ESPN Extends MNF Deal, Doesn't Get Super Bowl or Playoffs

By Noah Davis 

John Ourand at SportsBusiness Daily reports that ESPN and the NFL reached the framework of a deal that will keep Monday Night Football on the Worldwide Leader through the 2022-2023 season. While specifics are still being worked out, ESPN will pay a 40 percent increase to between $1.8 and $1.9 billion per season. (So almost $20 billion total. Who called that?)

Neither ESPN nor ABC will be in the rotation to show the Super Bowl, and the Bristol, CT station won’t get any playoff games in the near future. There were rumors that the NFL would allow one wild card game to leave network television. That still may happen, but not immediately. ESPN will retain rights to the draft and highlights packages.

ESPN is paying a premium for being on cable.Ourand writes:

Even before this negotiation, ESPN was paying the league much more than any of the NFL’s other TV partners. ESPN’s annual payout of $1.1 billion dwarfs the annual rights fees paid by Fox ($720 million), CBS ($620 million) and NBC ($603 million). DirecTV pays about $1 billion a year for exclusive access to Sunday Ticket.

As if we needed more proof that the NFL is an unstoppable juggernaut.