NBC Drops Ball


Now that it is suiting up once again for the NFL starting lineup starting in the fall, NBC will no longer be carrying arena football.

"The Arena Football League and NBC Sports have failed to reach an agreement to extend their broadcasting contract," said the AFL and NBC. "The AFL will immediately begin broadcast discussions with numerous organizations."

AFL is said to be in talks with a number of outlets, though apparently not CBS, for national or regional carriage of its 16 games and four playoff rounds including the Arena Bowl.

The games, played indoors in the NFL off season, had never taken off for NBC, with the season averaging a 1.1 rating its first season and a .9 its last season, including a .7 for its version of the Super Bowl June 11. The Peacock struck the deal before it got back in the NFL game with the Sunday night package.

NBC had paid no rights fee for the games, instead entering into a revenue sharing agreement with the league.The league had had a two-year deal with NBC that started in the '03 season and was extended for two more years until 2006.

The AFL is looking to announce a new partner or partners within the next 60-90 days, according to a source.