Five U.S. Senators Calling For End to NFL’s Blackout Rule – Would No Blackouts = No Attendance?

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Would an end to the blackout rule kill NFL attendance in places besides Tampa? (Mandatory Credit: Phil Sears-US PRESSWIRE)

If a group of five U.S. Senators get their way, the NFL’s television blackout rule could be a thing of the past. As Bills fans are well aware, NFL games that are not sold out within72 hours of kickoff are blacked out on local television in the home city and the surrounding area. This rule has affected many Bills games in recent years, including the final three home games of the 2011 season.

Monday was the deadline for public comments on a petition by the Sports Fans Coalition to rescind the blackout rule, which also prohibits cable and satellite systems from carrying a sporting event that is blacked out on local broadcast television stations.

Five Democratic senators were among those who filed comments with the FCC Monday calling for an end to blackouts.

“These blackouts are ruining the experience of rooting for the home team and are unjustly hurting fans,” wrote Sens. Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut,

of Ohio, Tom Harkin of Iowa, Frank Lautenberg of New Jersey and Debbie Stabenow of Michigan.

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