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Greg Olsen: FOX Was Upfront About Brady Joining Network

“When the Brady news broke, we weren’t exactly sure what that meant…to FOX’s credit, they were super upfront and they called us and they said this was too good of an opportunity to pass up, but we would love you and Kevin to be back together again and call this year as the A crew…”

Ricky Keeler

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Greg Olsen

With the news of Tom Brady joining FOX Sports once his career is over, the one person that it could have the most effect on going forward is Greg Olsen. This year, Olsen gets a promotion from the number two analyst to being an analyst on the A team that will call the Super Bowl with Kevin Burkhardt.

Olsen was a guest on The Adam Schefter Podcast this week and he said he appreciated that FOX was upfront in telling him about Brady joining the FOX family and he appreciates getting a chance to call the Super Bowl this year:

“It was just a long offseason of speculation and rumor and reports of who was going to get the job. We always knew we were in the mix. We [Olsen and Burkhardt] weren’t exactly sure who else was in the mix. We had some conversations over the winter.”

“When the Brady news broke, we weren’t exactly sure what that meant. We weren’t exactly sure where we fit into that picture. To FOX’s credit, they were super upfront and they called us and they said this was too good of an opportunity to pass up, but we would love you and Kevin to be back together again and call this year as the A crew and call the best game that we have.”

“It’s a great opportunity for me to do it. I don’t know if it’s going to be one year or two years. For the time being, I’m going to go out there and try to have a great year and give people a fun broadcast.”

Since Olsen decided to join FOX after his playing career, he has always wanted call the Super Bowl and be on the top team. It is something he told the network at the beginning of his broadcast career:

“I always dreamed and I always aspired and I told the folks at FOX from the beginning, listen, I’m getting into this because one day I want to call the top game, I want to aspire to call Super Bowls and playoff games and what-not, but I understand there’s a little bit of a process involved in growing into that….Never in a million years did I think in Year 2 I would get an opportunity to call a Super Bowl.”

While Olsen will be analyzing some of Tom Brady’s games this year, Brady will not be on his mind and he understands that this is a business:

“Other than when we call Bucs games, not really at all. I can’t control all that stuff. Tom Brady is Tom Brady. I get it. I’m not naïve. I understand the way things operate. I’m going to go out there and do what me and Kevin did last year and try to even get better. If that day comes, that I get replaced by Tom, I get it. In the meantime, I’m not going to be looking over my shoulder and be afraid to mess up. I’m just going to let it rip…I have no hard feelings or animosity towards Tom. I have all of the respect in the world for Tom.”

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Sports TV News

The NFL Still Considering Multiple Offers For Sunday Ticket

The NFL has had the respective bids of Disney, Apple and Amazon for weeks now. DirecTV has not bid for the package but has stated it is willing to partner with the new rightsholder for a potential deal.

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Sunday Ticket Negotiations

DirecTV currently has the rights to Sunday Ticket. That deal expires at the end of this upcoming football season. The NFL is expected to make a boatload of cash when they decide which media organization gets the next rights to the package. The only question is… who will that be?

Alex Sherman of CNBC reports that the NFL has had the respective bids of Disney, Apple and Amazon for weeks now. DirecTV has decided not bid for the package. However, they are interested in partnering with the new rightsholder for a potential deal. DirecTV knows that Sunday Ticket is a staple in bars and restaurants and is interested in maintaining those relationships.

Outside of the bar/restaurant industry, success has been limited for the satellite provider with the football package. Fewer than two million subscribers signed up for Sunday Ticket each year which made the package a money-loser for the satellite TV provider.

According to the report, the NFL wants more than $2 billion for the rights and a stake in NFL Media, which is being packaged with Sunday Ticket. Also on the table is the NFL’s mobile rights. The league’s previous mobile agreement with Verizon has ended.

An interesting piece of the negotiations is Sunday Ticket price. According to the report, a buyer would have limited flexibility on pricing. The NFL signed contracts with CBS and Fox and within the framework of those deals, language mandates Sunday Ticket have a premium price. That’s to prevent loss of viewers from the networks that feature local market Sunday afternoon games. So essentially, the price is the price for the consumer.

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F1 Renews With ESPN For U.S. Media Rights

ESPN was reportedly in a three-way bidding battle with Amazon and Comcast. According to the report, F1 told both Amazon and Comcast on Friday that they had decline to accept either one’s offer.

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F1 ESPN

The racing series F1 has decided to stick with ESPN through 2025.

ESPN was reportedly in a three-way bidding battle with Amazon and Comcast. According to the report, F1 told both Amazon and Comcast on Friday that they had decline to accept either one’s offer.

The reported value of the three-year contract is set to pay F1 $75-90M per year for the U.S. media rights. Amazon had offered to pay roughly $100M per year, with the right to sublicense to a linear broadcast network. Comcast’s offer was similar to ESPN’s in terms of value and the structure. They also wanted to put select races on it’s streaming service, Peacock.

Netflix was in on the negotiations, as well. The makers of Drive to Survive, the streaming series that many credit with the sport’s explosion in popularity in recent years, wasn’t close on on their financial offer. Also, it seems F1 executives were not ready to put all of its races on a streaming service just yet.

Currently, F1 receives $5M per year for ESPN to broadcast it’s races. ESPN has grabbed about 1.0 million viewers per race. That makes F1 a more than viable option for the network to invest into again. ESPN will be able to put a small number of races on its ESPN+ streaming service exclusively. The vast majority being on ABC or ESPN.

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Skip Bayless Says He And Stephen A. Smith ‘Sorted Out’ Their Disagreement

“Brothers fight. We have fought before. I’m assuming we will fight again.”

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Skip Bayless

Stephen A. Smith and Skip Bayless were locked in a war of words last week following the First Take host’s appearance on JJ Redick’s Old Man and the Three podcast.

The origins of their partnership were discussed and Bayless admitted he did not like the way Smith characterized the state of First Take before he arrived on set. Smith insisted that Bayless simply misunderstood what he meant by saying that he was told the show needed him.

Over the weekend, Skip Bayless says he and Stephen A. Smith got together at the Bayless home in California to talk things out in private.

“He was in LA, he came over, we sat by the pool,” he said on the latest episode of The Skip Bayless Show. “It wasn’t the easiest conversation for a while, but we slowly but surely sorted it out. We got through it, and we have been through so much together.”

Bayless reiterated that he considers Smith a brother. They love each other. That doesn’t mean they are always going to remember events the same way or see eye-to-eye all the time.

“Brothers fight. We have fought before. I’m assuming we will fight again.”

Fighting doesn’t mean the relationship is fractured. In fact, Skip Bayless was adamant that he remains closer to Smith than he is to most people in his life.

“I don’t trust easily because of the way I was raised, but I do trust Stephen Anthony Smith. Trust him with my life. Always have and always will. I trust he will always be there for me, and you better believe I will always be there for him.”

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