Packers-Eagles in Brazil: the NFL exploited this loophole in the broadcast rules to schedule a rare Friday game


The first NFL game in Brazil is finally set. Two months after announcing that the Philadelphia Eagles would be the home team in Brazil, the NFL revealed Wednesday that their opponent will be the Green Bay Packers for the game, which begins on Friday, September 6.

The fact that the game is being played in Brazil is not the only unique feature of the game. It is also notable that the match will be played on a FRIDAY during week 1. The reason why this is notable is that the match will score the first time in 54 years that the NFL scheduled a Friday game during the opening week of the season.

The last time this happened was in 1970, when the Rams beat the Cardinals, 34-13, in a game played on a Friday night in Los Angeles.

One of the reasons there has been such a gap between Friday games is that it is not easy for the NFL to schedule a Friday game during the regular season. In fact, the only reason this is happening this year is because the league is taking advantage of a broadcast loophole.

Under the Sports Broadcasting Act of 1961, the NFL is not allowed to televise games on Friday or Saturday from the second weekend in September to the second weekend in December (these two days were reserved for high school and college football). That’s why you don’t see any Saturday games on the NFL schedule until after the season.

So what does this mean for this year?

The NFL always begins the season on the first Thursday after Labor Day. If Labor Day falls on September 3 or later, then the first NFL weekend will be the second weekend in September and Friday games will not be allowed, but since Labor Day is on the 2 September this year opened the door to Labor Day. The NFL will play Friday (September 6).

If you’re wondering how the NFL was able to play a Black Friday game in 2023, the league also took advantage of a loophole in the broadcast rules to make it happen. Under the Sports Broadcast Act, the NFL is ALLOWED to schedule a game on Friday provided a substantial portion of the game is completed by 6 p.m. local time, which is why the Dolphins and Jets started at 3 p.m. ET on Black Friday in 2023.

With Labor Day expected to fall on September 1, 2025, the NFL could possibly play another opening game Friday in another foreign country to start the season.

For the Brazil game, the NFL will likely move it to prime time, but the official kickoff time likely won’t be announced until the schedule is released in May.

For now, here’s what we know: The Eagles will travel to São Paulo, Brazil, to open their season against the Packers in a game that begins on Friday, September 6 and will be streamed. exclusively on Peacock.

This game will be only the third time since 2010 that the NFL has hosted a game on a Friday.


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