Perry: The Krafts “weren’t shocked” by Monday Night Football flex
The Patriots have officially become the first team to be flexed out of a Monday Night Football game after their Week 15 matchup with the Chiefs was moved from Monday to Sunday. Phil Perry of NBC Sports Boston tells Zolak & Bertrand why Robert and Jonathan Kraft weren’t necessarily shocked by the game being moved out of primetime:
“This is something that Robert Kraft has wanted…”
“I’ve talked to a few people who would have some insight to this. And the first thing I would say is I don’t believe The Krafts were shocked by this. And I don’t believe they were flipping furniture over this either or chucking cell phones at the wall. They would have been informed that this was a possibility. They knew this was a possibility given where the team sits record-wise. And so to think that they were stunned is not my understanding of it. Now, of course it’s not what you’re looking for. You’re 2-9 in the league and the league is the one that makes the final decision on this. The league has determined that they would rather not have the product that you have been putting out there on the field week to week on a national television scale. So that hurts.
“Now, I would say there is a silver lining to this, if you want to call it that if you’re Robert, which I didn’t consider ahead of time. But I think it’s important to note– he is the chair of the broadcast committee for the NFL. Great relationships with all of these network CEOs, heads of these networks that air all these games. So he has in the past, this past offseason specifically, pushed for more flexibility for the networks in flexing games, not just from Sunday to Sunday, but having even more flexibility than that and being able to go, as is the case here from Monday to Sunday or even Thursday to Sunday. And so there is an element of a league-wide benefit to having one of these games happen this year. It wasn’t guaranteed to happen. But now you get the trial balloon. And I think this is sort of a perfect storm kind of game where if you’re Robert Kraft and you’re among the owners that were pushing for more flexibility for the networks and you want to continue to foster those relationships and you want to keep this thing going. There is a silver lining in that. Okay, let’s just see how this goes.
“It is not a good situation to be bumped off of Monday Night Football because you’re that bad. But from a league perspective, this is something that Robert Kraft has wanted and now he gets it. And if he didn’t want this game to be flexed, what I’ve been told is it probably wouldn’t have happened. Not that he asked for it. Not that he pushed for his team to get flexed out. But if he was kicking and screaming that his team was bumped off of Monday Night Football, it probably would not have happened.”