FavreWatch lands in the Big Apple

Photo courtesy of Fox Sports.com.

The naked city just got one more story to add to its eight million.

Television’s most fascinating drama landed in New York City on Thursday with the trade of Green Bay Packer Brett Favre to the New York Jets, ending his sixteen-year run as the Cheeseheads‘ quarterback.

Favre originally retired from the game last March, and the Packers moved on and made Aaron Rodgers as their new starting QB. But Favre unretired recently, and was reinstated by the NFL on Monday. With ESPN and other outlets watching his every move, Favre landed at Packers’ training camp on Sunday, but returned to his home in Mississippi on Tuesday disgruntled.

Now, he is the quarterback for the Jets – a team that hasn’t had a major superstar since Joe Namath.

The move of Favre to the Jets – an AFC team – is good news for CBS, who air the majority of Jets games since it has rights to the AFC package. Even better has for CBS, its O&O in New York (WCBS-TV) stands to see both a ratings and revenue increase thanks to Favre’s arrival.

CBS has twelve Jets games scheduled this fall, while Fox has two, and ESPN and the NFL Network have one each. However, this could change if NBC decides to grab some games for prime-time late in the season if the Jets are in playoff contention.

Traditionally, the AFC games have been lower rated than NFC games – which has been the case since the days NBC owned the AFC package and CBS had the NFC. But Favre’s arrival in New York could change things, and in recent years, AFC games’ average ratings have caught up to those for the NFC games on Fox.

If you look at this from a Chicago perspective, the Jets are like the Chicago White Sox – a second team in a market in the same sport that often play in the shadow of another team. The New York Giants – who share their stadium with the Jets – are like the Chicago Cubs – a team with a loyal fan base all across the country, and guaranteed high ratings whenever they are on national TV.

Of course, there are differences: In the last fifty years, the Giants have won numerous championships, including last year’s Super Bowl; the Cubs haven’t won in a century (although they may be on their way to ending the drought.) The Jets haven’t won a championship since Super Bowl III in 1969; The White Sox won the World Series in 2005, ending a 88-year drought.

Whatever the case, Favre’s move to the Big Apple may not look good to the experts on sports talk radio and on the Worldwide Leader in B.S. But to CBS – where the only number they care about is on those Nielsen rating sheets – it’s a very good deal.

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