Football fans deserved better than Redskins - Giants debacle
Sunday's football game between the Washington Redskins and New York Giants was pretty much over before it started. The Giants won the coin toss, marched down field and scored. By halftime it was 21-0 and at the end of the third quarter it was 28-7.
Although the outcome of the game was never in doubt, Fox stuck with it to the bitter end. Now, in New York and Washington, D.C., the network had no choice. Those are the two home-team markets, although odds are a lot of Redskins fans tuned out at halftime.
But what about the rest of the country that had to see that blowout, including us folks here in Los Angeles? At the same time that the Giants were pasting the Redskins, the Super Bowl champion New Orleans Saints were in a tight contest with the Cincinnati Bengals. Fox might have done viewers outside of New York and Washington a favor and switched to the more competitive game.
A Fox Sports spokesman said the network has to know in advance whether it might switch games due to technical reasons -- something to do with how commercials are inserted into the games. Given how poorly the Skins have been playing, it might have been a safe bet for Fox to assume it might have the chance to pull out early.
Fox also made the decision to showcase the Dallas Cowboys - Indianapolis Colts game Sunday. Though it was a great game that went into overtime before Dallas snuck away with the upset, a case could have been made that the match between the Atlanta Falcons and Tampa Bay Buccaneers would have been the better pick.
Both the Falcons and Bucs are battling for playoff spots and playing really good ball right now while the Cowboys are out of it and the Colts are struggling. Yes, the Cowboys and Colts have bigger national followings, but it might be nice if Fox showcases teams that are on the rise and playing well that are deserving of national exposure.
Perhaps soon networks will find a way to switch more easily between good and bad games. After all, if DirecTV can offer every game that's on, how tough can it be for a broadcast network to give the better games center stage?
-- Joe Flint
Photo: Redskins quarterback Donovan McNabb can hardly contain his enthusiasm. Credit: Jim McIsaac/Getty Images.