A Taste of ESPN’s Super Bowl Plans, Al Michaels and Tony Dungy Go Back: The Media’s Thoughts on the NFL Game

Sports media loves promotional press releases with the same fervor that Rick Blaine loved Elsa Lund – and no sports property produces more promotional copies annually than NFL. As a preview of the company’s coverage of the Monday night game between Cowboys And hackerESPN sent out a statement of more than 1,100 words highlighting the company taking down Tampa in the NFC wild-card game. Coverage of the game ran on five platforms (ESPN, ABC, ESPN2, ESPN+, and ESPN Deportes), including Entertaining alternative broadcasting Featuring Peyton and Eli Manning. Then there was a fleet of studio shows on location straight from Tampa Bay. The Release even made news that an exclusive new trailer debuted at the halftime for Season 3 of “The Mandalorian.”. ” We are looking forward to “Get Up with Grogu” in the distant future.

as part of Long term rights agreement With the NFL, ABC/ESPN will carry Super Bowls in the 2026 and 2030 seasons. This will be the first time the ESPN-NFL agreement includes Super Bowl rights. (ABC last broadcast the Super Bowl in February 2006). The company is also adding a split carousel game to its schedule along with the current wild card game starting in 2023.

So if you’re looking for a mini preview of how ESPN will cover the Super Bowl, Monday was a good place to start. At one point, I logged on to ESPN.com and was rewarded with a huge box counting “AIKMAN and STEPHEN A.” By the time 2026 rolls around, I think you’ll see several alternate Super Bowl broadcasts on ESPN networks (assuming that doesn’t happen from before) and what essentially amounts to a seven-day Super Bowl pre-show.

Sadly, Monday wasn’t a Monet game unless you were a hardcore cowboy. Dallas rolled, 31-14, and the biggest drama centered around whether the Cowboys kicker Brett Maher You will finally make an extra point After losing four straight times before the fourth quarter. But ESPN executives will plainly say that the year was a success because the broadcast team of Joe Buck and Troy Aikman delivered what ESPN management wanted so badly — making “Monday Night Football” look bigger and dousing the criticism its most prized property received (often through self-inflicted wounds). ).

This does not mean more viewers. ESPN and ESPN2’s “Monday Night Football” averaged 13.419 million viewers in 2022, down five percent from last year (14.130 million), according to Austin Karp of Sports Business Journal. As I hope you realize by now, viewership is dictated by the matches and the quality of the games.

The MNF regular season viewership numbers above do not include the abbreviated broadcast on January 2, which I thought was the show’s best action of the season. The unprecedented scene of buffalo safety Hamlin devastation Collapse on the field in a match against Bengals Buck, Aikman, and reporter Lisa Salters are pushed into an unprecedented situation. They were all careful to never speculate on the details of Hamlin’s diagnosis and the trio were quick to understand the seriousness of the situation. 1 successful year for this group.

The part of sports media writing that I’ve found to be particularly unimportant over the past few years is evaluating the on-air performance of sportscasters. I’ve spent years talking to producers, directors, and on-air talent, spending time on broadcast trucks, and have an appreciation for the challenges of the job. Live TV is not easy, even bad live TV.

But the essence of all this is subjectivity. My opinion of performance has no more weight than yours.

This is a prequel to give some quick thoughts on last Saturday’s NBC broadcast about the Jaguars’ impressive comeback chargers. The broadcast stood out because Michaels and Tony Dungy were incredibly flat. It was a crazy and hectic final quarter, but we just didn’t feel it as viewers. Call the match winning kick bafflingly underestimated. Someone like Joss Johnson, a play-by-play announcer who can create his own momentum independently of his partner, would have been incredibly valuable on Saturday. I put the majority of the mood on Dungy, who is too low key to be a game analyst in my view. This was also a very clear case of two people not working together this season.

Those who want to exclude Michaels will not find an ally here. Having watched most of Amazon’s schedule, I don’t think Michaels has lost his enthusiasm or fast airing. There were some games. As discussed in this column Last week, that was simply awful. Not much could be done to save them. But if Michaels calls a playoff game for NBC next year, he’ll benefit from an analyst who brings a lot of energy and especially one he’s worked with before.

In contrast to NBC’s game-winning call With Ian Eagle and Jason McCourty, who had an invitation to Westwood One Audio. And This call Sunday night is from NBC’s Mike Tirico It was the ultimate athletic hair.

Some viewership numbers for NFL studio shows this season:

NBC’s “Football Night in America”: 7.24 million viewers, up 1% from last season.
Fox NFL Sunday: 4.542 million viewers, up 2% from 2021.
“The NFL Today” on CBS: 3.345 million viewers, up eight percent from 2021.
ESPN’s “NFL Sunday Countdown”: 1.240 million viewers, up seven percent from 2021.
“Fox NFL Kickoff”: 1.304 million viewers, up nine percent from 2021.

Note: All sports TV channel numbers have gone up over the past two years thanks to out-of-home viewership.

On Saturday night in Jacksonville, Fred Godelli, executive producer of the NFL for NBC Sports and executive producer of “Friday Night Football” for Amazon, wrapped up one of the NFL’s most prolific runs. The Jaguars’ win over the Chargers was his final game as a major NFL producer. I asked him to forward his professional numbers:

• 670 NFL games produced, including seven Super Bowls, 35 postseason games, 532 regular season games, 85 preseason games, and 11 Pro Bowls.
First game as a major NFL product: August 5, 1990, for a preseason game in Tokyo between Denver And Seattle.
• First regular season game as an NFL major leaguer: November 11, 1990, 24-6 San Francisco win over Dallas.
His most memorable game: the Super Bowl XLIII (Pittsburgh against. Arizona, Feb. 1, 2009): “Two key plays in Super Bowl history and our team covered them neatly—James Harrison’s 100-yard interception for a touchdown to end the half and Ben Roethlisberger’s pass to Santonio Holmes with less than a minute left in the corner of the endzone to win it,” Gaudelli said. Larry Fitzgerald had a crazy second half. It was John Madden’s last broadcast, although no one on our team has any evidence of it.”

Gaudelli is not retiring. He will oversee the production of “Sunday Night Football” and work on the SNF schedule with the league. He will also be on location for a number of Thursday night Amazon games and will supervise TNF productions.

Fox NFL analyst Greg Olsen’s stellar work continued this season as the Giants beat the NFL Vikings.

Amazon Night Football on Prime Video averaged 9.58 million viewers per game in its first season, via Nielsen. The company said those numbers jump to 11.3 million viewers when Nielsen data is combined with Amazon’s internal first-party metrics. These first party metrics are not published. the athleteBill Shea Did a deep dive into Amazon viewership for the first year.

Next week’s Bengals-Bills game in Buffalo will be the third consecutive week that Jim Nantz, Tony Romo and Tracy Wolfson have been earmarked for a game in Buffalo.

An intriguing behind-the-scenes look at the backspeaking used by Fox rules analyst Mike Pereira in the NFL. By the way, “Rouge” here is Roger Roth, Pereira’s producer, not Roger Goodell. Costume is produced by Richie Ziontz.

Important sports pieces:

• Fantastic piece. The softer side of Mafia Bills. By Steve Rochin of Sports Illustrated.

• Shaq and Kobe, $10,000 Bets and Digger Phelps Bake: An Oral History of New York’s Hidden Coaching Gem. By Joe Vardon the athlete.

• Football Flag: This year’s Pro Bowl; Even after that, the the Olympics? By Les Carpenter of The Washington Post.

• Within the NFL, a player swears by playing surfaces. Written by Jordan Rodrigue and Daniel Popper the athlete.

• I saw horrible things when I played in the NFL. By Nate Jackson for The Atlantic.

•. Will any team sign Trevor Bauer despite the controversy he may bring? By Peter Abraham of The Boston Globe.

• Iranian chess rulers are in dispute with the governing body over women’s solidarity. By Gabriel Tetro-Farber for Reuters.

• The FIFA trial has implicated Fuchs, a major football player. By Ken Bensinger of The New York Times.

• “SNL of Sabermetrics”: How a group of message board misfits changed the game of baseball. Written by Rustin Dodd and Jason Jenks the athlete.

Cut off the non-sports notes:

• Long-term COVID: key findings, mechanisms, and recommendations. Nature Reviews Microbiology. Written by Hannah E. Davis, Lisa McCorkle, Julia Moore Fogel, and Eric J. Topol.

• Watchmen for Views: YouTube scammers harass suspected scam callers in India. Written by Andrew Dick and Raksha Kumar from the rest of the world.

Global News (Canada) He spent months investigating coronavirus misinformation three years into the pandemic.

• Dave Bautista method. By Yang Yi Guo of GQ.

• Inquiry about documents highlights Biden’s tumultuous final days as vice president. Written by Peter Baker and Michael D. Cher from The New York Times.

• Inside Mastbaum High, a Philly children’s shelter at the epicenter of the opioid epidemic. By Christine A. Graham for the Philadelphia Inquirer.

• Stuck with Santos. By Kimberly Weil from The Bulwark.

• The school did not have a comprehensive playground. Students stepped in to raise $300,000 to build one. By Steve Hartman from CBS News.

• Two weeks old but a fascinating piece: the mysterious case of a doctor who disappeared at sea. By Michael Wilson of The New York Times.

• Want to read about a real hero? Read this on Adolfo Kaminsky.

(cowboy picture) Duck Prescott and hackers Tom Brady: Julio Aguilar/Getty Images)

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