ESPN NFL Programming Update


ESPN NFL Programming Update

NFL MVP Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers Face the Seattle Seahawks on ESPN’s Monday Night Football

NFL MVP Aaron Rodgers and the defending NFC North Champion Green Bay Packers face rookie quarterback Russell Wilson and the Seattle Seahawks on ESPN’s Monday Night Football on September 24, at 8:30 p.m. ET. Announcer Mike Tirico and analyst Jon Gruden will call the game from CenturyLink Field with sideline reporter Lisa Salters.

In seven Packers-Seahawks matchups, the Seahawks have won just one game. Coincidentally, that win came on MNF six years ago – the last time these teams faced off under the MNF lights.

Leading into the MNF matchup, host Chris Berman and the Monday Night Countdown crew offer a two-hour pre-game show beginning at 6:30 p.m. Analysts Cris CarterMike DitkaTom Jackson and Keyshawn Johnson and NFL Insiders Chris Mortensen and Adam Schefter join Berman in studio, while on-site host Stuart Scott, analysts Trent Dilfer and Steve Young, contributor Rick Reilly and Salters add to the show. This will be a homecoming for Dilfer, who played for the Seahawks from 2001-04.

MNF is available on ESPN and ESPN Deportes, as well as on computers at and on tablets via the WatchESPN app for fans who receive their video subscription from an affiliated provider.

Sunday NFL Countdown: Demaryius Thomas – From Shattered Home to Star Wide Receiver; “Getting Gronk’d” with Rob Gronkowski; Vernon Davis’ Turnaround; and More

On Sunday, Sept. 23, at 10 a.m., Chris Berman and analysts Cris Carter, Mike Ditka, Tom Jackson and Keyshawn Johnson (on main set), as well as Suzy Kolber, Merril Hoge and Ron Jaworski (on an adjoining set) will preview NFL week three games on Sunday NFL Countdown Presented by IBM.  ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter and senior analyst Chris Mortensen will provide the day’s headlines and league news.

Correspondents Ed Werder (Tampa Bay at Dallas), Rachel Nichols (Kansas City at New Orleans), George Smith (Cincinnati at Washington), Josina Anderson (Houston at Denver) and Sal Paolantonio (New England at Baltimore) will report from five games.  Highlights:

  • Demaryius Thomas: After catching the 80-yard winning touchdown in overtime as the Broncos upset the Steelers in last year’s AFC Wild Card game, wide receiver Demaryius Thomas has become one of quarterback Peyton Manning’s favorite targets.  Thomas’ rise to stardom is a testament to his drive and perseverance.  His mother and grandmother are currently in prison for selling illegal drugs. Tom Jackson chronicles Demaryius’ rise, from a shattered home to an NFL starting wide receiver.
  • Vernon Davis:  A memorable moment from the 2008 season was San Francisco 49ers head coach Mike Singletary banishing tight end Vernon Davis from the field during a game. Since then, Davis has become a leader and has cited that moment as a turning point in his career. On Sunday, Davis and the 49ers visit the Minnesota Vikings, where Singletary is now an assistant coach. Trent Dilfer looks back at that moment and the different paths Davis and Singletary have taken since the incident.
  • E:60 – Rob Gronkowski:  Countdown will air part of a Jeremy Schaap E:60 feature, “Get Gronk’d,” with arguably the best tight end in the game – one who hardly fits the Patriots’ mold.  In the feature, Emmy Award winning reporter Schaap discovers what it’s like hanging around with the Gronk, especially on a shopping expedition.  The full feature will air Tuesday, Sept. 25, at 7pm on ESPN. (E:60 is ESPN’s Sports Emmy Award winning primetime news magazine.)
  • Eric Mangini Film Room – Patriots at Ravens: Former member of the Patriots coaching staff Eric Mangini will present an Xs and Os analysis of the Patriots at Ravens game and offer key matchups to watch.
  • Hot Topics:  Countdown will debate the impact of the replacement referees on the NFL’s image and the integrity of the game; whether Bears quarterback Jay Cutler’s public berating of his offensive lineman will lead him to lose the team; and more.

Snickers NFL Matchup – Cardinals ‘Cover 2 Trap’; Jaworski Playbook on Tony Romo; Hoge on Peyton Manning; and More

NFL Matchup host Sal Paolantonio and analysts Ron Jaworski and Merril Hoge will preview week three action on Sunday, Sept. 16, on ESPN at 3:30 a.m. (ESPN2 at 8:30 a.m.), taking viewers inside the film room with X’s and O’s analysis of the weekend’s key matchups.  Highlights:

  • X and O Files – Cardinals “Cover 2 Trap”:  In last Sunday’s upset victory in New England, the Cardinals’ defense beat quarterback Tom Brady using disguised coverage.  Jaworski goes inside the Cardinals defensive matchup with the Eagles to see if they can have similar success this week.
  • Game within the Game – Chandler Jones:  As the Patriots head into Baltimore for a rematch of last year’s AFC Championship game, Jaworski shows how New England’s rookie defensive end Chandler Jones could be a tough matchup for Baltimore’s offensive line.
  • Jaws Playbook – Tony Romo’s Pocket Movement: Jaworski demonstrates how Dallas quarterback Tony Romo’s movement in the pocket creates big plays downfield.
  • Hoge on Peyton Manning:  Breaking down play from Monday Night Football that led to Atlanta’s second interception of quarterback Peyton Manning, Hoge, in “Hoge Breakdown,” shows how the Texans’ defense must confuse Manning, much like the Falcons did, to be successful.
  • Hoge on Seattle’s Blitz:  Hoge shows how the Seahawks’ blitz schemes are fundamental to their ability to have success against a high-flying offense such as quarterback Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers.
  • In-between the Lines – Alex Smith’s Pre-snap Adjustment:  Hoge and Jaworski go “in-between the lines” to show how quarterback Alex Smith’s pre-snap adjustments have become an integral part of the San Francisco 49ers offense.
  • Beyond the Film Room – Philip Rivers:  After their 2-0 start, the Chargers face Atlanta Falcons defense coming off three interceptions in one quarter vs. Denver’s Peyton Manning.  NFL Matchup shows quarterback Philip Rivers’ proficiency during his three-touchdown performance against the Titans.

New Fantasy Football-Themed MNF Advertising Spot “Rick” Debuts

The third and final spot in ESPN’s 2012 Monday Night Football “It All Comes Down to Monday Night” advertising campaign debuts this week. Titled “Rick,” the 30-second promo is themed around Fantasy Football. The main character in the spot, Rick, is leading his Fantasy Football game by a seemingly insurmountable margin after Sunday’s games. He’s feeling overconfident and everything seems to be going his way, until his fortune changes on MNF and he loses his matchup by a single point. The creative agency is Wieden + Kennedy NY. View the spot.

ESPN Pays Tribute to NFL Films President Steve Sabol

In memory of NFL Films President Steve Sabol, ESPN Classic pays tribute to his contributions to pro football with a series of programs beginning today at 9 p.m.

Date Time (ET) Show Network
Wed, Sept 19 9-9:30 p.m. Sounds of the Super Bowl ESPN Classic
  9:30-10 p.m. Hidden Images of the Super Bowl ESPN Classic
  10-11 p.m. NFL Films: Lost Treasures Volume 1 ESPN Classic
  11 p.m.-12 a.m. SportsCentury: Vince Lombardi ESPN Classic
Thurs, Sept 20 12-1 a.m. SportsCentury: Pete Rozelle ESPN Classic

Additionally, ESPN President John Skipper, Sunday NFL Countdown host Chris Berman, NFL analyst Ron Jaworski and NFL Insider Adam Schefter offered condolences and memories of Sabol, all of which are available on ESPN Front Row.

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Allie Stoneberg

I advance ESPN’s communications and publicity efforts for NFL studio programming, Monday Night Football, the NFL Draft and our coverage of the Canadian Football League and the Arena Football League. I enjoy meeting journalists in person at games and events and delight in showing them around our Bristol, Conn., campus.