The NFL, in an ongoing quest to give fans a reason to leave their comfy Barcaloungers, their Red Zone channel, their gargantuan high-def TVs and their inexpensive yet delicious beers, has come up with a new idea.
The league, SportsBusiness Journal reports, will require that teams install cameras in home locker rooms and that video be shown on team apps and at the stadium during halftime and other breaks in the action. Actually showing the footage is optional, although the cameras are not.
“The content will be available only in-stadium, and the content will be available only of the home team,” NFL Executive VP/Business Ventures Eric Grubman told SBJ. “You can show it or not show it.”
Teams will be required to show key replays in the stadium, without regard to whether they favor or hurt the home team. Just like at home!
“We’re going to mandate replays, not just after a disputed call but after a whole series of important plays, fumbles, out of bounds,” Grubman said. “Now it doesn’t matter if you want your technician to favor the home team. You’re not going to have a choice. Why? Just listen to the fans.”
Ah, yes, the fans. It’s impossible to hear them if they’re at home, as the New York Times’ Judy Battista points out:
The push toward more video during the game, though, speaks to the league’s larger concern that the quality of television broadcasts, and the quality of the televisions themselves, may prompt more and more fans to stay home instead of going to games, thereby avoiding high-priced tickets, traffic jams and harsh weather. The video will only be available in the stadium, providing the fans the kind of extras the league believes it must offer to induce fans to attend games.