NFL suspends its TV blackout rule for 2015 season

PHOENIX -- The NFL lifted the television blackout rule in place for the 2015 season, the league announced Monday at the NFL owners' meetings in Arizona.

The FCC previously ceased backing the blackout rule, although the league was still able to enforce it legally. The blackout rule keeps the broadcasts of games off TV in local markets when the home team doesn't sell enough tickets.

The league has suspended the policy for one year. The NFL "will evaluate the impact of the suspension after the season."

In other words, if 2015 is like 2014 (no blackouts occurred because tickets sales were high enough) there shouldn't be a problem continuing with the elimination of the policy.

The Bills and Chargers, however, both lost a game to blackout in 2013. The Raiders, Buccaneers and Bengals all lost a game in 2012.

A high number of blackouts from various clubs could result in the NFL bringing the policy back.

Some very interesting steps from the NFL being taken on the television and digital front at the league meetings this year, with the blackout news coming on the heels of a fully-digital distribution of one game between the Jaguars and Bills in London next year.

And the NFL said: there shall be no blackouts in 2015.
And the NFL said: There shall be no blackouts in 2015. (Getty Images)
CBS Sports Senior Writer

Will Brinson joined CBS Sports in 2010 and enters his seventh season covering the NFL for CBS. He previously wrote for FanHouse along with myriad other Internet sites. A North Carolina native who lives... Full Bio

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