Friday Night Fumbles

NBC may find the audience for its high school-football drama Friday Night Lights a bit wanting in numbers. But it can’t complain about the viewers’ attention to detail.

Although FNL has won rave reviews from critics, the show has drawn some penalty flags from fans who are unimpressed with the scenes of staged gridiron action.

Each week brings a new round of Thursday-morning quarterbacking, as fans take to the Internet to dissect the faux-football footage from the previous night’s show.

Some fumbles are continuity issues, such as when a shot of the scoreboard shows the fictional Dillon Panthers up by 10 points while the team is leading by only four and preparing to run a play that—surprise!—results in a touchdown.

But some fans have been moved to question the wisdom of Panthers coach Eric Taylor (Kyle Chandler), who recently had the team run a trick play while leading late in the game—a no-no in the football world.

"I don’t understand why Coach even called this play," one viewer griped at, which has a forum devoted to FNL’s accuracy on and off the field.

As NBC deliberates on giving the show a second season, it ought to consider the important service it provides to football fans who need coaches and players to criticize during the off-season.