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Archive for Wednesday, June 13, 2001

NFL Briefs

June 13, 2001

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Playoff games moved to prime time this fall

New York NFL playoff games are going prime time.

Trying to reach a wider TV audience, the NFL said Tuesday that it was scheduling playoff games in prime time for the first time, pushing back kickoffs for some wild-card and divisional contests.

The four Saturday playoff games next season will start at 3:30 or 7 p.m. CST. In past seasons, those games started at either 11:30 a.m. or 3 p.m. CST.

Six of the eight wild-card and divisional playoff games last season drew lower TV ratings than the year before.

"This will give our fans two playoff games starting early in prime time and it will mean much larger potential audiences for these games," NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue said in a statement released Tuesday. "The number of households using television increases dramatically as the day proceeds."

Regular-season Saturday games also will kick off later than in the past.

Bills' Irvin out with sore hamstring

Orchard Park, N.Y. Buffalo Bills starting cornerback Ken Irvin will miss the final two days of minicamp after pulling his left hamstring Tuesday.

Irvin said the Bills training staff told him that he would be fully recovered within two weeks and ready for training camp, which opens July 29.

Also, the Bills signed Bill Conaty, projected to be Buffalo's starting center.

Hilliard to have surgery

East Rutherford, N.J. New York Giants wide receiver Ike Hilliard will have surgery on his big right toe next Monday.

Broncos' Ruhman injured

Denver The Denver Broncos lost another offensive tackle as free agent Chris Ruhman went down with a knee injury Tuesday during the team's minicamp.

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