Broadcast crews add emotion to NFL games.
They help elevate the excitement when a team completes a touchdown drive or a highlight-worthy play.
Likewise, you can sense distress or sadness in their voices when a player gets injured.
There’s no direct study on how sportscasters affect viewership ratings of these games.
However, those covering the games must be reliable and knowledgeable.
That said, NBC announced that Mike Tirico would be their new anchor for Sunday Night Football, replacing the legendary Al Michaels.
Michaels will be joining Amazon’s coverage of Thursday Night Football with Kirk Herbstreit as his analyst.
NBC's new Sunday Night Football broadcast crew, now official:
🎙 Mike Tirico, replacing Al Michaels
🎙 Cris Collinsworth
🎤 Melissa Stark, replacing Michele Tafoya pic.twitter.com/b7e7t33clA
— Front Office Sports (@FOS) April 19, 2022
While Tirico has big shoes to fill, he isn’t a novice when it comes to covering the NFL.
He was part of ESPN’s Monday Night Football broadcast crew from 2006 to 2015.
The 55-year-old sportscaster has also covered the Olympics, Notre Dame football, and horse racing Triple Crown races.
That vast experience also led him to pinch-hit for some Sunday Night Football games.
Therefore, Tirico has what it takes to create the same pulsating atmosphere that Michaels conjured over his 16 seasons with NBC.
Cris Collinsworth Stays, Michele Tafoya Retires
Field reporter Michele Tafoya will be replaced by Melissa Stark.
Like Tirico, Stark also has extensive experience, notably her three-year stint as Monday Night Football’s sideline reporter.
She was also the anchor of MSNBC’s coverage of the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
Finally, Cris Collinsworth will still be the analyst for Sunday Night Football because he is still under contract.
However, there are reports of contract negotiations that might pay him $12.5 million to stay with NBC.