NFL offers help for games blacked out
The NFL announced Thursday that games blacked out in local markets will be seen in its entirety on a delayed basis for free on the league’s Web site, NFL.com. The games will be available in the affected markets starting at midnight on the day of the game and continue to be available for 72 hours, except during Monday Night Football.
In a statement, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said, "We understand that the economy is limiting some families and corporations from buying as many game tickets as they had previously. These free re-broadcasts on NFL.com will allow our fans that can’t get to a blacked-out game an opportunity to see the entire game."
Generally, if a game is not sold out 72 hours before kickoff, it cannot be seen on television within a 75-mile radius of the stadium. Only nine of the league's 256 games were blacked out last season, but that number is expected to rise in 2009. Goodell has ruled out the league lifting the blackout policy this season and said the worst-case scenario is that 80 percent of the league's games will be sold out.