Report: After Missing Out on Tony Romo, ESPN Will Target Peyton Manning
After coming up short in the Tony Romo sweepstakes, ESPN is going to attempt to pull a Hail Mary with another former NFL quarterback.
According to The New York Post, ESPN’s “first call” now that Romo is off the board will be to two-time Super Bowl winner Peyton Manning.
Looking to bolster its talent on NFL broadcasts (specifically Monday Night Football), ESPN is hopeful this could be the year the 43-year-old decides to try his hand at being an analyst.
As The Post notes, the amount of money ESPN is prepared to offer Manning via parent company Disney is substantial enough that the former star QB would have to listen.
Though he hasn’t called any NFL games, Manning has worked for ESPN since 2018 breaking down current NFL players on the ESPN+ series Detail.
As of now, ESPN’s Monday Night Football booth only consists of Joe Tessitore and Booger McFarland.
If Manning doesn’t join them, it is possible the network could turn to another ex-quarterback, Kurt Warner. Should they retire, current NFL players Greg Olsen, Drew Brees, Philip Rivers and Larry Fitzgerald would all be potential options for the MNF booth.
No matter what happens with ESPN and Manning, Romo and CBS are in good shape for 2020 and beyond.
To keep Romo in the fold, the network signed him to a long-term contract with an annual salary of around $17 million per season, more than double the previous NFL high of $8 million per year that John Madden received in the 1990s.
Interestingly, CBS attempted to sign Manning before inking Romo to the long-term extension. However, since he couldn’t commit, the network went with Romo instead. Had Manning signed on with CBS, it is likely Romo then would have signed with ESPN, according to The Post.
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