The dense fog that hovered inside Gillette Stadium during the New England Patriots’ Week 7 game against the Atlanta Falcons was a nuisance to many. Julio Jones complained about it, and the Patriots’ video team was forced to get creative.
But for NBC, it might’ve been a blessing in disguise.
The fog rendered the network’s traditional field camera angle useless for much of the second half, prompting it to utilize SkyCam as the primary angle. Well, NBC and its viewers apparently loved what they saw, as SkyCam will be used as the main camera angle when the Pittsburgh Steelers host the Tennessee Titans in Week 11 for “Thursday Night Football,” the network announced Thursday.
“We are excited to present a game with the majority of live-action coverage coming from SkyCam,” Fred Gaudelli, executive producer of NBC “Sunday Night Football” and “Thursday Night Football,” said in a statement. “After pivoting out of necessity to SkyCam in the New England fog, we’ve been aggressively planning and testing with the intent of utilizing the system for a full game.”
The now-infamous fog game wasn’t the only factor in NBC’s decision, however. In fact, the network is looking to tap into the “Madden NFL” experience.
“Younger generations of NFL fans have grown accustomed to watching football from this angle through their love of video games,” Gaudelli said. “This telecast will have a look and feel akin to that experience. We’ll still have our full complement of cameras and will revert to traditional coverage when situations dictate, but the primary viewing experience of the game will come from the SkyCam angle.”
While it remains to be seen how effective SkyCam will be when used throughout an entire game, it’s tough to argue the angle doesn’t present an exciting break from the norm.
NBC did not specify whether the Nov. 16 broadcast will be a one-off, or if the network plans to do something similar for future broadcasts.
Thumbnail photo via Stew Milne/USA TODAY Sports Images