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Volume 20 No. 46
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Peter King’s fresh take: Reimagining the game story

I bumped into Peter King on the sidelines before the Redskins-Eagles “Monday Night Football” game on Oct. 23.

One of the NFL’s best print reporters for nearly four decades, King was not practicing what most would consider to be traditional journalism. Rather than carrying around a notebook and a pen, King was taking a panoramic shot of Lincoln Financial Field on his iPhone. A high-tech recorder and a couple of studio microphones were sitting at his feet.

The scene was typical King. For a reporter who was born in the Eisenhower administration, King has made a career of changing with the times. He moved from newspapers to magazines to launching his own MMQB website in 2013.

This night, he was working on a podcast as a different way to approach the traditional game story. On Monday night, he interviewed the teams’ radio announcers — the Eagles’ Merrill Reese and the Redskins’ Larry Michael. He had a conversation with former player Ross Tucker on the field. Tucker appears on NBCSN and SiriusXM.

“I wanted people to feel what it’s like and what it sounds like and what it feels like on the field before a game,” King said. “It’s incredibly loud and you can see how amped up the players are before the game.”

The idea behind the podcast is to experiment to see how people want to consume football content. If King finds that his podcasts aren’t popular, he’s prepared to try something else.

“I am an old print guy — I’ve been a sportswriter since 1980,” he said. “But I firmly believe that unless we’re flexible, we’ll all be dinosaurs. … It’s incumbent on all of us to look at the landscape and adjust. If we really want to tell stories, it’s my job to figure out how to allow them to experience it.”
— John Ourand