Saturday, September 6, 2008

ESPN's Sunday NFL Countdown returns tomorrow

Here's what to expect from tomorrow's ESPN pregame telecast, other than way too many commentators all trying to scream over each other.

From the folks at Bristol:
ESPN’s Sunday NFL Countdown Presented by IBM will preview the first weekend of the 2008 NFL season Sunday at 11 a.m. ET with Chris Berman and analysts Mike Ditka, Tom Jackson, Keyshawn Johnson and Cris Carter, making his Countdown debut.  Chris Mortensen will provide the day’s headlines and league news, and Hall of Fame quarterback Steve Young will contribute his weekly Sunday segment – “Young is Restless” – featuring his opinion on the week's hottest topics.

The two-hour NFL pre-game show will include reports from Rachel Nichols covering Brett Favre and the New York Jets at Miami Dolphins, Bob Holtzman at the Kansas City – New England game, and Ed Werder in Cleveland for the Cowboys – Browns game.  Other highlights:

Jets Wide Receivers Adjust to Favre
Brett Favre is a Jet and he has spent the last month making adjustments following his trade from Green Bay.  On the field, the Jets receivers might be the people making the biggest adjustments with Favre’s arrival.  Former NFL standout wide receiver Cris Carter visits with the Jets receivers to see why Jerricho Cotchery is doing extra hand-strengthening exercises and why some Jets receivers are spending extra time in practice catching passes from a high-speed JUGS machine.

Patriots: Super Bowl Hangover?
The New England Patriots were just minutes away from a perfect season at Super Bowl XLII.  Now, their challenge for the 2008 season is to avoid Super Bowl hangover.  With the recent history of Super Bowl losing teams having inauspicious seasons the following year, Rachel Nichols reports on whether the Patriots are concerned about a Super Bowl hangover in 2008?

Tony Romo’s Off-Season
Being the Cowboys starting quarterback comes with its share of celebrity, and for Tony Romo; celebrity reached a whole new level this past offseason.  With singer and actress Jessica Simpson as his girlfriend, Romo was just as likely to appear on the gossip pages as he was on the sports pages. The spotlight was on Romo whether he attended a club in Los Angeles, played in a celebrity golf tournament, or sang “Take Me Out To The Ballgame” at Wrigley Field.  Countdown recaps Romo’s offseason as he tried to rebound from another disappointing Dallas playoff defeat.

Mayne Event: Favre vs. the New York Media
Many great players have gone to New York and have been torn down by the tough New York media.  Kenny Mayne, in the season-opening edition of his self-titled “Mayne Event” segment, takes a look at how the New York media is reacting to Brett Favre's arrival, from the eyes of three "fringe" reporters.

Soundtracks: Mike Holmgren
Seahawks head coach Mike Holmgren announced 2008 will be his last season in Seattle.  “Soundtracks” will feature the coach’s last training camp with the Seahawks.

Start 'Em or Sit 'Em with Matthew Berry and Merril Hoge
ESPN’s fantasy football guru Matthew Berry and NFL analyst Merril Hoge will team up this season to debate which players to start or sit each week in the enhanced “Start ‘Em or Sit ‘Em” segment beginning Sunday.  Berry and Hoge will also highlight weekly trends and sleepers.

Berman, Ditka, Jackson, Johnson and Smith will pick the biggest games of the day and tell fans which players will make the biggest impact in NFL’s Week 1 action.  The list of game picks will be posted on www.espn.com/sundaycountdown after the show.
Just take a look at all of those different names. Jesus, that's a lot of people. Anyway, it should be fun and there's nothing like overanalyzing every single angle of every single game for two hours before the action starts!

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