Watchdog

Neil Best leaves no stone unturned in the world of sports media.

Brandon Marshall to perform high-wire act on 'Inside the NFL'

The Chicago Bears' Brandon Marshall sits on the

(Credit: AP / Stephen Brashear)

The venerable “Inside the NFL’’ on Showtime has a different look for this season, including a new night (Tuesday), a new host (Greg Gumbel) and new cast members (Boomer Esiason, Ed Reed).

But all of that is trumped by this: Among the new analysts will be Brandon Marshall, who happens also to be an active player as a receiver for the Bears.

The team approved of the plan, which most weeks...

Read more »

Is NFL overdoing it in prime time?

Al Michaels

(Credit: Al Michaels (Getty Images))

NFL games on Thursdays are nothing new, but putting them on a major broadcast network is – and that’s exactly what the league will do early this season on CBS.

Might that dilute NBC’s Sunday night and ESPN’s Monday night packages, or is there no end to fans’ appetites?

I asked the lead voice of NBC’s “Sunday Night Football,’’ the most-viewed prime time show in America three years running.

“I’m...

Read more »

Ratings three-peat for 'Sunday Night Football'

Al Michaels

(Credit: Al Michaels (Getty Images))

The fact this no longer qualifies as news is news itself: Until 2011-12, no sports program had ranked first in prime time ratings for a full TV season. Now NBC’s “Sunday Night Football’’ has done so three years in a row.

Better yet for the NFL (and NBC): The demographics show an enviably diverse audience, including young people and women represented in significant numbers.

According...

Read more »

Frank Caliendo does Jon Gruden's QB Camp

Frank Caliendo

(Credit: AP)

Outstanding. Simply outstanding work here by Frank Caliendo . . . and Jon Gruden.

No real need for any of my commentary on this genius piece of video from ESPN.

Just watch the video embedded below.

 

 

(Newsday's mobile users can click the link above to watch)...

Read more »

ESPN to broadcast NFL playoff game

Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Marvin Jones makes a

(Credit: Getty)

ESPN will televise an NFL wild-card playoff game this coming season, the first postseason game in the league's modern era not to be shown nationally on a broadcast channel. The game will be simulcast on a broadcast outlet in the markets of the teams involved, the procedure followed for “Monday Night Football’’ on ESPN.

Sports Business Journal reported ESPN -- which already is paying the league...

Read more »

Kevin Costner likes to keep it real

Academy Award-winning actor Kevin Costner, 58, and wife

(Credit: Getty)

To say the NFL “cooperated’’ in the making of “Draft Day’’ would be an understatement.

The league’s presence in the film, which premieres April 11, is extraordinarily extensive, from the use of actual team names and logos to a fake 2014 draft filmed the same weekend as last year’s real one. Both starred Roger Goodell.

Had that not been the case, Kevin Costner would not be starring in...

Read more »

CBS eyes Thursday night lights

Eli Manning throws before a game against the

(Credit: AP)

No one outside Washington, D.C., is lobbied quite as heavily as Howard Katz, the NFL’s scheduling poobah, who frequently fields requests from sports TV executives who would very much like his best matchups on their networks.

Earlier this month I ran into Fox Sports boss Eric Shanks on his way to meeting with Mr. Katz. Thursday CBS Sports’ Sean McManus told me he has met with the big guy, too.

“We...

Read more »

Shaun O'Hara snaps up media roles

Shaun O'Hara is a hot name on the

Shaun O’Hara has not appeared in an NFL game since 2010, but the three-time Pro Bowl center and one-time Super Bowl champion for the Giants said he has not gotten playing entirely out of his system.

“I’ll always wake up in a three-point stance on Sunday mornings and say, ‘You know what? I miss playing. I would love to play,’’’ he said. “But physically, you just know that’s not what’s best.’’

O’Hara,...

Read more »

Did we mention Super Bowl Sunday was warm?

Sunbathing at Jones Beach. (June 24, 2013)

(Credit: Gaby Chiha)

So based on the weather forecast for Tuesday, today (Monday) is the 57th and final day on which the high temperature in East Rutherford, N.J., will not exceed the high of 54 degrees reached on Super Bowl Sunday.

It is an amazing streak that illustrates the glory and power of the NFL - which rolled the dice on a cold weather Super Bowl in what turned out to be a maddeningly cold, snowy winter...

Read more »

Super Bowl is the 'Super Bowl for women'

BEST: Cate Blanchett There were pales galore at

(Credit: Getty Images / Jason Merritt)

The Oscars often have been called “the Super Bowl for women,’’ at least in advertising terms, given the magnitude of the television audience and the fact it skews female.

But in recent years the NFL has not accepted that assertion without a fight, arguing that in fact the Super Bowl for women is . . . the Super Bowl.

The NFL said an average of 44.85 million women watched Super Bowl XLVIII...

Read more »

advertisement | advertise on newsday

Neil Best on Twitter

advertisement | advertise on newsday