Reviewing The Announcers Around The NFL From Week 1

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As we hit the second NFL weekend of 2017, it’s time to look back at some of the announcers from last weekend. Specifically the new crews, but also NBC’s team. Al and Cris are back for another season. I love Al Michaels, but he seems to be losing a little bit off the fastball. For years he was all over the rules. Lately he seems a little confused. It’s hard to keep up with all the changes and evolving interpretations, but he has not been sharp like previous seasons. Forgetting there is a penalty or incorrectly predicting one. I hold him to high standards. Hopefully this is just a blip on the screen. I’m also upset that Bob Costas is largely out of the mix. He apparently did something before the game on opening night, but unfortunately I missed it. Costas will host the Super Bowl in February because Mike Tirico will already be gone for the Olympics. Tirico is taking over for Costas in that role as well.

The new CBS pairing features Tony Romo replacing Phil Simms as Jim Nantz’s partner. Apparently Romo is into predicting what play will be run. I saw highlights of their calls and a little bit of that game on RedZone, but can’t really give an informed opinion until I see more of them. Of course Sunday afternoons will still feature Joe, Troy, and Erin working many big NFC contests.

Finally, there was Monday Night Football on ESPN. I think Sean McDonough is an excellent announcer when it comes to college football and basketball. Over the years I have enjoyed him doing baseball for the Red Sox, and also his national work for ESPN. He just doesn’t seem like a great fit calling NFL games. I’m not sure why. Other people have shared less than complimentary thoughts with me. I’m trying to keep an open mind. It took me some time until I became used to Tirico on Mondays, and again I’m a big fan of McDonough.

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The huge story coming in was Beth Mowins. She became the first woman to call an NFL regular season game in 30 years, and the first to call one nationally. Twitter was filled with support from numerous people. I thought ESPN sideline reporter Allison Williams captured it best. In addition to offering praise, she added that it felt normal. I am familiar with Beth. She has called college football for years on ESPN, and also preseason NFL games for the Raiders. Despite being overdue, Beth’s performance did not seem like a big deal to me. I thought she did pretty well, except for a minor stumble before halftime when she didn’t realize that the clock was going to run out before a punt was required. Amazingly, Beth was almost an afterthought. She mocked Rex Ryan before the game even started because he moved around and didn’t stand on his spot for the opening camera shot.

I thought the social media highlights of this game would come from Rex, but sideline reporter Sergio Dipp had an awkward debut covering an NFL game. Twitter went nuts over his introductory comments, and some became upset that we were not treated to more later in the broadcast.

 

Enjoy Week 2!

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