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SBD/Issue 245/Sports Media
Five New NFL Pregame Show Talents To Watch This Season
Published September 11, 2008
Last week, I gave viewers five college football broadcasters worth watching this season. This week, I give you five that viewers are not going to want to miss on Sundays during NFL pregame shows: Spero Dedes and Warren Sapp of NFL Network, Cris Carter of ESPN, Michael Strahan of Fox and Dan Patrick of NBC.
Williams Lauds Dedes For Handling Of
"NFL GameDay Morning" Hosting Abilities
WARREN SAPP: Speaking of Sapp, he is my second broadcaster to watch. The former Pro Bowl NT is animated and informed. As a player he was famous for his “on-the-field analysis” that he provided freely to all his opponents. Now on set with Dedes and NFL Net veteran Faulk, Sapp is a natural. Just like during his playing days, he is not afraid to speak his mind. Sunday, he was one of the few pregame analysts to pick the Ravens to up-end the Bengals. Sapp: “I am telling you, I love Marvin Lewis but his team can’t play defense and the Ravens can. I think Baltimore will be able to run and to keep the ball away from the Bengals. The Ravens play great defense, they will score enough points to win and will shut down the Bengals. I smell upset here.” Bingo.
CRIS CARTER: Over at ESPN’s “Sunday NFL Countdown,” Carter is the new kid, joining returning commentators Chris Berman, Mike Ditka, Keyshawn Johnson and Tom Jackson. But Carter is a good addition. His calm, confident manner of analysis complements the bold style of Johnson and Ditka. An example of his ability to provide sharp insight was proven when he was quick to debunk the theory that Brett Favre has to learn the Jets’ offensive system. He said, “I’m so sick of people talking about the system. In the National Football League, most of the systems make the players. But, when someone like Brett Favre shows up, he’s an elite player, he’s a rare talent. When he shows up, you create a system for him because of his ability.”
Strahan's Experience In Front Of The Camera
Shows In Debut On "Fox NFL Sunday"
DAN PATRICK: Patrick is not new to television. After a year off the air, though, he has returned to be part of “Football Night In America” on NBC. He wanted to reprise his role as part of the best highlight team in TV history with partner Keith Olbermann. The duo’s work on ESPN’s “SportsCenter” is taught in journalism schools all around the country, earning them not only Emmys, but a best-selling book that helped spawn the TV show “Sports Night.” Now Patrick and Olbermann are back together again, and this is just what “Football Night” needs.
These are my picks for your NFL Sunday. If you are a fan, these guys are the ones to watch.
Jim Williams is a seven-time Sports Emmy Award-winning TV producer, director and writer who lives in Baltimore. He will be reviewing sports programming occasionally for SportsBusiness Daily and SportsBusiness Journal. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.