Thought we already had reached the saturation point for Super Bowl pre-game programming?
CBS is planning 6 ½ hours of pre-game fare on Sunday, beginning at 11:30 a.m. with That Other PreGame show (the one featuring former Raiders executive Amy Trask and former NFL linebacker London Fletcher, among others).
That’s followed by an NFL Films retrospective on the NFL season at noon and CBS lead analyst Tony Romo’s behind-the-scenes look at his trip to the Super Bowl at 1 p.m.
Here’s what’s on tap for CBS’ NFL Today pre-game show at 2 p.m.:
▪ Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson and Denver linebacker Von Miller will be guest analysts, and Joe Namath will appear on set for a segment.
▪ President Donald Trump is being interviewed by CBS’ Margaret Brennan. The interview was taped Friday and will air on Face The Nation at 10:30 a.m. Sunday, with highlights of that interview then airing on the pre-game show at approximately 3:30 p.m.
▪ Pre-game features include a piece on Super Bowl 3 between the Jets and Colts; a look at the host city of Atlanta and its role in the Civil Rights movement, including interviews with Bernice King, who is Martin Luther King’s daughter, and former civil rights activist, Atlanta mayor and United Nations ambassador Andrew Young.
▪ Also planned: “Difference Makers,” a feature which chronicles key plays in recent Super Bowl history.
▪ CBS’ most offbeat piece: a trip to the factory which has made Super Bowl footballs for decades.
▪ In another feature, Nate Burleson and Atlanta music producer Jermaine Dupri take a driving tour visiting some of the city’s famed music sites.
▪ There’s the obligatory video diary, as CBS cameras followed Rams offensive tackle Andrew Whitworth and his family as he prepares for the Super Bowl.
▪ There will be Rams features on former Dolphins defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh (including an interview with his friend, billionaire investor and philanthropist Warren Buffett), plus a Burleson interview with Rams coach Sean McVay and a Boomer Esiason interview with Rams quarterback Jared Goff.
▪ On the Patriots side, Romo will interview Tom Brady; Phil Simms and Bill Cowher interview coach Bill Belichick and CBS will have a feature on Patriots twin brothers Jason and Devin McCourty.
James Brown, Esiason, Simms, Cowher and Burleson host from one set. Ian Eagle will host on a second set.
THIS AND THAT
No analyst in recent history does a better job anticipating play calls than Romo, who will be working his first Super Bowl, alongside Jim Nantz.
“My partner had to have been, in his Cowboy days, some sort of sick film room guru who took the time that was needed to completely solve the puzzle,” Nantz said during a conference call Wednesday, reflecting on Romo’s excellent work anticipating plays in the Patriots-Chiefs AFC Championship Game. “He and Tom Brady are seeing the same thing. People think Tony is a fortune teller, but this isn’t guesswork and it isn’t psychic ability.”
Though Romo would probably be an excellent offensive coordinator, he’s happy announcing.
“I felt the energy, the stuff you love about the game; you feel that when you’re an analyst,” he said. “I never say never to anything … [but] I love where my life is. I’m sure, at some point, 25 years from now, you’ll want to do something competitive in that regard, but I feel very happy and comfortable. I like where I’m at. I really enjoy the schedule. I have three young boys. I have a wife. So, I don’t think about that right now at all. No.”
▪ Something unique about the HBO “Real Sports” piece this week on ESPN’s Adam Schefter: Both Schefter and the reporter on the piece — former Channel 10 sports anchor Jon Frankel — married women who lost their husbands during the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
Schefter said: “There are few things in life more satisfying than getting a big story. It’s like a drug. You become addicted to it. When I get a text about something that’s going on, my heart starts pounding. Pounding. Like, I could feel adrenaline through my body. And when you post it the number of retweets and likes becomes like a slot machine. The numbers just start goin’ crazy.”
There are re-airs of the show on HBO at 5 p.m. Saturday, 10:15 p.m Wednesday and 5:30 p.m. next Friday.
▪ Couple quick media notes: As The New York Post reported in January, Bob Costas has quietly left NBC, largely because there weren’t enough assignments that interested him. He will continue to work for MLB Network, including calling about 20 MLB games a year… Per The Sporting News, former Ohio State coach Urban Meyer is expected to join Fox as a college football studio analyst.