After ESPN moved on from Joe Tessitore and Booger McFarland, reports said the network would look within the company for their replacements. And that’s just what they did, according to veteran media reporter Jim Miller. (The Athletic’s Richard Deitsch also confirmed.)
ESPN’s “Monday Night Football” booth will reportedly feature Steve Levy, Brian Griese and Louis Riddick. The network typically carries two “Monday Night Football” games the opening week, and Miller reports the other game of the night will feature Chris Fowler and Kirk Herbstreit. Although Miller says the college football season could affect the second game.
So the opening weekend will feature Levy, Griese and Riddick calling Titans vs. Broncos and Fowler and Herbstreit calling Steelers vs. Giants.
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ESPN has not made the announcement official, but these picks shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone following this story. Levy and Riddick have been rumored ever since it was announced that ESPN was looking for a new booth, and the fact they were looking from within the company limited the choices.
Still, many will hope this booth will be an improvement over Tessitore and McFarland. ESPN has been tinkering with the “Monday Night Football” booth for years now, trying to make it work.
Let’s look at the names being brought in.
Levy has been with ESPN in some capacity since 1993.
In that time he’s had a variety of roles including “SportsCenter” appearances, announcing hockey games, being on the college football coverage team and more. Joining the “Monday Night Football” booth won’t be new to him, either. He called one of the Week 1 matchups in 2019 alongside Griese.
Riddick is a former NFL player, who played safety from 1991 to 1998. In 2013 he became an on-air talent for ESPN, where he’s been highly praised for his work on the network’s NFL shows. In addition to being a former player, Riddick was also a pro scout and director of pro personnel. He offers some in-depth insights and should be a valuable asset to the booth.
Griese is a former Pro Bowl NFL quarterback. He’s worked at ESPN since 2009 and has primarily been used as a college football analyst. As we mentioned before, he worked alongside Levy in a “Monday Night Football” game in 2019. He has plenty of other experience calling NFL games as well. He worked as a radio color commentator for two seasons (2010-2012) with the Broncos. He returned to the Broncos’ booth in 2018 to call three preseason games as well.