By Rose Luna

Killeen Daily Herald

It is every football fan's dream. A television network solely devoted to the most popular sport in America – professional football.

NFL Network is a melting pot of gridiron greats from the NFL's past, present and future that will satisfy the insatiable appetites of millions of football fans across the country.

Beginning with the Broncos and Chiefs on Thursday night, the channel will broadcast eight prime-time regular season NFL games, dubbed "the run to the playoffs." The Cowboys and the Falcons will kick off the Saturday lineup that will include three regular season games.

"It gives us football fans more options than having to sit down and watch a game just on Sunday and Monday," said Sara Lodge, a hostess at Boston's Gourmet Pizza and Pasta. "You don't have to worry about missing anything or planning your week's schedule around one day. You have four to choose from."

For a seven-days-a-week, 24-hours-a-day, 365-days-a-year experience of pure adrenaline-pumping testosterone, look no further than Killeen sports bars such as Boston's, Jesters and Buffalo Wild Wings Grill and Bar.

"Around here, we take our football seriously," Lodge said. "There's nothing like hearing people get excited when their team scored a touchdown. It's good energy."

NFL Network is the gathering place, using television to bring a new dimension to the NFL experience. The passion, the excitement, the highs and the lows are covered by NFL Network from an "insider's" perspective.

"I'm a regular viewer of the NFL network," said Jeffery Washek, of Copperas Cove. "In fact, that's mainly all I watch. In my opinion, (the NFL Network) is just a way for the NFL to put out more information on football to all the fans out there, instead of limiting yourself to just one channel."

Each NFL Network telecast will feature a live pregame show from the host city, providing a unique feel for the atmosphere surrounding the event. In addition, a postgame show will wrap-up the action with interviews, highlights and press conferences.

And what would football be without pom-poms and high-kicks?

The NFL Cheerleader Playoffs consists of two cheerleaders from each of the NFL's 25 cheerleading squads competing to be crowned "Champions of the Sidelines". Each show will feature four events; two physical challenges, an NFL knowledge game and finally a dance competition. The shows air at 2 p.m. Saturday afternoons.

DirecTV, the nation's largest satellite service provider, offers the network to all 15.4 million of its customers on Channel 212. Dish Network, the nation's second largest satellite and third-largest provider, offers NFL Network to all 12.2 million of its customers on Channel 154.

Two of the three largest cable operators, Comcast and Cox carry NFL Network. In all, more than 150 operators have signed distribution agreements with NFL Network. Both AT&T and Verizon now offer video service and make NFL Network available as part of their expanded basic package.

Contact Rose Luna at

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