NFL May Punt for A New Producer

The National Football League Monday blocked an offer from to continue producing

The issue was first reported in the online edition of the Wall Street Journal, but the paper was unable to gather the reason for the professional football league’s rejection.

The NFL said the deal on the table was pegged at $250 million over five years, including $50 million in cash up front. The bid also included an estimated $150 million in promotional value during the five year period.’s current three-year-old agreement with the NFL expires on April 23, the day after the NFL draft, at which point other leading sports Web sites, such as, may bid on the rights to publish the site. spokesperson Larry Wahl would not offer any other comment except to say that SportsLine would indeed be interested in hosting if given the opportunity. is part of the Walt Disney Co. Internet Group, which is controlled by Walt Disney Co. An spokesperson from the parent firm’s New York office would not comment on the spurned deal Monday.

If the NFL does indeed plan to draw up another play in terms of who would be running its Web site, the deal would be as lucrative a score for the new team as it would be a blow for the Walt Disney Internet Group, which has laid off more than 500 employees over the last month.

The pressured Web portal was finally sacked on Jan. 29, releasing about 400 employees. Analysts said some hub Web sites have a rough go of it and suffer from ill-conception, especially when trying to tackle larger opponents, such as Yahoo! and America Online Inc.

At the time of’s demise, Disney said it intended to instead focus on individual sites, such as and, but if a top-dollar contract from a premier professional sports league can not be secured, it would have to be seen as a cause for concern on Disney’s part. wasn’t the only Disney Internet property to take a beating; the Walt Disney Internet Group cut 135 workers primarily from and in the North Hollywood, Seattle and New York offices.

News Around the Web