For The Win has received confirmation from NFL Network spokesman Alex Riethmiller that tonight’s opener of Thursday Night Football, which was originally scheduled to include a performance of “Run This Town” by Rihanna and a comedic skit, has been canceled.
CBS noted that the changes are a result of the current Ray Rice scandal; especially as sources have revealed that the video of Rice was sent to the NFL and that Rice told NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell about the incident back in June, contradicting Goodell’s previous claims.
CBS Sports chairman Sean McManus gave the following statement to Sports Illustrated:
It’s important to realize we are not over-reacting to this story, but it is as big a story as has faced the NFL. We thought journalistically and from a tone standpoint, we needed to have the appropriate tone and coverage. A lot of the production elements we wanted in the show are being eliminated because of time or tone.
If you are currently tuning into the pregame coverage, it will now include a report from CBS This Morning anchor Norah O’Donnell.
Rihanna’s opener performance is now scheduled to make its debut next week.