CBS had this Bills game as its 'top request' to broadcast in 2024 NFL season

Jim Nantz and Tony Romo will again be on the call when the Buffalo Bills and Kansas City Chiefs face off in the 2024 NFL season—here's why.
Dec 10, 2023; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen (17) talks with
Dec 10, 2023; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen (17) talks with / Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports

There was no Tony Romo-esque “I don’t know, Jim” indecisiveness when CBS was tasked with informing the NFL of the games it most wished to broadcast in the 2024 NFL campaign—the network wanted to be the one to air the Buffalo Bills’ regular season clash with the Kansas City Chiefs.

Matchups between the Bills and Chiefs have been box office in recent years, this a testament to the general quality of each team and of their respective quarterbacks. Buffalo and Kansas City have met seven times since the 2020 NFL season—four times in the regular season and three times in the playoffs. The Bills are 3-1 in their in-season contests (winning the last three) whereas the Chiefs have taken all three postseason clashes.

The games, generally speaking, are tightly contested (with the last four finishing within one score) and widely viewed; Buffalo’s January 2022 AFC Divisional Round contest with Kansas City averaged 42.7 million viewers throughout and peaked at 51.697 million, per BuffaloBills.com. These numbers were supplanted by the Divisional Round matchup that took place in January of this year, as the game became the first Divisional Round matchup in NFL history to average over 50 million viewers at 50.393 million, per CBS. It peaked at 56.25 million.

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People demonstrably want to watch the Bills and Chiefs face-off, which is why CBS made the contest its “top request” in the 2024 season, per the AP’s Joe Reedy. All but two of Buffalo’s contests with Kansas City this decade have been broadcast on CBS; its 2020 regular season matchup aired on FOX while its 2021 Sunday Night Football contest aired, expectedly, on NBC.

“We felt like as the home of the AFC, we should continue to tell that story,” CBS Sports CEO and President David Berson said of airing the Week 11 clash, per Reedy.

The game being the network’s “top request” also sheds a bit of light on why it’s not taking place in a primetime slot; per Reedy, the 4:25 p.m. slot is the “most-viewed game of the week.” The NFL granted CBS its request to broadcast the game, and the network is putting the contest in as high-profile of a window as it can.

On-field and ratings fireworks will certainly be afoot when Josh Allen and the Bills host the defending Super Bowl champions in Week 11; we already know Tony Romo has the date circled on his calendar.


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Kyle Silagyi

KYLE SILAGYI