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Johnson’s Letter to NFL on Schedule Conflict

Posted by Randy Lange on April 16, 2009 – 4:17 pm

The Jets have formalized their request to the NFL regarding the team’s schedule, announced Tuesday night, to move the kickoff of the Jets’ Sept. 27 home game against Tennessee from 4:15 p.m. to 1 p.m. to avoid conflict with the Jewish observance of Yom Kippur.

The club has been in behind-the-scenes communications with the league office for the past two days. Today, Woody Johnson, the Jets chairman and CEO, sent a letter to NFL commissioner Roger Goodell.

"I understand the challenges and complexities associated with creating the NFL schedule each year," Johnson said in his letter. "However, I am extremely disappointed with the League’s decision to schedule us to play at home on consecutive Sundays that are in direct conflict with the Jewish High Holy Days. There has long been an understanding that neither the Jets nor the Giants fans should have to bear completely the brunt of this issue since we are in the largest Jewish market in the country."

The Jets owner explained that the club feels the best solution is to change the time of the Titans game. "This would give our Jewish fans the opportunity to arrive at home before sundown for Yom Kippur," he said.

"Those who suffer most are our fans," Johnson concluded. "The NFL has been the leading proponent of improving the fans’ gameday experience. I feel making this change will further that goal."

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Posted in Randy Lange | 30 Comments »

30 Responses to “Johnson’s Letter to NFL on Schedule Conflict”

  1. By CraigDMD on Apr 16, 2009 | Reply

    Should also reschedule the New England opener for Sunday night at 8:15pm after yuntov (the holiday) is over.

  2. By scjoe on Apr 16, 2009 | Reply

    It is the right thing to do, move the game up to a 1:00pm start where it should have been to begin with. There is so much time between now and then that it shouldn’t be a major problem with the league.

  3. By veggie on Apr 16, 2009 | Reply

    huh??? are u for real???????????? woody theres more things to worry about like giving leon washington some cash, dudes crazy…………

  4. By s silfen on Apr 16, 2009 | Reply

    should have come down to this if your office staff did thier homeowork.
    The giant’s office staff did it right and as usual the Jets screw it up

  5. By Richard H on Apr 16, 2009 | Reply

    Thank you Mr. Johnson!!
    I would also recommend New York Jets fans to also write individual letters to the NFL office so they understand the magnitude and impact of these two consecutive kick off times on the significant Jewish community that supports the New York Jets.
    The NFL address is:
    Mr. Roger Goodell
    National Football League
    280 Park Avenue
    New York, NY 10017

  6. By Row on Apr 16, 2009 | Reply

    I think it’s best the league shows impartiality. It’s a crock how they (NFL) could pretend they didn’t know about the holiday. If our times are adjusted, NYG’s should be also.

  7. By Ira on Apr 16, 2009 | Reply

    Woody did the right thing. Hopefully, these types of things can be avoided in the future. The last time the Jets played at home on the afternnon leading up to the start of Yom Kippur was back in 96 vs the Giants and it was a 1pm start. Also back in 99 the Jets played a Sunday Night Game @ Buffalo at the same time of the start of Yom Kippur. Thank You Woody. And shame on the NFL.

  8. By jkjets12 on Apr 16, 2009 | Reply

    Couldn’t they make the game on a different day altogether? Or 2nd prize would be switching the games, I’d much rather watch us play NE than Tennessee.

  9. By jets chai on Apr 16, 2009 | Reply

    how did this happen in the first place?

  10. By Phil Levy on Apr 17, 2009 | Reply

    Thank you Woody. It a shame that the NFL didin’t have the sense to realize that this would impact the Jewish Jets fans.Hopefully this can be rectified quickly.

  11. By harry-o on Apr 17, 2009 | Reply

    last time I checked, any religious holy day extends past NYC
    it would be nice to accomodate all NFL fans effected
    but not nessesary, its a religious obligation not a NFL obligation

  12. By russ on Apr 17, 2009 | Reply

    Change the game to 1 and everybody is happy including me because 4 oclcok games suck!!! And TV doesnt call the tune without football they would have infomercials…


  13. By Frank on Apr 17, 2009 | Reply

    Agree 100 % skibba. Religion has no place in sports and it appears the whiners are out in full force. If god forbids us from watching football then i will be the first to become an atheist. Lighten up people and enjoy life. We’ll all have enough time to suffer later.

  14. By Jim 40 yr. season ticket holder on Apr 17, 2009 | Reply

    I am a 40 year season ticket holder and of the Jewish faith.
    If any ticket holders cannot make it to the game those are the breaks.
    Now having said that the J-E-T-S are a total screw up. It just boggles the mind how dysfunctional this franchise is

  15. By Stuart Bass on Apr 17, 2009 | Reply

    I wonder how NY fans would react if the Jets played on Christmas Day?

  16. By Mike on Apr 17, 2009 | Reply

    Why would anyone have the gall to expect the rest of the world to accommodate their particular religion? If you have a superstition that you have to be home before a certain time, then don’t plan to do things that would prevent that. Are we just going to accommodate Christianity and Judaism, or do all religions get a turn? What about Islam, or Scientology, or Wicca or Paganism?

  17. By AL on Apr 17, 2009 | Reply


  18. By Ken Y. on Apr 17, 2009 | Reply

    I don’t see what the big deal is nobody complains when sports is played on Chirstmas day or on Easter Sunday.

  19. By Heather Czerniak on Apr 17, 2009 | Reply

    ATTENTION ALL IDIOT SPORTS FANS: Read the story! The request to change the game schedule was NOT made by Jews. It was made by Jets owner Woody Johnson, who is NOT Jewish. No one in the Jewish community urged him to make the request. He made it on his own.

    This story is all over the Internet. Jews are being bashed left and right and they have nothing to do with it. Lay off the anti-Semitism!

  20. By Josh McFickelstien on Apr 17, 2009 | Reply

    Hey Heather, Its not anti semitism just because the Jewish Jet fans want to have it their way, and the NFL wont accomodate them and their religion! What about all the OTHER religions?? This aint burger king, you cant have it your way. IF YOU CANT MAKE IT TO THE GAME SELL THE TICKETS AND LET THE CHRISTIANS, MUSLIMS, AGNOSTICS, AND MORMONS HAVE THE LUXURY BOXES!! GO JETS

  21. By irish jets fan on Apr 17, 2009 | Reply

    This is in response to heathers comment,whats up with calling people idiot sports fans?who cares who made the reqest woody or seinfeld the point is this is football american football .and calling people anti semetic?thats the most absurd comment ever.look up what anti semetic is and it has nothing to do with what your whining about.HEATHER HOW ARROGANT TO CALL PEOPLE IDIOTS

  22. By Rocco from NY on Apr 17, 2009 | Reply

    Is it that really big of a deal ? Come on now. The NY Jets have bigger problems. For Ex. who is going 2 be our next QB?

  23. By bernice kuntzman on Apr 17, 2009 | Reply

    Thanks for your help Mr Johnson. Some of these other comments are from people who know nothing about the Jewish religion and how important it is to change the time to 1:00PM

  24. By Longtime Jet Fan on Apr 17, 2009 | Reply

    If any person (Woody, in our case) or people feel that completely avoidable decisions get made that adversely affect a person or a group of people (here, Jewish fans), they have a right to be upset and can request a change. There are a lot of Jewish NFL fans in the NY area,many of whom are season ticket holders, whose religious observances prevent them from being able to attend or watch that game.

  25. By Scott Howard on Apr 17, 2009 | Reply

    In NY this is a big deal. The NFL had the request in advance and ignored it.
    All they had to do is make the game at 1PM. I believe they honored a similar request from the Giants for another holiday. The jets are always treated like the “stepchild.”

  26. By veggie on Apr 17, 2009 | Reply

    this is the craziest thing that really needs more publicity,how can a religous group who cares what group have the power to alter the nfl schedule.well i guess christmas games shouldnt be played anymore. football and religion dont mix , and why cant people of jewish faith just celebrate their holy day and not go to the game,isnt that what your god wants

  27. By Anonymous on Apr 17, 2009 | Reply

    To address Heather’s comment that “idiot sports fans” are antisemitic and that Jews are getting bashed is nonsense. It’s playing the victim for dramatic effect. The point that people are making is that nobody’s religion should have anything to do with something like a football schedule. People like to bring up “freedom of religion.” What about freedom FROM religion?

  28. By serge on Apr 18, 2009 | Reply

    come on guys pls stop all the bickering about the timechange.Personally I don’t care if the jets beats the titans @ 3:45 or @ 6:45 just as long as we wind up with the W. Beat the titans two years in a row that all that matters. Its not like the game is next week. So let the JEWS enjoy the game then celebrate their holy day. Go Jets Nation

  29. By chris on Apr 18, 2009 | Reply

    I guess we’ll see if God loves the J E T S Jets Jets Jets

  30. By Tadd Schwab on Apr 21, 2009 | Reply

    Thanks for changing the Yom Kippur Game to 1:00. There is still an issue with the 9/20 New England Game. Why not move that game to 7:00 to resolve the whole matter….

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