Debate Continues Over Protests’ Impact on NFL Ratings, But Vin Scully Won’t Be Watching

Debate Continues Over Protests’ Impact on NFL Ratings, But Vin Scully Won’t Be Watching

During an even at the Pasadena Civic Center, former LA Dodger announcer Vin Scully said he will never watch another NFL game again. Scully told the audience:

“I am so disappointed. I used to love, during the fall and winter, to watch the NFL on Sunday. And it’s not that I’m some great patriot. I was in the Navy for a year. Didn’t go anywhere. Didn’t do anything. But I have overwhelming respect and admiration for anyone who puts on a uniform and goes to war. So the only thing I can do in my little way is not to preach. I will never watch another NFL game.”

This statements comes the same week that the Goodell deposition was announced and network execs announced that several had threatened to pull their ads unless the league put an end to anthem protests.

That last announcement came from Linda Yaccarino, chairman of advertising sales and client partnerships at NBCUniversal. During an event moderated by Adweek, Ms Yaccarino stated that their network had received several complaint:

“There is a list of advertisers that have made themselves very clear: ‘If you continue to cover the political coverage of the issue, we will not be part of the NFL’. Think about it – they have half the country that is cheering about that and half the country that is emailing them saying, ‘Don’t do that.’ That’s a real thing… I don’t think there’s any way to prove it, but I do think it has affected the ratings.”

However, CBS’ Les Moonves was at the even and he didn’t seem too worried. “I don’t know of one sponsor that has pulled out of any spot that they had,” said Moonves. “I don’t think it’s affecting advertising or their desire one iota.”

Of course, while individual viewers like Vin Scully may be tuning out, I have a hard time believing that football’s core audience is truly affected one way or the other. If you’re willing to give up on football altogether because of a few people kneeling, then I’d guess you probably weren’t watching that much football to begin with.