Random Contrarian Comments — Part IV (NFL Football Version)

WHY DOES THE NFL WAIT SO LONG BEFORE ANNOUNCING THE MVP? The 2012 regular season was completed two weeks ago and yet the NFL has not announced the awards for this football season. Should not the awards be announced before the post season commences? Or does the NFL have a marketing strategy to maximize public relations for the most popular league in America?

If the NFL waits until the Super Bowl, when were the votes actually cast for the various categories? Will some of whom who have a vote be influenced in any way by some of the candidates still playing? Should the playoffs not interfere in any way on the voting? This should not only apply to the NFL but also to all major professional sports. Give the voters a few days in which to vote and at the very least, announce the winners no later than when the playoffs begin.

PUNT PASS AND KICK COMPETITION?  Every year, around this time, the NFL will announce the winners of the Punt, Pass and Kick awards. This occurred today during the Falcons-Seahawks game. First, it wasn’t until a few years ago that I realized this contest still existed. I remember it being big in the 1970s and 80s but its popularity seem to wane a little bit. My second thought had to do with any publicity around this campaign. I watch quite a bit of preseason and regular NFL football and not once did I hear any announcement of this program during the broadcast. in addition, I watch thee NFL network and never heard any mention of this program the young men and women can compete in — and no mention in any of the pregame shows on Fox, CBS, NBC, ESPN and the NFL Network. What gives?

Give me the necessary direction…

COUNTDOWN ON TV COMMERCIALS…I’ve seen this more and more where online ads will launch on a website or YouTube page and tell you the ad will finish in 10 or 30 seconds — providing some level of expectation. Could we apply that same standard to TV commercials? Or, are some commercial breaks 4 to 5 minutes long and advertisers would not want all viewers know exactly how long they go away?

WILL THE AFC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME TAKE LONGER THAN THE NFC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME? In the NFL today, two championship games will decide who will play in New Orleans in two weeks for the NFL’s biggest game of 2012-13. Both games TODAY will be broadcasted on CBS and FOX respectively. For CBS (AFC) their coverage is scheduled from 5 – 8:30 CT. On Fox, the game is scheduled from 2 – 5 pm CT. By doing simple math, the CBS game is scheduled to last 30 minutes longer.

How come? Does FOX underestimate how long the game will take? Will their be fewer plays in the NFC so the coverage is shorter? Or more running plays so the clock is more inclined to run? Does this game start exactly at the scheduled time whereas the AFC game will start about 20 minutes later than the schedule? Perhaps FOX knows there will be fewer injuries or no coaches’ challenges so fewer commercial timeouts?

What about the AFC game on CBS where it’s scheduled for 30 minutes longer. How come? Is it because New England has a hurry up offense so they’ll be more plays and most likely more scoring and commercial timeouts? More challenges by Belichick and Harbaugh? Might it have something to do with the scheduling of CBS, knowing that many NFL games, especially important games will require 210 minutes instead of 180 or 3 hours?

Whatever the reason for the distinction, one could see that each network handles the TV coverage differently. If you’re away from coverage today and you have AT&T as your provider, would it be more useful to record the time-slot for FOX or CBS? Would that extra hour with CBS get you all the tape you need to see the entire game?

ALWAYS SHOW THE 40 SECOND CLOCK DURING NFL COVERAGE… Yesterday, I watched the Buckeyes play the Spartans on ESPN TV. During most possessions, I was able to see the 35 second shot clock – in other words, this shot clock is an integral part of the game. Let’s go to NFL coverage. Each network does its own thing but none of them consistently provide the Play Clock (40 or 25 second clock) to viewers. Why not? It’s an integral part of the telecast. If they do it for college basketball coverage, why not for the NFL?