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October 20, 2014

ESPN takes on NBC Sunday Night Football

by Allison Waldman, posted Sep 3rd 2008 12:24PM
NFL badgeFor nearly 20 years, NFL football fans could feast on Sunday games and then flip on ESPN for a complete wrap up on NFL Prime Time hosted primarily by Chris "Boomer" Berman and Tom Jackson. It was a staple. Then in 2005, ESPN dropped the show.

Now, it's coming back (sort of) and in addition to Boomer and Jackson, John Saunders will be rejoining them, re-creating the original troika from 1987. The essence of NFL Prime Time will be found in the 7 p.m. ET edition of SportsCenter each Sunday during football season. Essentially, they'll be doing what they did on NFL Prime Time, and in doing so, they'll be taking aim at NBC's Football Night in America, that network's lead in show for the Sunday Night Football game.

This should be really interesting because the NBC pre-game show is like Thanksgiving dinner -- loaded with stuffing. They have stars galore, including the recently added, former ESPN stalwart, Dan Patrick.

Keith Olbermann, who is matched up with Patrick on the pre-game, which is a re-teaming from their ESPN SportsCenter days, has joked about how stuffed the program is, wondering who's the next name to be added to the roster. Currently, the line up includes Jerome Bettis, Tiki Barber, Peter King, Bob Costas, Cris Collinsworth, Olbermann and Patrick.

ESPN is taking on the NBC all-star power with three stars of their own, as well as a promise of all-sports coverage within the SportsCenter format. ESPN is betting that their familiar format will be the go-to place for football fans, especially fantasy football freaks who are searching for stats and data. Like ESPN's NFL draft coverage, the network intends to present a compressed format. That's code for lots of information all over the screen while the guys are talking meat-and-potatoes about the games. Oh, and they are saying that they'll be previewing the Sunday night primetime game, too.

The choice, then, will be clear and it will likely come down to preference. The NBC production is splashy and loud and aggressive. ESPN, while hardly subdued, is going to be sticking with their brand of jock-u-journalism.

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G7

Olbermann must go!!! and after he gets the red tag on his locker, send tiki into coaches office for the axe, the hype of him becoming an analyst lasted longer than his carreer should! Tell collinsworth to stick to one show! costas is a twerp and is spreading his small talent waaay to thin. Tell the bus the phones ringing and chuncky wants him back for some commercials, and you have to let him go. This has been brought to you by G7 speaking on behalf of the people!!!! fire them and we will watch

September 14 2008 at 8:30 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
mpearcex

Anything is better than watching that liberial pig Keith Olbermann

September 08 2008 at 5:54 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Bret

This is really interesting. I thought the show was moved/dropped because NBC bought the exclusive rights to show highlights before 11pm when they bought the Sunday Night package. I hope it's fairly close to the original show. I miss it.

-Bret

P.S. That's the old NFL logo above.

September 03 2008 at 9:04 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
sdm

This is good news. I didn't like the NBC show & stopped watching altogether when they brought Olberman in. Primetime was awesome back in the day & I'm glad to have some version of it back.

Fire Millen!!!

sdm

September 03 2008 at 3:56 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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