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Will NFL consider Friday night games?

Mike Florio and Chris Simms debate whether top prospects in the Big Ten and Pac-12 could opt out of spring football in order to prepare for the 2021 NFL Draft.

Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays will entail football this year. The only question at this point is what kind.

The NFL likely will move some Sunday games to Saturday, if college football doesn’t happen this year. With high school football limited if not gone altogether this year, Fridays may be in play, too.

Mark Maske of the Washington Post both confirms our prior reporting regarding Saturday football, and then expands it to include Friday games.

Whether Friday or Saturday, the NFL first would need a waiver of the primary conditions for the NFL’s longstanding broadcast antitrust exemption: That the NFL televise no games on Fridays or Saturdays from Labor Day through early December. Thus, in exchange for respecting the turf of high school and college football, the NFL received the ability to market games to networks as a group, not as the individual businesses that they are.

The league also would need to get the approval of the NFL Players Association. It’s one thing to move games to Saturdays. Moving games to Fridays would potentially give rise to the same health-and-safety issues that come from playing on Thursdays.

This year, however, the NFL braces to lose billions with no fans at most games and few at the rest. Any way to rebuild the budget should be welcomed by both sides. It that means Saturday games, embrace Saturday games. If that means Friday games, find a way to make it work.

First things first, college football must clear out of Saturdays, and there must be enough of a void when it comes to high school games to justify backfilling Fridays.