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The NFL wants the Orioles to reschedule a game to accommodate the Ravens’ season opener

Mar 19, 2013, 9:44 AM EDT

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The Orioles play the White Sox on Thursday, September 5. It’s a night game. It has to be a night game because both the Orioles and the White Sox are coming in to Baltimore off the road following night games and thus won’t even be getting into town until the wee hours of Thursday morning.

Problem: September 5 is supposed to be the Ravens’ opener, and for the past decade the defending Super Bowl champs have opened the season on that Thursday night. Because they play right next door to each other and share a parking lot the games cannot be played at the same time.  Here’s NFL commissioner Roger Goodell’s take on it:

“We are trying to work out an accommodation to allow the Orioles’ game to happen earlier in the afternoon and the Ravens to celebrate their Super Bowl championship with their fans at home on Thursday night. We think that is the right thing. We have agreed to move the game a little bit later in the evening to try to accommodate the baseball game.”

I’m sure he does think that’s the right thing as it benefits the NFL. But it’s not as if the Orioles can unilaterally change the schedule. The White Sox have a say. As does the players’ union, who will not cotton to a day game after a night game when both teams are travelling. And that is the White Sox’ only trip to Baltimore all season.

My guess is that money will be thrown at the Orioles and they’ll agree to a doubleheader that Saturday or something. But it seems that the much fairer solution would be for the NFL to make its schedule in such a way that doesn’t conflict with a baseball schedule that has been set for months.

  1. chill1184 - Mar 19, 2013 at 9:48 AM

    Am I the only one who wants the Orioles to tell Roger Goddell to go screw?

    • DelawarePhilliesFan - Mar 19, 2013 at 9:55 AM

      I wanted the Orioles to tell Goddell to go screw. Then I read the quote. Now I want the Orioles to use much stronger language

    • Old Gator - Mar 19, 2013 at 9:58 AM

      (Raises hand). I second!

    • heyblueyoustink - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:27 AM

      Normally i’d be against such a petty gesture. But since no one gets the chance to tell Emperor Goddell to shove off, i’m all for it.

    • indaburg - Mar 19, 2013 at 12:19 PM

      You’re clearly not alone. My first though: go eff yourself, Goodell.

      (Are you guys purposely spelling it “God”dell because that’s who he thinks he is?)

  2. Kevin S. - Mar 19, 2013 at 9:49 AM

    Didn’t the NFL open on Wednesday night last year? Seems a lot easier to just do that again instead of jamming your way into a set schedule.

    • cktai - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:04 AM

      From what I read, the Ravens offered to play the game on Wednesday, but the NFL/Patriots rejected because its a Jewish holiday, and that would be like playing games at Christmas or Thanksgiving…

      • kopy - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:34 AM

        Yeah, it’s Rosh Hashanah. I don’t know anything about Jewish holidays, but the Ravens’ official Twitter account said they couldn’t play Wednesday because of it.

        Place your Walter Sobchak quotes here.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:43 AM

        but the Ravens’ official Twitter account said they couldn’t play Wednesday because of it.

        Is this really the reason they are objecting to the game? As other’s have mentioned, the NFL has no issues with games on Christmas, and according to note astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson, there’s roughly 15M Jews in the world compared to what, over 1B Christians?

        It sounds more like they needed an excuse to not play the game on Wednesday and decided that Rosh Hashanah was a good enough reason (never mind that if they played a game on Saturday then the Jews wouldn’t watch because it was the Sabbath, but I digress).

      • tolbuck - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:56 AM

        Do you know the last time the NFL played games during Rosh Hashanah?


        Goodell is such a hypocrite.

      • Roger Moore - Mar 19, 2013 at 11:28 AM

        Wow, that’s ridiculous. Jewish baseball players have been playing on Rosh Hashanah for decades. There have been rabbinical rulings about it and everything. Besides, anyone who bothered to check a calendar would see that they have it wrong, and Rosh Hashanah is actually on the Thursday.

      • Kevin S. - Mar 19, 2013 at 11:38 AM

        Jewish holidays/sabbaths begin sundown the night before. Wednesday night is the start of Rosh Hashanah this year.

      • Fruitland Generic Citizen - Mar 19, 2013 at 12:44 PM

        The NFL played a full slate of games on Rosh Hashanah just last year.

        Why do the O’s have to solve a problem they didn’t create? Why are the O’s suddenly the bad guys here? The NFL knew the O’s had a home game Sept. 5 at 7:05, and even a cursory look at the schedule would have shown both teams involved in that game are flying into Baltimore the night before. Playing that game earlier in the day just isn’t an option.

        The NFL has created the problem here, and the onus is on the NFL to solve its own problem. Play the damn game Wednesday night. The NFL played a full day’s schedule on Rosh Hashanah last year. NOW it’s a problem? No, it’s not. Play the game Wednesday and stop being a bully.

        This is like like blaming a kid for the blood on your t-shirt and demanding he buy a new one because you busted his nose while taking his lunch money.

        This isn’t the O’s problem to solve, and they don’t have to solve it. They are well within their rights to stick to a 7:05 start on Sept. 5, and for the team’s own competitive reasons, I hope they do.

      • sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Mar 19, 2013 at 1:18 PM

        Well, Saturday afternoon is still the Jewish Sabbath, so the NFL can’t expect the Oriels/White Sox to play a baseball game then, can they? And Sunday is the Christian Sabbath, so certainly no meaningful sports can happen that day.

    • DD23 - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:35 AM

      I want to say it was a Wednesday because they were working around the Democratic Convention, but that’s from memory. It’s typically on a Thursday. Your point stands, though. Move the Ravens game to Wednesday night and the problem goes away.

      • Kevin S. - Mar 19, 2013 at 11:36 AM

        Yeah, it was moved for Obama’s speech. And while an Orioles-White Sox game is hardly of the same importance as a sitting president’s convention speech during his re-election campaign, the NFL’s world hardly collapsed from moving the game last year.

  3. DelawarePhilliesFan - Mar 19, 2013 at 9:54 AM

    “We think that is the right thing. We have agreed to move the game a little bit later in the evening”

    Is it just me, or does that come off as the royal “We” – as in Goddell?

    What as an ass – but on the other hand, they have a lot o’ Money vested in these NFL Opening Night thingy’s… yea, I think you nailed it Craig. A big gob of money is coming to the teams and players to move things around.

    • hep3 - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:13 AM

      Do you really think Bud Selig, MLB, Peter Angelos and the Orioles can be persuaded by just money?!?!?!?

      Yeah, probably you are correct, but Selig will need a Congressional hearing so he can wring his hands in public.

  4. dowhatifeellike - Mar 19, 2013 at 9:56 AM

    Goodell doesn’t want to play Wednesday because it’s a Jewish holiday.

    Considering that the NFL scheduled games during the World Series, I don’t think any of the MLB interest feel like moving this game.

    As a fan of both teams, I think the Orioles and White Sox should just suck it up and play Thursday afternoon. Fans could go to one game, then walk across the parking lot to the other. It would be an awesome day.

    • mjames1229 - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:05 AM

      Which is funny, because the NFL has never made sure that Christmas Day has been avoided.

    • randomdigits - Mar 19, 2013 at 11:26 AM

      Goodell doesn’t want to play on Wednesday because the ratings will be lower.

      They have never avoided religious holidays in the past.

      • Panda Claus - Mar 19, 2013 at 11:51 AM

        Plus since apparently Robert Kraft is Jewish, he’s probably not wanting the game on Rosh Hashanna either.

        We also have to remember that Kraft is one of the few lucky owners that gets to pull Roger’s marionette strings on a daily basis.

      • Kevin S. - Mar 19, 2013 at 11:59 AM

        Of course, Thursday night is still the second night of Rosh Hashana. Not as important as the first night, especially to more liberal Jews, but still part of the holiday.

  5. joshfrancis50 - Mar 19, 2013 at 9:56 AM

    This pissed me off yesterday when I heard it. Goodell stands there and makes it sound as though its a no brainer that the NFL should trump MLB. He’s touting a “tradition” that’s been in effect for maybe 10 years.

    It would have made a lot more sense if he had positioned it as, “the city and fans of Baltimore deserve this” and blah blah blah rather than narcissistic garble about how bumping the O’s in favor of his NFL franchise being “the right thing to do”.

    For God’s sake, at least try to spin it so it doesn’t look 100% self serving.

    • paperlions - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:18 AM

      Oh, I thought the tradition he was referring to was the ability of money to make problems go away. My bad.

      • joshfrancis50 - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:21 AM

        That is, of course, the greatest of American traditions…

  6. delsj - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:00 AM

    I was hoping for a little more NFL bashing. PFT has been ripping the Orioles for days. The NFL could easily move their game to Wednesday. The NFL says it won’t play it on the 4th because it’s Rosh Hashanah, but the reality is they are used to getting their way and just expect the MLB to kowtow.

    • chill1184 - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:10 AM

      Commentators on PFT seem angry 24/7

      • paperlions - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:20 AM

        ^^ This. ^^

        PFT is a nice source of news, but it is best to ignore comments section.

      • heyblueyoustink - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:33 AM

        Off to war then? “Once more into the breach dear friends, once more?”

      • chacochicken - Mar 19, 2013 at 11:03 AM

        I just read PFT for the racism.

      • scoutsaysweitersisabust - Mar 19, 2013 at 11:11 AM

        I honestly find it amazing how different HBT and PFT commentators are. As a broad generalization, It seems the be the difference between a thinking mans sport and a drooling, mindless, hate-filled, rabid dog who’s taken too many hits to the head. Sure there are exceptions to the rules, but Football fans just seem to revel in their hatred for other teams and fans. Most baseball fans at least can have somewhat civilized discussions (as long as math isn’t brought up that is).

      • DelawarePhilliesFan - Mar 19, 2013 at 11:18 AM

        I agree, scoutsay. It is amazing that the PFT comments are all “boo-yah” related, and no gets into pointed discussions. I mean, there are some heated exchanges on here (and yes, they sometimes invlove me), but I would be the first to admit that those exchanges are grounded in legitimate differences of opinion, e.g. will Hallady be able to turn it around or not

      • sportsdrenched - Mar 19, 2013 at 11:38 AM

        I spend just as much time at PFT during the summer and season as I do here, but rarely comment because it feels like I’m in a room full of 8th graders.

      • Panda Claus - Mar 19, 2013 at 11:46 AM

        Agree about the generalization of PFT commenters. I’ve made comments on both places, but the linear style of commenting that PFT allows (welcome to the year 2000), doesn’t really lend itself to back and forth comments.

        Not to mention the PFT comments sections seem to groom to the internet bully types (not me of course).

        As Yogi used to say, nobody goes there anymore because it’s too crowded.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Mar 19, 2013 at 12:04 PM

        Also the PFT comments not nesting doesn’t really allow for conversations, people just post comments and you never know who’s responding to whom.

    • Cris E - Mar 19, 2013 at 1:23 PM

      They should move Rosh Hashanah to Tuesday.

      And if the Wednesday night demographics make it a poor night for football on TV the NFL should just order more viewers to tune in.

      Why is this an issue? Easy peasy.

  7. BigGreen89 - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:02 AM

    Goodell should just give the Orioles/White Sox players tickets to the game and luxury boxes, and they can play at 4pm, shower and walk over to a 9pm start of the Ravens game.

  8. chip56 - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:05 AM

    I don’t see what the big deal is. The Orioles can still play the game. Given how poorly they draw Raven fans should have no problem finding parking.

  9. nepo784 - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:11 AM

    Who cares about baseball. Such an irrelevant game anyway

    • zzalapski - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:17 AM

      And yet here you are.

    • bigharold - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:24 AM

      “Who cares about baseball. Such an irrelevant game anyway”

      Roger Goodell, .. is that you??

      Based on last year it’s a good bet the O’s will be in the midst of a playoff race so I can see where it’s in their interst to play a day game coming off the road.

      Way to go with the scorched earth pubic relations straegy Rog.

      • heyblueyoustink - Mar 19, 2013 at 11:03 AM

        I don’t always agree with you Har, but when I do, it’ll be because you dropped “pubic relations”, inadvertant or not, but so appropriate for this Nepo troll.

        Hey Nepo, go drive the crown of your head into a concrete wall or something.

  10. chacochicken - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:14 AM

    Football fans appear certain that the NFL is nearing its end with the rules changes, concussions, and lawsuits. Probably time to jump off that sinking ship.

    • dowhatifeellike - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:19 AM

      Apparently using one’s helmet as a battering ram is a key component of the game. At least, that’s what I gather from PFT comments.

      • paperlions - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:22 AM

        The problem is that it is difficult to distinguish between using the helmet as a battering ram and a player lowering his head/shoulders for leverage and to protect himself from hits…..just as it is difficult to distinguish between a tackler “leading with his head” as a point of contact and one making a perfect form tackles (because, you know, the head is kind of always in front as it is typically attached above the shoulders).

      • bigharold - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:32 AM


        You want to reduce the possibility of player using his head as a battering ram simple, .. go back to leather or some other soft compound as a helmet, .. and eliminate face guards. Dis-incentivize turning oneself into a guided missile and you will get fewer head and neck injuries and better fundamental tackling. And, before everybody starts screaming about how crazy that is, .. that is kind of the way it’s done in Rugby.

      • paperlions - Mar 19, 2013 at 11:30 AM

        completely agree Harold, I’ve been an advocate of leather helmets and no face masks for over a decade. It is the armor provided to players that allows them to use their bodies as weapons, and it probably results in more injuries and more devastating injuries than if the players had more simple padding (without the armor component).

  11. psuravens19 - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:22 AM

    As a fan of both the Orioles and Ravens, I first sided with the Ravens when the news broke. Than after getting all the facts about the MLBPA and listening to Goddell, I’m now on the side of MLB and the O’s and think they should tell the NFL to go pound sand. There is no reason they can’t play their game on Wednesday night; they are just trying to flex their muscles and using the religous holiday as an excuse.

  12. zzalapski - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:23 AM

    It would be funny (moreso from a cosmic viewpoint than the players’, admittedly) if the NFL threw a boatload of money for the Orioles and White Sox to play an afternoon game, only to have the travel-weary teams slog through a five-hour, 14-inning affair that totally screws up planning.

  13. geoknows - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:32 AM

    Why don’t the Ravens just play their game on Friday night instead? Or Saturday night?

    • bigharold - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:33 AM

      The O’s Friday game is likely a night game too.

      • deep64blue - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:37 AM

        Yes but they won’t be travelling the night before.

  14. deep64blue - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:38 AM

    Isn’t there an antri-trust rule that stops the NFL playing Friday nights in opposition to High School games?

  15. unclemosesgreen - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:40 AM

    The NFL is the big gorilla still in terms of overall revenues, by around 4.5 billion dollars per annum despite 1/10 as many regular season games. The mere fact that MLB is the NFL’s bitch does not excuse Goodell’s bad form in publicly saying so. It is a fact best left unstated.

    • Kevin S. - Mar 19, 2013 at 11:24 AM

      I think your revenue numbers are a bit off. Last time I checked, NFL was pulling down roughly $9B/year against MLB’s $7B. That might be the gap between NFL and NBA.

  16. 12strikes - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:43 AM

    The NFL played on a Wednesday last year to accommodate BHO’s acceptance speech. It’s the first game of the season, playing on a wednesday is not big deal.

    Usually I cheer for anything that goes against Uncle Bud, but in this case I hope he stands his ground.

  17. nepo784 - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:49 AM

    Football has what baseball wants. Popularity and being relevant again.

    • chacochicken - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:56 AM

      Oh yeah, did you guys play the World Football Classic? Cause we are playing the championship game tonight. Burn…

    • zzalapski - Mar 19, 2013 at 11:08 AM

      It’s amusing whenever football people strut into non-football forums with a superiority complex, as if MLB is competing against the NFL in a zero-sum situation. It’s like they don’t realize the NFL’s popularity is predominantly fueled by gambling, which isn’t intrinsic to the game itself.

  18. sparty99 - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:52 AM

    This really pisses me off. I hope Selig tells Goodell that no amount of money is going to get him to move the game. This is the price they pay for breaking the gentleman’s agreement to not schedule games against the World Series. The NFL is king and that’s fine, but that doesn’t mean that they can lord themselves over the other leagues and force their will on them.

    And while I’m not the religious type, if you’re going to schedule games on Christian holidays you lose all legitimacy when using a Jewish holiday as an excuse. Play the game Wednesday. No one will care.

  19. nepo784 - Mar 19, 2013 at 11:17 AM

    Baseball is irrelevant

    • zzalapski - Mar 19, 2013 at 11:39 AM

    • sportsdrenched - Mar 19, 2013 at 11:43 AM

      Chill out there Turbo, you’ve said that 3 times already. This ain’t the movie Beetlejuice. Saying things three times will not transport you out of homeroom. And just an FYI, over 7 Billion dollars in revenue says you’re wrong. And that’s just MLB, that doesn’t count the dollars spent in Indy Ball, Summer Leagues, and College Baseball.

    • indaburg - Mar 19, 2013 at 12:14 PM

      Much like yourself.

  20. fhuizar - Mar 19, 2013 at 12:05 PM

    NFL > MLB

    Super Bowl > MLB

    Sorry people football is blowing baseball out of the water right now

    • sparty99 - Mar 19, 2013 at 6:54 PM

      And this has what to do with the issue?

  21. fellspointbird - Mar 19, 2013 at 12:58 PM

    I’ve always thought of NFL games as events, while baseball is more of a hobby. Events usually gather larger crowds, and can be quite the pain. Hobbies are things that are usually enjoyed with friends & promote conversation. Or something.

  22. scoocha - Mar 22, 2013 at 12:43 AM

    It’s probably not right but the NFL rules the USA sports market right now. There’s a good chance that the game will be meaningless for both the White Sox and Orioles come September. Plus, since the Baltimore area won’t be winning the World Series any time soon, maybe they should move the game to accommodate the fans and city who just won a Super Bowl.

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