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This is why analysts expect NFL ratings will improve

As Madison Avenue tunes into the NFL season opener Thursday night to see if the country’s No. 1 sport can regain its ratings mojo, one prominent media analyst on Wednesday offered a bullish report.
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No election, no problem, said Michael Nathanson, who said the much-chewed-over 8 percent slide in the NFL’s TV ratings last year was caused in large part by the nasty presidential election.

Without such a national distraction, Nathanson, of MoffettNathanson, is forecasting ratings of NBC’s Sunday Night Football will increase 5 percent and that ESPN’s Monday Night Football will see its TV viewership rise by 11 percent.

The NFL’s TV partners 锟斤拷 ESPN, Fox, NBC and CBS 锟斤拷 depend on football to draw in viewers throughout the rest of their schedules.

The NFL games and the shoulder programming leading into them accounted for 59 percent of Fox’s gross ratings points, or GRPs, during the 2016 season, 28 percent at NBC, 26 percent at ESPN and 26 percent at CBS.

Rather than make a rule forcing players to stand, owners hope to convince them to change sides, according to Goodell.

We have six or seven players that are involved with the protest at this point, and what we try to do is deal with the underlying issue and understand what it is they are protesting and what we can do to address that, he said. Goodell wouldn’t say how the league would react if an individual team disciplined a player for kneeling.

I can’t deal with hypotheticals right now. We will deal with those issues if they come up, he said.

The league huddled with the NFL Players Association union Tuesday to hash out ways the players can have an in-season platform for social-justice advocacy that doesn’t involve kneeling during the anthem, which critics 锟斤拷 including President Trump 锟斤拷 claim disrespects the flag and the military.

Trump took to Twitter early Wednesday to slam the league in anticipation it would not change its rules on kneeling.

The NFL has decided that it will not force players to stand for the playing of our National Anthem. Total disrespect for our great country! he tweeted.
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Game Womens Ryan Callahan Jersey He later fired off another angry tweet after the league’s press Adam Joseph Duhe Jersey conference wrapped.