NFL fans crush NBC broadcast over new 'green zone'
Football fans craving action to close the weekend on Sunday night were treated to an NFL preseason game between the Arizona Cardinals and Dallas Cowboys.
What they didn’t expect was a wrinkle by NBC Sports when it introduced a new ‘green zone’ feature, which was designed to illustrate on third downs how far players need to go at any point during the play to get a first down. Like the shot tracer in golf, the glowing puck and comet trail in hockey, the green zone is one more in a list of graphics and special features that brought a crush of reaction in real time.
Creatures of habit, football fans — and sports fans in general — rarely appreciate noticeable broadcast changes from game to game. By the looks of tweets in response to this change, fans were comfortable with the yellow first-down marker, which has become common on football broadcasts.
There was the occasional fan who seemed to enjoy the new addition, but otherwise, it was universally criticized.
Given this kind of response, it’ll be interesting to see if NBC stays with the feature during the regular season.
NBC trying something new on tonight's broadcast. The "Green Zone." Shows you how much space is in front of the offense before they get a first down…which I thought the yellow line was for but what do I know! pic.twitter.com/4xNkCpuvKu
— Zach Bye (@byesline) August 27, 2018
I appreciate the effort, but please immediately remove the “Green Zone” from all future broadcasts
— Cameron Magruder (@ScooterMagruder) August 27, 2018
NBC just debuted the “green zone.” I don’t know, I thought the yellow line pretty much showed you all you had to know..??
— Dave Softy Mahler (@Softykjr) August 27, 2018
The green zone is for all the idiots who couldn’t understand the yellow line – What Al Michaels wanted to say
— Football Observer (@Chris_Lomas_) August 27, 2018
I like the Green Zone. Good idea. I’m sure Twitter will react w thoughtful nuance for its debut. #snf
— Colin Cowherd (@ColinCowherd) August 27, 2018
I’m all for introducing technology to enhance the viewer experience, but the Green Zone feels like too much? With that said, I can’t wait for the @DIRECTV Green Zone package this season.
— Michael Fortier (@Fortier223) August 27, 2018