Televised NFL games: Maybe the XFL wasn't entirely wrong...

Later today we'll have the next ballot for our NIners Nation all-time team.  In the meantime, I thought we'd mix things up a little bit and discuss something outside the direct realm of the 49ers.  I wanted to open the floor to discussion about how we view NFL games on tv, and more importantly, how we can improve that viewing experience.  The changes people suggest might never happen, but it's always interesting to at least ponder them.

This post was actually inspired by a brief discussion in last Sunday's post about re-watching recorded games.  I was asking for suggestions about what I should keep a close eye on this season when I re-watch 49ers games.  Someone suggested looking into how our downfield blockers look during the game.  Unfortunately the cameras we see on the networks miss out on a lot of important action by focusing on the ball carrier.  It certainly makes sense to follow the ball carrier, but you'd think they could get more creative in their coverage.

And so, that inspired me to post this idea: multiple cameras shooting different parts of the field and you could have a sort of picture in picture any time you wanted, rather than just when the networks decide to show it.  As I said in that post, I bet people would pay extra for that kind of option.  I know I would.  And I think this is a work-able option.  The networks already have multiple cameras because on instant replay they'll show other parts of the field during a play.  Why not provide some way for people to view what these cameras are shooting anytime during a game?

Beyond that, I think the title speaks for itself.  The XFL had multiple ideas that I thought could be instituted in the NFL in some form or fashion.  As I recall (and it's hard to find info on it), I believe the XFL set up microphones so viewers could hear the calling of plays from the offensive coordinator to the quarterback.  I'm sure NFL coaches would have a big problem with that, but I would think something along those lines would be pretty cool to hear.  Many fans might not care, but hard core fans would be intrigued.

My final suggestion is not exactly original, but something I've wanted to see for a long time.  Remote controls have the ASP button for people to switch the broadcast from English to Spanish.  I was thinking why not be able to switch between different broadcasting crews.  For example, switching from the tv crew to the Westwood One radio announcers, or even your own home announcers.  I realize I could turn on the radio while watching, but it'd be cool if it was all hooked up on the tv itself.

Anyways, I'm curious what other people think would improve the telecast of a football game.  No idea is too crazy (I don't think) so feel free to get creative.

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