Californians Hoping Raiders Game Stays Blacked Out So They Can Watch Colts And Pats

Here’s an odd situation. There are only two markets that will not be able to see the much-anticipated Colts/Pats game on Sunday, Houston and Cleveland—unless the Raiders manage to sell out their game and lift the NFL blackout. If they do, San Francisco will have to watch the Raiders. And they’re not real happy about it.

The Raiders have until 1:15 p.m today to sell the tickets. Will they do it? If they do, many Bay Area pro football fans will be “crying in their beer,” according to the SF Chronicle.

Which would you rather watch? Raiders (2-5) vs Texans (3-5) or the ultimate Brady/Manning showdown?

“We are always interested in showing the Raiders’ game because that’s mainly what people want to see,” said local station spokesperson Akilah Monifa said. “But at this time, it doesn’t look like that will happen. It doesn’t look like it’s going to sell out, although that could change.”

The Chronicle does a really excellent job trying to explain the “Byzentine” NFL blackout rules, so if you’re ready for a headache, head on over. Patriots match ups are drawing a lot of eyes this year, and stations that don’t show the big ones are besieged with angry phone calls.

Although it was not aired by a Bay Area station, the Patriots-Cowboys game was the most watched TV show in the nation that week. Its audience of 29.1 million viewers dwarfed that of the second-most watched show, “CSI,” by 9 million viewers.

It also was the most-watched regular-season Sunday NFL game in a decade, drawing slightly fewer than the 29.7 million who watched the Cowboys-49ers game on Nov. 10, 1996.

The Patriots-Colts telecast should beat those numbers. Even without the Bay Area, it will be available to 94 percent of the country. The only markets that definitely won’t get it are Houston and Cleveland.

“The regular-season average for a Sunday NFL game was 16.3 million last year,” league spokesman Seth Palansky said. “This game is likely to come in around double the average.”



Edit Your Comment

  1. Abusiveelusive says:

    I didn’t even know about the blackout policies until I read this and looked it up on Wikipedia.

  2. QuarterlyProphet says:

    Any Cardinals fan who has the unfortunate fate of living in Arizona knows these rules quite well, I assure you. There have been many times when Card fans have gone through multi year droughts without seeing a home game on their television.

  3. badhatharry says:

    They can’t go to some sports bar that has DirecTV and watch it?

  4. Youthier says:

    Am I the only NFL fan that could care less about the Colts and the Patriots?

  5. Murph1908 says:

    Yes. It is much more pleasant to sit in a smoky bar, on an uncomfortable chair or stool, and be forced to pay for overpriced food and drinks than it is to enjoy the game at home.

    Some people enjoy going to the bar for the games. Others do not. Yes, they could go there, but in these markets, they would have no choice if they wanted to see the game.

  6. Murph1908 says:

    You actually might be.

  7. UpsetPanda says:

    @HeyHermano: Maybe I’m one of the only non-football fans who is kind of interested in this game, like I was interested in the world series, just because it was riveting to me.

  8. @HeyHermano: Yes. Yes you are.

  9. CumaeanSibyl says:

    @Murph1908: Given the prices I’d have to pay around here for cable, I’d much rather watch my games at a sports bar, where my money also buys me beer and grande nacho platters.

  10. Meg Marco says:

    @HeyHermano: Even I, who dislike both teams, will watch. So yes.

  11. stephenjames716 says:

    I can’t wait for this game….sunday ticket is the way to go!

  12. adamondi says:

    @QuarterlyProphet: I didn’t realize there were enough long-time Cardinals fans to really raise a ruckus.

    At any rate, I am really excited about the Pats vs. the Colts. This should be the best game of the season, since there is no way for the Pats and the Colts to play each other in the Super Bowl without one of them switching to the NFC.

  13. stubblyhead says:

    Can’t say I blame them. If I lived in the bay area I wouldn’t want to see the Raiders play either. Now let’s work on getting us some Chargers games in the Pacific Northwest once in a while, huh?

  14. supra606 says:

    @HeyHermano: One more “yes” vote…

  15. iamlost26 says:

    I was really (REALLY) sad when I found out I would be watching the Chargers (whom I love, but still) instead of the Dallas-Patriots game during week 6. I grew up loving the Cowboys, and so it pained me to miss it during such a pivotal game. Luckily the Chargers gave it to LT every play and so the clock ran down a lot faster than in the Cowboys game, and I ended up getting to see the final quarter.

  16. Franklin Comes Alive! says:

    Watching football was horrible when I lived in the Bay Area a couple of years ago. Lots of weekends we had nothing to watch but 49rs (terrible) and Raiders (even worse). I miss a lot of things about living there, but not the NFL viewing situation.

  17. IndyJaws says:

    @HeyHermano: Add another one to the mix…

  18. Adam291 says:

    If you google around enough, you can find some sites and people who stream live games…

  19. Canadian Impostor says:

    @CaffeinatedSquint: Speaking as a Red Sox fan, how could you have been interested in the World Series?

    The ALCS was thrilling, the World Series was a massacre.

  20. kimsama says:

    @HeyHermano: Sorry, another yes. And I’m a Steelers girl.

  21. Meg Marco says:

    @Franklin Comes Alive!: New York is the same way. Giants and Jets constantly. Ugh.

  22. stinerman says:

    Haha! They told me it was crazy to live between Toledo and Cleveland, but who’s laughing now that I can get extra football games on broadcast TV?

  23. mconfoy says:

    I felt that way about the Patriots when I moved to Boston before they hired Parcells in the early 90’s. Patriots will cover the spread has they have every game this season.

  24. gruffydd says:

    @HeyHermano: Yes.

  25. HooFoot says:


  26. UpsetPanda says:

    @Canadian Impostor: I don’t watch baseball, what can I say? Fiancee is a rabid baseball fan, but I’m not a sports person. So his excitement caught onto me, and I was fairly riveted, especially when it looked like the Rockies were catching up in game 3. Also, I admit that the girly side of me thinks Papelbon is funny. What can I say, goofy guys are fun to watch.

  27. adambadam says:


    But in CA you can’t smoke in bars ;)

  28. Youthier says:

    Damn it, SOMEONE else that watches football must have no interest in this game!

  29. JadedScientist says:
  30. LTS! says:

    I think someone’s missing something here…

    If the game is blacked out in SF/Oakland then CBS cannot show another game. So it doesn’t matter either way, viewers in the Bay area are gettin’ nothing.

    San francisco is in Atlanta at 1pm, that game will be on FOX and is the single game Fox can air in the Bay area market. Oakland is at home, which means they sell out they are on CBS, otherwise everyone in the Bay area gets alternate programming and not an NFL game. So no Colts vs. Pats no matter what. As far as I can tell there is a single CBS station for the Bay Area. Who knows, maybe it works different there but I know being in the primary Buffalo market (60 miles away) if it’s blacked out.. it’s infomercials for us.

  31. Kwik80 says:

    @LTS!: CBS has the doubleheader game this weekend. Since Oakland didn’t sell out, they CBS still gets to air one game in the 4pm slot. (Had San Francisco been playing a 4pm game, then you’d be right.) No game on CBS at 1, Pats-Colts on at 4.

    As of right now, for the record, there are only 2 markets NOT getting Pats-Colts. Houston (the only market that Texans-Raiders will be aired in), and Cleveland (Seahawks at Browns late) Every other market in the country is getting Pats-Colts at 4.

  32. mconfoy says:

    @LTS!: Hate to be a smart ass, but when you are so wrong that you are clearly making it up, what can I say. I now live in DC area, so no games have been blacked out here since 1966. However I did live in Boston, I did live outside of Detroit. And when their games were blacked out I was happy because they would either put on a team that played that team often or if not available, the best available game on. Do you possibly think that CBS or Fox would pay that kind of money and not broadcast a game that day in the Boston area? I only ask because you did not give your made up answer very much thought it seems.

  33. sassypizzazz says:


    I don’t like either the Colts or the Pats, so I don’t really care about the game in the sense of rooting for one team over the other. However, as a person who loves football, I will probably watch. It’s going to be the best played game this season. And, since so many recent Super Bowls have been boring, this match-up will totally make up for that.

  34. Nemesis_Enforcer says:

    @HeyHermano: I am a mild fan if there a game on I will watch if I am not busy, but I don’t plan my day around it.

    Last week was hard cause I hate both Dallas and the patriots. I had to cheer for the pats cause I hate dallas more.

    This week is easy go Colts! I might actually make time to watch..maybe. God I would hate to have only the raisders to watch. Its bad enough that all the raider fans here in L.A. act so juvinele but to actually be in Oakland…man that sucks for them.

  35. tmanAg08 says:

    Some of us in Texas are pissed as well. I live in College Station (about 45 min. NW of Houston), and we don’t get the Pats-Colts game either. Our local station manager attempted to get the big game on a cable channel, and keep the Texans-Raiders on the broadcast station. Initially it looked like that would work, but then the NFL intervened and denied the plan.

    Our local message board discussion: []

    And the story on Digg: []