Amazon taps Al Michaels to lead ‘Thursday Night Football’ coverage

Veteran sportscaster Al Michaels and ESPN’s Kirk Herbstreit to lead Prime Video exclusive Thursday night football package starting in September, the streaming service confirmed on Wednesday.

Michaels, who served as a play-by-play announcer for NBC Sunday night football since 2006, will join Herbstreit – who is ESPN’s college football commentator – to lead the streaming service’s exclusive NFL games package, under an 11-year deal struck with the league last year.

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Michaels’ signature – who also called Monday night football games for ABC for nearly two decades beginning in 1986 and was an announcer for the Super Bowl, World Series, Stanley Cup Finals and Winter Olympics during a career spanning more than 50 years in sports television – is a major acquisition for Prime Video, which hopes to attract eyeballs and subscriptions with its NFL Thursday night football wrap.

Also: Amazon launches effort to crack down on ‘Thursday Night Football’ sponsors

Michaels will team up with Herbstreit, who also reached a multi-year contract extension with ESPN on Wednesday to continue his role as a studio and game analyst at the sports network. College GameDay and on ABC Saturday night football television broadcasts. NextTV announced earlier this month that Herbstreit would move to Prime Video Thursday night football announcement booth.

“Kirk’s passion for college football and respect for its traditions is unmatched,” ESPN President Jimmy Pitaro said in a statement. “His signature analysis and deep insight has earned him the respect of the fans and teams he covers, and we’re thrilled to ensure Kirk will continue to be there for college football’s greatest moments for years to come. .”

The move ends a busy offseason for NFL announcers in which a number of high-profile talents have changed distribution points, including Fox Sports NFL announcers Joe Buck and Troy Aikman , will now serve as ESPN. Monday night football advertisers. NBC’s Mike Tirico is also set to take Michaels’ place on Sunday night football alongside Cris Collinsworth, according to published reports.

In February, ESPN re-signed Peyton Manning and his Omaha Productions to produce the Monday Night Football with Peyton and Eli alternative show airs on ESPN2 opposite ESPN Monday night football TV show.

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