Monday Night Football
Monday Night Football
Show Name: NFL Monday Night Football
Format: Sports
Running time: 180 minutes or until game ends

Production Companies: National Football League
ABC (1970–2005, 2016–present)
ESPN (2006–present) (USA)
ESPN Deportes (2006–present) (USA, in Spanish)
ESPN Brasil (2006–present) (Latin America, in Portugese)

* Various NFL stadiums
* ESPN Studios, Burbank, California, U.S. (for pregame program)
Picture telecast information
Picture Format: 480i 16:9, High Definition (HDTV)
On-Air Personalities
Game Broadcast Commentators
Mike Tirico (play-by-play)
Jon Gruden (color commentator)
Lisa Salters (sideline reporter)
Studio Hosts
Chris Berman (host)
Stuart Scott (co-host, analyst)
Tom Jackson (analyst)
Cris Carter (analyst, commentator)
Mike Ditka (analyst, commentator)
Keyshawn Johnson (analyst, commentator)
Steve Young (analyst, commentator)
Trent Dilfer (analyst, commentator)
Broadcast information
Original run: 1970-present
First game televised: Cleveland Browns Vs. New York Jets, September 21, 1970 (1970-09-21), Municipal Stadium, Cleveland, OH, won by Browns, 31-21

Monday Night Football began in 1970 on ABC. As of the end of the 2009 season, Monday Night Football has had 626 games. In 2005, the series moved to ESPN. ESPN, much like ABC is owned by the Walt Disney Company. Monday Night Football can also be seen in Canada on The Sports Network (TSN) and Réseau Info-Sports (RIS), and in most of Europe on ESPN America. On 29 March 2010 it was announced that MNF would be shown on ESPN UK, in most of Australia on ESPN Australia, in Portugal on Sport TV 3 and Sport TV HD and on TV 2 Sport (Denmark) in Denmark, and in some regions of the world outside the U.S. on ESPN International. A Spanish language version airs on ESPN Deportes in the U.S. and on ESPN International in Latin America. The games are also made available on regular over-the-air television stations in each participating team's local market, so that households without cable television can still see the telecast. It is also available in Portuguese on ESPN Brasil.



  • Lynn Swann (1994–1997, Super Bowls)
  • Ron Jaworski (#2, 1997)
  • Lesley Visser (sideline reporter, 1998–1999 and during Wild Card playoffs and Super Bowl XXXIV)
  • Eric Dickerson (2000–2001)
  • Melissa Stark (2000–2002)
  • Lisa Guerrero (2003–2005)
  • Suzy Kolber (#2, 2005; Super Bowl XL)
  • Jim Lampley (halftime and Super Bowl XIX co-host)
  • Keith Jackson (Super Bowl XXII host)
  • Chris Berman (halftime host, 1996–1997 and during Wild Card playoffs and Super Bowls)
  • Brent Musburger (studio host, 1990–1995)
  • Robin Roberts (playoffs and Hurricane Katrina telethon co-host, 2005)

Wild Card Playoffs (early game)


  • Gerald Austin (rules analyst, 2012–2017)
  • Chris Berman (#2 play-by-play, 2012–2016)
  • Bonnie Bernstein (#2 sideline reporter, 2006–2007)
  • Lindsay Czarniak (#2 sideline reporter, 2014–2016)
  • Trent Dilfer (#2 color commentator, 2010–2015)
  • Sergio Dipp (sideline reporter, 2017) (Week 1)
  • Mike Ditka (#2 color commentator, 2007–2008)
  • Mike Greenberg (#2 play-by-play, 2007–2009)
  • Brian Griese (#2 color commentator, 2018–present)
  • Mike Golic (#2 color commentator, 2007–2009)
  • Jon Gruden (color commentator, 2009–2017)
  • Ron Jaworski (color commentator, 2007–2011; #2 color commentator, 2006)
  • Suzy Kolber (sideline reporter, 2006–2011 (as fill-in only 2011))
  • Tony Kornheiser (color commentator, 2006–2008)
  • Sean McDonough (play-by-play, 2016–2017)
  • Booger McFarland (field analyst & consultant, 2018–present)
  • Steve Levy (#2 play-by-play, 2019–present)
  • Beth Mowins (#2 play-by-play, 2017–2018)
  • Brad Nessler (#2 play-by-play, 2006, 2010–2011)
  • Rachel Nichols (sideline reporter, 2011–2012; #2)
  • Wendi Nix (sideline reporter, 2011) (Week 1, 4)
  • Sal Paolantonio (sideline reporter, 2011, 2013; #2)
  • John Parry (rules analyst, 2018–present)
  • Rex Ryan (#2 color commentator, 2017)
  • Louis Riddick (#2 color commentator, 2019-present)
  • Dianna Russini (#2 sideline reporter, 2019-present)
  • Laura Rutledge (#2 sideline reporter, 2018-present)
  • Lisa Salters (sideline reporter, 2012–present)[1]
  • Michele Tafoya (sideline reporter, 2006–2010)
  • Joe Tessitore (lead play-by-play, 2018–present)
  • Joe Theismann (color commentator, 2006)
  • Mike Tirico (play-by-play, 2006–2015)
  • Jeff Triplette (rules analyst, 2018–present)
  • Jason Witten (color commentator, 2018–present)
  • Dick Vermeil (#2 color commentator, 2006)
  • Ed Werder (sideline reporter, 2011) (Week 3)
  • Steve Young (#2 color commentator, 2009, 2016)

Monday Night Football Records

  • Most Points
    • 59 – Philadelphia, November 15, 2010 (59-28 vs. Washington)
    • 55 – Indianapolis, October 31, 1988 (55-23 vs. Denver)
    • 52 – San Francisco, December 23, 1991 (52-14 vs. Chicago)
    • 51 – New Orleans, November 24, 2008 (51-29 vs. Green Bay)
    • 50 – San Diego, December 20, 1982 (50-34 vs. Cincinnati)
    • 49 – Philadelphia Eagles , November 15, 2004 (49-21 vs. Dallas Cowboys)
    • 49 – Kansas City Chiefs, December 13, 2004 (49-38 vs. Tennessee Titans
    • 48 – Detroit Lions, October 19, 1981 (48-17 vs. Chicago Bears)
    • 48 – Green Bay Packers, October 17, 1983 (48-47 vs. Washington Redskins)
    • 48 – Baltimore Ravens, December 19, 2005 (48-3 vs. Green Bay Packers)
    • 48 – Tennessee Titans, October 11, 2004 (48-27 vs. Green Bay Packers)
  • Most one-sided games
  • 45 points – Baltimore 48, Green Bay 3 – December 19, 2005
  • 42 points – Miami 45, N.Y. Jets 3 – November 24, 1986
  • 42 points – Seattle 42, Philadelphia 0 – December 5, 2005
  • 38 points – San Francisco 52, Chicago 14 – December 23, 1991
  • 38 points – San Francisco 41, Atlanta 3 – November 9, 1992
  • Highest scoring games
  • 95 points – Green Bay 48, Washington 47 – October 17, 1983
  • 87 points – Kansas City 49, Tennessee 38 – December 13, 2004
  • 87 points - Philadelphia 59, Washington 28 - November 15, 2010
  • 84 points – San Diego 50, Cincinnati 34 – December 20, 1982
  • 82 points – Dallas 43, Seattle 39 – December 6, 2004
  • 80 points – New Orleans 51, Green Bay 29 – November 24, 2008
  • 79 points – Oakland 45, Pittsburgh 34 – October 20, 1980
  • 78 points – Indianapolis Colts 55, Denver Broncos 23 - October 31, 1988
  • 78 points – Dallas 41, Philadelphia 37 – September 15, 2008
  • Lowest Scoring Games
  • 3 points – Pittsburgh 3, Miami 0 – November 26, 2007
  • 9 points – Jacksonville 9, Pittsburgh 0 – September 18, 2006
  • 10 points – San Francisco 7, N.Y. Giants 3 – December 3, 1990

Scheduling problems on local stations

From 1970 to 1997, ABC's Monday Night Football coverage began at 9 pm. Eastern Time, with game kickoff typically occurring at seven minutes past the hour. Coverage was moved one hour earlier to 8 pm. Eastern Time in 1998, with a pre-game show titled Monday Night Blast, hosted by Chris Berman from the ESPN Zone restaurant in Baltimore preceding the start of the game at 8:20 pm. This was done mainly to address ABC's inability to find a suitable 8 p.m. lead-in program for MNF since MacGyver ended its run in 1992 (not even two other series from MacGyver's production company Paramount Television – The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles and The Marshal – saw success, despite the former's ties to Paramount's Indiana Jones film series), and to allow stations to start their late local newscasts nearer to their regular times. Poor ratings caused this experiment to be dropped after one season, with MNF once again moving to 9 p.m. in 1999, though in many NFL markets, the 8 p.m. (Eastern Time) hour from 1999 to 2006 was replaced by affiliates with locally produced and programmed sports discussion and coaches shows, with ABC programming in that hour moved to late night or weekend slots; by the end of the ABC run, the 8 p.m. time-slot was filled with either news magazines and short-lived reality television programs which failed to make any ratings headways due to affiliate pre-emptions.

From 1970 to 1995, Fisher Broadcasting's ABC affiliates in Seattle (KOMO-TV) and Portland (KATU) aired MNF games on a one-hour tape delay starting at 7 p.m. Pacific Time (games normally started in the Pacific Time Zone at 6 p.m., corresponding to 9 p.m. Eastern) in order to accommodate local newscasts (unless the Seattle Seahawks were playing, in which case the game was shown live). The practice, long opposed by viewers and ABC, ended in 1996. KOMO then tried to accommodate having to air its local newscasts earlier than its local station competitors by marketing it as KOMO 4 News Primetime, touting it as a way to watch the news at a more convenient time than during evening rush hour. Additionally, this practice was done in Hawaii, where Honolulu ABC affiliate KITV delayed the game until 7 p.m. Hawaii-Aleutian Time, corresponding to 11 p.m. or midnight Eastern during daylight saving time on the mainland. Thus, the game, which was broadcast live on local radio starting at 3 or 4 p.m., was almost over before it aired on television. In the case of Guam, KTGM, the ABC affiliate in that U.S. territory, aired MNF live on Tuesdays at 11 a.m., as Guam is a day ahead of the United States due to being located on the other side of International Date Line.

The demand to broadcast Monday Night Football games live across the United States over ABC was difficult to reconcile with other prime time programming, which is usually set to begin at a certain local time regardless of time zone. On the East Coast, with MNF beginning at 9 p.m. Eastern Time, there was an hour of primetime in which to schedule regular programming. However, on the West Coast, the games lasted from 6 to 9:30 pm.. Pacific Time (or in the case of Seattle and Portland from 1970 to 1995, 7 to 10:30 p.m.), leaving little or no time for additional network programming on Monday. As a result, network programs scheduled for prime time on the East Coast were broadcast at various hours on the West Coast. Most affiliates pushed the network shows to immediately after the game; however, Los Angeles owned-and-operated station KABC-TV postponed them until 10 p.m. from at least the mid-1990s until 2005 to show trivia contests and other sports shows produced locally (the longest-tenured such show was Monday Night Live, hosted by sports anchor Todd Donoho). Meanwhile, KOMO, one of the stations that tape-delayed MNF in most cases, broadcast new episodes of the sitcom Coach on Saturday afternoons (usually reserved, coincidentally enough, for college football telecasts; much of the series took place on a fictional college campus). Except for Seattle and Portland from 1970 to 1995, ABC World News Tonight was routinely preempted on most West Coast affiliates, though the ABC network-owned stations (e.g. Los Angeles) aired the program earlier in the afternoon.

Since ESPN took over the coverage in 2006, games normally have a kickoff time of 8:30 p.m. Eastern. However, when ESPN airs a doubleheader during the first week of the season, the games respectively start at 7 p.m. and 10:15 p.m. Eastern. There have been issues with local stations in the ESPN era, where stations in each team's home market that air the ESPN simulcast are in most cases ABC affiliates, which must pre-empt Dancing with the Stars to air the NFL. This both forces the affiliate to air that program immediately after late-evening local newscasts, Jimmy Kimmel Live!, and Nightline in Eastern and Central Time Zones only and has resulted in the program's telephone and Internet voting coordinators keeping a late-night voting window open for the market or markets where Dancing with the Stars was pre-empted, and votes from the program's telephone and Internet were not finalized in time, an additional draw is necessary on Tuesday at noon ET (barring UEFA Champions League conflicts). If there are conflicts with the UEFA Champions League, then the additional draw will be held on Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. ET. Either way, the additional draw would have been held at the site of the "Wednesday Night Hockey" late game.

In some cases, the program is moved to a sister station of the ABC affiliate to air live instead (for example, until 2011 in the Minneapolis–St. Paul market, when NBC affiliate KARE took over as the local broadcaster of MNF games, if the Minnesota Vikings were playing a game being simulcast on local ABC affiliate KSTP-TV, sister independent station KSTC-TV aired DWTS live). In 2016, for the opening week Monday night game (the second in a doubleheader) between the Los Angeles Rams and San Francisco 49ers, the ABC-owned stations in both markets (KABC-TV and KGO-TV) would broadcast World News Tonight and DWTS in their live Eastern Time Zone slots, thus airing at 3:30 p.m. and 5 p.m. PT respectively.

Wild Card Playoff

On April 22, 2014, the NFL announced that it had exercised an option in ESPN's recent contract extension for Monday Night Football rights to air a first-round Wild Card playoff game on the channel after the conclusion of the 2014 season. This was the first time that an NFL playoff game was ever broadcast exclusively on cable television in the United States, in lieu of any of the league's broadcast network partners (CBS, Fox, or NBC). However, it was not the first time the ESPN NFL family had broadcast playoff games, with ESPN's network partner ABC having aired playoff games and Super Bowls through the 2005 season under the Monday Night Football package.

The MNF broadcast team of Mike Tirico, Jon Gruden, and sideline reporter Lisa Salters called the game, the first of the 2014–15 NFL playoffs. The Carolina Panthers defeated the Arizona Cardinals 27–16. As with all MNF games, the matchup was simulcast on WJZY in Charlotte and KASW in the Phoenix market to allow local viewers over-the-air access to the game.

However, the cable-only playoff game experiment would only last one season. On May 11, 2015, it was announced that ABC would simulcast a Wild Card playoff game with ESPN for the 2015 season. This was the first NFL game broadcast nationally on ABC since MNF left the network at the end of the 2005 season. The game, announced by the broadcast team of Mike Tirico, Jon Gruden, and Lisa Salters, was the first of the 2015–16 NFL playoffs. The Kansas City Chiefs defeated the Houston Texans 30–0. The ABC/ESPN simulcast will continue for the 2016 season as well.

Pro Bowl

Also as part of the 2011 rights agreement, ESPN was given the exclusive rights to the Pro Bowl from 2015 through 2022. The games will be called by the MNF crew of Sean McDonough, Steve Young, and sideline reporters Lisa Salters.

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