two things, they have a contract with the NFL to air plenty of games and the NFL is pretty much the only entity you can't boss around.
remember, the NFL is why the well received show Playmakers was canned. It wasnt bad ratings. It was the fear they could lose out of airing NFL games that got it axed.
The NFL is by far the most powerful sports league in the world and the Super Bowl is by far the highest rated single day sporting event.
they don't want to piss off the NFL and lose the rights to the games.
hell, I wouldn't be shocked to see the NFL playoffs end up on ESPN in the next 15 years. They are certainly going to try to get them.
but if ESPN didnt have NFL games and knew they'd never get them you can be sure their coverage would be drastically reduced.
This post was edited on 1/3 at 10:34 pm