NFL Network: You've Hooked Us And Now You're Gonna' Drop Us?

Aaron LiebmanAnalyst IMarch 25, 2009

TAMPA, FL - FEBRUARY 01:  (L-R) The NFL Network pregame show with host Rich Eisen, former coach Steve Mariucci, hall of famer Deion Sanders, hall of famer Marshall Faulk and Warren Sapp before Super Bowl XLIII on February 1, 2009 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida.  (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

Whenever I go to some of my friends’ houses that have HD, satellite, premium channels like Starz, Showtime, or Cinemax, I always remind myself that even though I may not have all those things, I DO have the NFL Network. 

Many times I would call up asking if they saw the primetime Thursday game, only to learn they don’t get it!  Whenever a really good game would happen that I didn’t get to see, I knew I would get to see it on NFL Replay.

Imagine my disgust the other day when I saw a bright red light on my cable box indicating a message.  Usually, it would just be about an upcoming boxing match or wrestling event.  Instead, it was news that due to problems with Comcast, the NFL Network could be dropped as early as May 1.

Now, we get at least three Spanish networks, a few cable access channels, (not to mention Lifetime...I digress) but we can’t have the NFL network.  Having had the NFL Network since its inception, I never really pondered as to what the problem was with getting it broadcast to more people. 

As I’ve grown older, I’ve grown busier and really the only sport I can devote my undivided attention to is the NFL.  I stopped watching SportsCenter, or rather cut back, because who can really stop watching. Having the NFL Network simply talk only about the league was perfect, kind of like having a DVD player enabling you to skip to the points you wanted to see.

Over time, the network began America’s Game, which was a series on each Super Bowl winner.  It featured celebrity narration from the likes of Donald Sutherland, Tom Selleck, and James Gandolfini summarizing each teams struggles and successes to become champions.  It would also have three select members of that team interviewed.

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Of course, being a Giants fan, I almost counted down the days until they did an episode on the team’s 2008 Super Bowl win.  When I saw it I wasn’t disappointed. 

It was interesting to hear coach Tom Coughlin talk about how he had always cared about his players, yet he never showed it.  And that if that was to be his last year as coach, he was going to have fun. 

Even greater was the story of how Coughlin brought in a man to speak with the team who had lost BOTH of his legs in war, yet held the belief that his fellow soldiers would not leave him behind and at no time did he fear dying.

Before NFL Network, I would sometimes get saddened when the season was winding down.  But with the NFL Network, when no live games or anything really big were going on, I still had games replayed, the latest on trades, free agent signings, etc. 

Please don’t take that away from me and please give others the same gift as well.


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