Published On: Sat, Aug 20th, 2016

Report: NFL nixed NBC's plan to have Tirico call Thursday night games

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Mike Tirico’s debut as a play-by-play man for NBC will seemingly have to wait.

The NFL has quashed NBC’s plan to have the longtime voice of ESPN’s “Monday Night Football” call Thursday night games this season, Bob Raissman of The New York Daily News reports.

Tirico joined NBC in a high-profile move earlier this year, at which time it was assumed that he’d take the lead on the network’s newly acquired primetime package while keeping Al Michaels and Cris Collinsworth focused solely on Sunday nights.

“They (Michaels and Collinsworth) are (NBC’s) number one team. So are (CBS’ Jim) Nantz and (Phil) Simms,” NFL VP of communications Brian McCarthy told The Daily News. “We like the idea of having the same booth announcers from Sunday night and Sunday afternoon to carry over to Thursday. We’re hoping for that same magic ‘Sunday Night Football’ has with Al and Cris to carry over to Thursday night.”

The Thursday night package awarded to NBC this year adds another five games to the workload of Michaels and Collinsworth. Avoiding such a scenario was reportedly a factor in NBC’s intentions to have a second broadcast team, but the NFL is opting to hold up the initial agreement to have the primary duo work all games.

Catching on with NBC was a logical move for Tirico as Michaels nears his eventual retirement. With the bridge plan now tossed aside, though, it’s unclear when he’ll next have the opportunity to get back in the booth.

Michaels, 69, remains under contract in his current position through 2017.



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