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‘Sunday Night Football’ can surpass ‘All in the Family’ and tie ‘American Idol’ for No. 1 run

Al Michaels, Cris Collinsworth and Michele Tafoya speak

Al Michaels, Cris Collinsworth and Michele Tafoya speak onstage at the "Sunday Night Football" panel during the NBCUniversal NBC Sports portion of the 2014 Summer Television Critics Association at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on July 14, 2014. Photo Credit: Getty Images / Frederick M. Brown

It’s not every day a conference call previewing a modern NFL season veers off into references to a TV sitcom that premiered the week of Super Bowl V.

But so it was last week when NBC’s Al Michaels referenced “Sunday Night Football” being TV’s No. 1 prime time show five years in a row, a streak matched only by “All in the Family” (1971-72 to 1975-76) and “The Cosby Show” (1985-86 to 1989-90) and exceeded only by “American Idol” (2005-06 to 2010-11).

“‘American Idol’ holds the record at six, so obviously there’s that big carrot that’s being dangled in front of us, and there’s nothing we’d love better than to tie that record,” Michaels said.

“Ironically, I live in West Los Angeles and I run into [‘All in the Family’ producer] Norman Lear every once in a while at our favorite restaurant and I was kidding him when I last saw him that we have now tied them for second place, five years in a row being No. 1.

“So I want to be able to come in with a foam No. 1 finger next year and wave it at the great Norman, who will be 95 years old at that point, and take over that No. 1 role.”

Said analyst Cris Collinsworth, “I guess that means I play the role of the ‘Meathead’ here.”

Added sideline reporter Michele Tafoya, “Do I get to choose whether I’m Edith or Gloria in this scenario? I kind of like Edith.”

If you’re under 50, ask your parents what all of the above means.

New York Sports