NFL teams approve suspension of local blackout policy for 2015

0:32 | NFL
NFL suspends local blackout policy for 2015
Monday March 23rd, 2015

On Monday, NFL teams approved the one-year suspension of the league's local television blackout policy for the 2015 preseason and regular season, the league announced.

The NFL's blackout policy, active since the 1970s, mandates that a game must be blacked out on local TV markets in the event that fewer than 85 percent of available seats have been sold 72 hours prior to kickoff. That deadline could be extended if a team believed it was close to selling out the game.

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There were zero regular-season blackouts announced last season and two in 2013, reports NFL Network's Ian Rapoport.

For comparison, roughly half of the NFL games in the 1970s were blacked out because not enough tickets were sold.

The NFL will reevaluate the rule after this season.

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Last September, the Federal Communications Commission repealed its sports blackout rules. The FCC's move stopped its reinforcement of the NFL's blackout policy, but it did not affect the league's ability to enforce it.

Mike Fiammetta

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