After a swashbuckling game of Raiders vs. Buccaneers, few would've guessed that the unlikely victim of the pirated pillage was actually the network airing the Super Bowl.

Sure, Disney's(NYSE: DIS) ABC rode high, with football earning its rightful place as America's favorite pastime. This morning, investors might be giddy over sponsors paying north of $2 million for a simple 30-second commercial during the broadcast. Big game. Big money.

Big problem.

Football fans are already experiencing that empty feeling. It's Monday. If you're ready for some football tonight, you're in for a long wait. And no one will miss the scent of the pigskin and the grass burns of the gridiron quite like ABC. Its Monday Night Football presentations were often the only ABC shows to break into the top ratings. With that void, only The Bachelorette has proven to have the mettle to break into the Nielsen Media Research Top 20 with any kind of consistency, and the show has just a few more weeks to go.

So, while ABC has been running third in the ratings war behind Viacom's(NYSE: VIA) CBS and General Electric's(NYSE: GE) NBC, there are worse positions than third in the network arena. While Fox(NYSE: FOX) got a late jump on its new fall season, Joe Millionaire has generated Bachelorette-like numbers, and American Idol is back to heat things up. The strong will no doubt get stronger, as NBC dips into new episodes of its popular sitcoms, while CBS has fared well with the return of Star Search and Survivor, which starts next month.

Where does that leave ABC? Will it struggle with mid-season replacements and a relatively inexperienced lineup and place fourth in the ratings race? Football is a game of takeaways, and ABC has taken that to heart. Its new shows will mirror those of the more successful broadcasters. Comedian Jimmy Kimmel will host a live late-night show to give the struggling network some comic relief against Jay Leno and David Letterman. I'm a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here had to fight off lawsuits from the creators of Survivor.Are You Hot? takes the American Idol spirit of competition and gives it a skin slant that makes Temptation Island wholesome by comparison.

So, Disney is hoping to forge ahead through acts of plunder. But last night's scoreboard said it all -- the Raiders lost.