Home News Why so many primetime games? NFL executives believe Jets ‘owe us one’

Why so many primetime games? NFL executives believe Jets ‘owe us one’



A year ago, after Aaron Rodgers was acquired in a trade with the Packers, the Jets received six national television games.

But Rodgers tore his Achilles four plays into his Gang Green debut against the Buffalo Bills and missed the rest of the 2023 season.

Now the NFL is banking on the Jets being a contender with Rodgers returning from injury. On Wednesday, the league released the 2024 schedule for all 32 teams. The Jets once again received six national TV games, but this time the games come during the first 11 weeks of the season.

“It’s an awful lot of primetime games early in the season,” Mike North, the NFL’s vice president of broadcast partners, said on a video conference with reporters on Thursday morning. “But, obviously, I feel like Jets kind of owe us one.

“We had this conversation a year ago. All of us were all in on the Jets. For that guy [Rodgers] to last four plays was disheartening for many of us.”

The Jets played in five primetime games a year ago plus the Black Friday game against the Miami Dolphins. However, the Jets were less attractive to NFL fans following Rodgers’ injury.

Gang Green finished 7-10 and third in the AFC East without Rodgers. The Jets join the San Francisco 49ers and Dallas Cowboys with six national television games apiece. The 49ers are the defending NFC champions and the Cowboys are always a huge draw and are coming off an NFC East division title.

“There’s no question we’re counting on them,” North said about the Jets. “Hopefully [Rodgers] stays healthy, and hopefully, they’re relevant.

“That is a lot of primetime early in the season, and it may not be the end of it. I think they play the Rams, Seattle, Miami and Buffalo down the stretch. There’s certainly even more of an opportunity to find their way to national television if they’re relevant.”

If the Jets are playoff contenders with Rodgers back under center, the late-season games against the Bills and Dolphins are candidates to get flexed. Gang Green will visit Buffalo in Week 17 and host Miami in Week 18. The Jets game against the Dolphins has the option of being played on Saturday, Jan. 4 or Sunday, Jan. 5.

Gang Green’s scheduling is challenging in the front and back half of the season. The Jets will begin their season on Monday Night Football against the 49ers before visiting the Tennessee Titans in Week 2 on a short week. Then they will play on a short week again in Week 3 on Thursday Night Football against the New England Patriots.

The Jets will end their season playing seven consecutive games against teams that finished over .500 in 2023. Four of those games will be against teams who made the playoffs.

In other league scheduling news, the NFL scheduled two games on Christmas, both of which will air on Netflix.

The Kansas City Chiefs will visit the Pittsburgh Steelers, and the Baltimore Ravens will play at the Houston Texans. Netflix will also stream at least one game in 2026 as part of the three-year deal announced Wednesday.

“We got a lot of feedback from the market,” Hans Schroeder, the NFL executive vice president of media distribution, said. “Even before we get into the Netflix view on global — that on Christmas Day, for those that celebrate that holiday, you get into post 8 p.m.

“You get into dinners, you get into some travel, you get into some other things.”

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