In a bit of a shakeup, albeit a temporary one, CBS is sending three of its NFL Today analysts on the road to join current announcing teams for Week 6. Bill Cowher, Boomer Esiason and Shannon Sharpe will call games involving their former teams, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati and Denver, respectively.
Not to leave the NFL Today studio bare, CBS will bring two analysts from its cable show, That Other Pregame Show from CBS Sports Network to join host James Brown and the lone analyst who will remain in the studio, Dan Marino. Bart Scott and Amy Trask will take the cross-building trek (actually, next door) from That Other Pregame Show to the NFL Today.
Cowher joins Jim Nantz and Phil Simms for Pittsburgh at the New York Jets.
Esiason will work the Cincinnati at Buffalo game with his Westwood One Monday Night Football radio partner, Kevin Harlan and analyst Solomon Wilcots.
And Shannon Sharpe heads out to his former stomping grounds of Denver when the Broncos host the Jacksonville Jaguars. Sharpe will call the game with Ian Eagle and Dan Fouts.
It should be an interesting week for CBS. We'll see if this is something it will do again this season or if it's a one-time thing.
Here's how the schedule will shake out for Week 6:
1:00 PM, ET starts:
- Cincinnati @ Buffalo -- Kevin Harlan/Solomon Wilcots/Boomer Esiason
- Oakland @ Kansas City -- Marv Albert/Rich Gannon
- Pittsburgh @ N.Y. Jets -- Jim Nantz/Phil Simms/Bill Cowher
4:00 PM, ET starts:
- Tennessee @ Seattle -- Greg Gumbel/Dan Dierdorf
- Jacksonville @ Denver -- Ian Eagle/Dan Fouts/Shannon Sharpe
Is this a ratings-based move? Of course it is, but for the most part, we watch the games for the teams and the action, not the announcers. It will give the Tiffany Network some buzz for Week 6 in what otherwise is another bowl of slop for the NFL on CBS.
Ken Insider Jason La Canfora wil be in the CBS studio too, not only that but Bill Cowher, Boomer Esiason and Shannon Sharpe will contribute to the NFL Today Pregame Show from their respective Game Sites too!!!
Interesting. They took Gumbel and Dierdorf off of the Pittsburgh game so Cowher could work with Nantz and Simms. Any other week I'd guarantee Nantz and Simms would be calling the Titans/Seahawks game.
The Cincy/Buffalo game will be enjoyable since Boomer is a good radio color guy. Maybe an upgrade over Wilcots. Sharpe might make the Jax/Den game even less watchable.