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NFL awards Thursday contract to CBS

NEW YORK – The NFL says CBS will broadcast eight of its Thursday night games next season

CBS won bidding for the games, an increasingly valuable property for network television.

The games will be simulcast on the NFL Network and come during the first half of the season. The league’s cable network will keep six second-half Thursday games for itself.

The deal also includes two Saturday games, although it still hasn’t been determined who will broadcast them.

The NFL says the contract is for one year, and the league has an option to extend it for 2015.

The CBS lead broadcasting team of Jim Nantz and Phil Simms will be in the booth for all 16 games.