for NBC this upcoming season.

Earlier in the day, it was reported that the league would not allow NBC to have veteran play-by-play man Mike Tirico front the games. Tirico was hired by NBC in the spring after leading the calls on ESPN’s “Monday Night Football” since 2006.

The NFL’s reasoning is outlined in a statement released on Twitter from league spokesman Brian McCarthy.

When we bid out the Thursday Night games, NBC came to us with an impressive pitch to bring the magic of Sunday Night Football – specifically Al and Cris and their production team – to Thursday Night. That was very attractive to us as we look to continue to build on the success of Thursday Night Football, and is similar to the deal we have with CBS for their lead broadcast and production team. We came to a contractual agreement with NBC on those terms.

In fact, when the NFL, CBS and NBC jointly announced the expansion of the Thursday Night Football last February, we said:

Both CBS and NBC will produce Thursday Night Football with their lead broadcasters and production teams, and both will contribute to the production of Thursday Night Football exclusively on NFL Network. CBS and NFL Network will televise the first half of the Thursday Night Football schedule with NBC and NFL Network televising the second half.

Our contract with NBC requires that the Sunday Night team also do Thursday Night. It is up to NBC to determine who the talent is for both nights based on those parameters.

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