A Punctured Lung: Top Stories, Sports and Business News — Sept. 23

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These are the stories shaping sports and business for Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2020.

NFL QB Tyrod Taylor's Bizarre Injury Situation

On Monday’s segment, we ran through what was a rough Sunday in the NFL from an injury perspective.

Two days later, we have reports of the most bizarre injury from that day. Tyrod Taylor, the starting quarterback of the Los Angeles Chargers, had an injury Sunday that was first reported as a chest issue. It has since been updated, via an ESPN report, that Taylor’s lung was actually punctured by the Chargers' team doctor as he tried to administer a pain killer for Taylor’s existing injury at the time -- cracked ribs. 

The NFL Players Association has been in contact with the team as well as Taylor since Sunday. An investigation is already underway.

Doctors, per ESPN, have informed the team that Taylor is expected to be out “indefinitely.”

Rookie quarterback Justin Herbert filled in for Taylor on Sunday and is expected to do the same going forward. L.A. hosts the Carolina Panthers on Sunday.

Daily Coronavirus Update

According to Johns Hopkins, there are over 31.7 million cases of the virus worldwide, with over 973,000 deaths. The U.S. has surpassed 6.9 million cases with 201,000 deaths. Per the COVID-19 Tracking Project, there were 49,439 new cases reported Tuesday, which is higher than the 39,472 cases reported the day earlier. 769,854 new tests were reported. And 854 deaths were reported yesterday, which is higher than the 287 deaths reported the day prior.

Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said that the U.S. trial of AstraZeneca remains on hold. Johnson & Johnson said the single-shot dose, which will be tested on 60,000 trial participants, followed positive data from a phase 2 trial, which demonstrated that the "safety profile and immunogenicity after a single vaccination were supportive of further development."

The company also reiterated its aim of producing and supplying more than one billion doses of the vaccine -- should it be approved by regulators -- through the course of 2021, and aims to have a decision on the vaccine's effectiveness either later this year or in the first months of the next.

CEO Alex Gorsky said, "As COVID-19 continues to impact the daily lives of people around the world, our goal remains the same - leveraging the global reach and scientific innovation of our company to help bring an end to this pandemic...As the world's largest healthcare company, we are bringing to bear our best scientific minds, and rigorous standards of safety, in collaboration with regulators, to accelerate the fight against this pandemic."

The World Health Organization says that around 150 potential vaccines are currently under some form of study, with 34 active human trials taking place from Russian to Bahrain.

NFL’s Broadcast Ratings

After a shaky start to the season, NFL broadcast ratings had several bright spots in Week 2 of what has turned out to be an unprecedented season.

ESPN’s Monday Night Football broadcast of the Las Vegas Raiders win against the New Orleans Saints in their brand new stadium garnered 15.4 million viewers, a 26% increase from the week 2 broadcast a year ago.

This year’s broadcast got an extra boost by being broadcast on ABC and ESPN 2 in conjunction with the normal ESPN broadcast.

The number was also a big improvement from the 10.8 million viewers who watched the first game of Monday Night Football’s Week 1 double header, which saw a 21% drop year over year.

Over on NBC, the NFL’s flagship Sunday Night Football broadcast drew 17.69 million viewers while going up against the 2020 Emmy Awards on the same night, proving that despite being caught in the middle of a political war between conservative and liberal activists, the league is still one of the most popular forms of entertainment around.

Bloomberg has reported that Fox is willing to pony up $2 billion a season for the rights to broadcast NFL games once the current contract runs out in 2022. Fox currently only pays $1.08 billion annually for the rights.Live television is an ad revenue generator unlike anything else in broadcast media and the NFL has until 2022 to show interested parties just how valuable the league is to their respective bottom lines. After a shaky start to the season, NFL broadcast ratings had several bright spots in Week 2 of what has turned out to be an unprecedented season.

ESPN’s Monday Night Football broadcast of the Las Vegas Raiders win against the New Orleans Saints in their brand new stadium garnered 15.4 million viewers, a 26% increase from the week 2 broadcast a year ago. This year’s broadcast got an extra boost by being broadcast on ABC and ESPN 2 in conjunction with the normal ESPN broadcast. The number was also a big improvement from the 10.8 million viewers who watched the first game of Monday Night Football’s Week 1 double header, which saw a 21% drop year over year.

Over on NBC, the NFL’s flagship Sunday Night Football broadcast drew 17.69 million viewers while going up against the 2020 Emmy Awards on the same night, proving that despite being caught in the middle of a political war between conservative and liberal activists, the league is still one of the most popular forms of entertainment around. Bloomberg has reported that Fox is willing to pony up $2 billion a season for the rights to broadcast NFL games once the current contract runs out in 2022.

Fox currently only pays $1.08 billion annually for the rights. Live television is an ad revenue generator unlike anything else in broadcast media and the NFL has until 2022 to show interested parties just how valuable the league is to their respective bottom lines. 

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