NFL Media Notes: ESPN Adds Jerome Bettis, Mark Brunell, Ryan Clark As Analysts
ESPN will add former NFLers Jerome Bettis and Mark Brunell to its roster of analysts for "NFL Live" and "SportsCenter." Bettis worked for two seasons on NBC's "Football Night In America." Meanwhile, Steelers S Ryan Clark will contribute to ESPN NFL programming throughout the season and will appear in-studio during the Steelers' bye week and in the postseason, provided the team is not still playing. Clark will not be paid (Adam Harris, Assistant Editor). In Jacksonville, Justin Barney notes Brunell coaches at a local high school and “will not begin work” with ESPN until after his team’s finishes its season Nov. 8 (FLORIDA TIMES-UNION, 8/22).
IF AT FIRST YOU DON'T SUCCEED....: In St. Louis, Jim Thomas notes former NFLer Torry Holt “finds himself as a color analyst for Rams preseason games." Holt “did draft analysis” for ESPN when he was a player and also has “done studio work for the NFL Network.” However, his “first time in a broadcast booth, serving as a game analyst, didn’t go well.” Holt: “Didn’t have a clue of what I was doing, and it scared the (bleep) out of me. ... I was just all over the place. It was overwhelming.” Holt attended the NFL’s Broadcast Bootcamp over the offseason to "get more practice, more tutelage, and more of an understanding of the broadcast game” (ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH, 8/22).
EARNING THEIR STRIPES: In Cincinnati, Joe Reedy noted the Bengals are “garnering plenty of national attention” with HBO’s “Hard Knocks” at training camp coupled with back-to-back playoff appearances. That will “continue for the first three weeks of the regular season.” The Bengals will have the No. 1 crews for CBS, ESPN and Fox “calling their games the first three weeks, which is likely to be the first time in team history they have hit that trifecta” (CINCINNATI.com, 8/21).