TV Answer Man, I very disappointed that Fox did not do the Bucs-Rams game in 4K after doing the wild card game with the Eagles and Bucs in 4K. Was that just a logistical glitch or something? Please tell me that Fox will do the NFC championship game with the Rams and 49ers in 4K? Right? It’s the championship! — Larry, Riverside, California.
Larry, you’re right. Fox last Sunday did not provide a 4K feed of the thrilling Tampa Bay Buccaneers-Los Angeles Rams game after doing a 4K broadcast of the Tamps Bay Buccaneers-Philadelphia Eagles wild card game the week before.
Last week’s omission surprised many 4K enthusiasts. Fox has been arguably the leading supporter of live 4K sports, offering a 4K version of NFL Thursday Night Football games as well as numerous college football and basketball games and NASCAR races. (The 4K feeds have been available on the Fox Sports app and special 4K channels carried by pay TV providers such as DIRECTV, Comcast and YouTube TV, among others.)
So, will Fox get back on the 4K horse this Sunday with the 49ers-Rams NFC Championship game from Inglewood, California?
Sorry, it appears the answer is no. While Fox isn’t commenting officially yet (I’ve asked multiple PR representatives for a comment via e-mail, but have not received a response), three industry sources who have knowledge of the situation say the network does not plan to broadcast the Rams-49ers game in 4K.
I am not too surprised by this decision. Fox last season did one wild card game in 4K, but then didn’t do another playoff game in the format. For reasons unknown, the network apparently either doesn’t have the rights or inclination to offer more than one NFL playoff game in 4K.
Fox isn’t backing away from 4K. The network is doing two college basketball games this week in the format. But it’s not happening for the NFL. At least not this Sunday.
The 49ers-Packers game, which starts at 6:30 p.m. ET on Saturday, will still be available in HD on the Fox Sports app as well as Fox network affiliates. But not 4K. If there’s any indication that could change — although I’m pretty sure it won’t — you’ll hear about it here.
Larry, hope that makes sense. Happy viewing and stay safe!
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— Phillip Swann