Updated: June 17, 2003, 11:11 AM ETBy By Darrell Trimble
NFL: The NFL will soon launch its own television channel, the NFL Network. The channel, like the NFL Sunday Ticket package, will air on DirecTV, but is expected to be on most cable systems within a year or two. Steve Bornstein, the former president of ESPN, will run the network and is expected to announce the channel's launch date (probably late October or early November) and 2003-04 programming plans in the next few weeks. According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, the tentative plan calls for three hours of original programming per night. One hour a celebrity-laced talk show, another hour will be an X's-and-O's matchup show for hardcore fans, and a third hour will be filled with new or updated presentations from NFL Films. Denver Broncos: WR Adrian Madise, a fifth-round pick from Texas Christian University, has agreed to a five-year deal that could top out at $2.655 million should Madise reach minimum playing-time requirements at any time in the first three seasons of the contract, according to the Rocky Mountain News. Madise has been one of the pleasant surprises at the Broncos' recent minicamp, which could explain the unusual length of the deal. Only two fifth-round picks in the entire 2002 draft received a contract in excess of four seasons. Madise figures to be in the mix for the Broncos' No. 4 receiver job, initially behind Rod Smith, Ashley Lelie and Ed McCaffrey.