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Report: Mayock will replace Theismann and Millen; Gus Johnson in mix for role too

M. Mayock

The NFL Network is admitting their mistake in hiring Joe Theismann last year.  And Matt Millen the year before.

The network’s choice to replace them is going to make a lot of fans, including this one, very happy.

SI.com’s Richard Deitsch reports Mike Mayock will indeed replace Theismann and Millen on NFLN’s Thursday Night Football telecasts next year.  Peter King first raised the possibility on Monday.  In a terrible bit of self-scouting, NFL Network passed on Mayock last year in favor of Theismann.

The league isn’t commenting on the report yet, and probably won’t make an official announcement for weeks.

Deitsch notes the league could also replace play-by-play man Bob Papa.  Gus Johnson is reportedly under consideration for the role.

Papa was never the problem.  He does a great job and brings a higher level of familiarity with the NFL than almost any play-by-play guys working presently.   He’d work well with such a hardcore football personality like Mayock.

With all that said, we’d enjoy listening to Gus Johnson announce, well, basically anything.

Either way, NFL fans will win with this change in personnel to Mayock.   Thanks.

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81 Responses to “Report: Mayock will replace Theismann and Millen; Gus Johnson in mix for role too”
  1. chadmurdigan says: Apr 14, 2011 3:18 PM

    Finally, change you can believe in.

    Next, Showtime needs to move Warren Sapp to the sidelines and replace him on Inside the NFL.

  2. wetpaperbag2 says: Apr 14, 2011 3:21 PM

    Mayock..yes. Gus Johnson…no. Johnson only knows one volume…LOUD! He overreacts to EVERY play. One would think a player made an outstanding td catch instead of a 2-yard dump off pass reception.

  3. umbskinsfan says: Apr 14, 2011 3:22 PM

    good news….as a skins fan i love thiesman….but as a football fan I am glad to see a change to the Thursday Night Football line up

    those broadcasts were embarrassing

  4. bobwhitequail says: Apr 14, 2011 3:22 PM

    Mayock good! Millen bad.

    Millen reminds me of Jim Mora Jr. He just keeps charming his way into new jobs. He has zero talent but he always wins people over. Please just let this Millen dude fade away. Do not bring him back in any other role even remotely connected to the NFL.

  5. terrellblowens says: Apr 14, 2011 3:22 PM

    Best news I’ve heard all day. Mayock knows his stuff and is a very good evaluator of talent and Gus Johnson is just fun to listen to because he gets so excited.

    Millen sucks so hard that I watch games on mute. Not only does he get player names wrong but he pretends he knows the strategies to building a successful team. In one game between the Texans and Eagles he screwed up 3 or 4 different names. Good riddance. NFL network is finally getting some good announcers for their games

  6. m4carrol says: Apr 14, 2011 3:23 PM

    At least Detroit is going to be happy. Millen got fired again

  7. abengalfan says: Apr 14, 2011 3:23 PM

    Mayock for Theismann and Millen YES!
    Please leave B Papa in announcer seat though.

  8. isphet71 says: Apr 14, 2011 3:24 PM

    No More Matt Millen being crammed down our throats?

    Maybe I can watch football with my volume un-muted this year. I’m pumped!

    Beer me.

  9. kd75 says: Apr 14, 2011 3:25 PM

    Bob Papa> Gus Johnson. No to Gus!

  10. jaggedmark says: Apr 14, 2011 3:26 PM

    Gus makes HIMSELF bigger than the game, and I don’t like that.

    Negative comment all you like, but it’s true.

  11. canadaramsfan says: Apr 14, 2011 3:28 PM

    Good… Enough said

  12. owen16 says: Apr 14, 2011 3:29 PM

    Unfortunately it took William Clay Ford 8 years to admit the mistake of hiring Millen

  13. siggy00 says: Apr 14, 2011 3:29 PM

    Gus Johnson as a PBP man is aces. He could make a funeral exciting.

  14. nyctexan says: Apr 14, 2011 3:29 PM

    Gus Johnson is the man

  15. richc111 says: Apr 14, 2011 3:29 PM

    Has any fan listening to an NFL game ever been a fan of Theisman. I for one can’t stand listening to him, and I know a lot of my buddies that watch football are the same way. I am sure others will have a different opinion but this goes back a decade. The same with Millen. I wonder who made these choices in the 1st place. Hopefully they will get it right this time.

  16. 49ersforever says: Apr 14, 2011 3:30 PM

    Gus Johnson is the most overrated and annoying commentator of all time.

  17. dgforreal says: Apr 14, 2011 3:30 PM

    Sweet.

  18. thingamajig says: Apr 14, 2011 3:31 PM

    Now we can turn off the mute button.

  19. hendawg21 says: Apr 14, 2011 3:32 PM

    Yes I like Theismann but not as in the booth…and as for Millen the way he screwed up the Lions who could take anything he had to say seriously!

    They should get Brent Musberger LOL “YOU ARE LOOKING LIVE”

  20. honolulublue says: Apr 14, 2011 3:33 PM

    Excellent now ESPN needs to do the same to Millen.

  21. ronturdgundy says: Apr 14, 2011 3:35 PM

    If this is somehow the result of the lockout, even indirectly, then it was all worthwhile.

  22. hokiez says: Apr 14, 2011 3:38 PM

    Man I always cringe when Millen announces Virginia Tech games. Hint, ESPN (don’t replace him with Theismann or MacGwire)!

  23. dirtdawg55 says: Apr 14, 2011 3:39 PM

    Wetpaperbag2 hit it square on the head. Gus Johnson doesn’t do play by play. He yells. It is entertaining for a play or two but it is annoying over a game, never mind a season. Mayock’s insights are as good as they get but he has a tendency to amp it up as well. Having those two side by side will be too much shock jock and scream queen for me.

    Whats next? Adding Gruden to the booth?

    Papa would be a great sidekick for Mayock. Understated and professional, he can announce, Mayock can analyze. I would watch that all day long.

  24. whitemike55 says: Apr 14, 2011 3:40 PM

    Mayock is most respected talent evaluator out there… I can’t wait to hear all of his insight about the current NFL players.

    Also would love to have Gus Johnson… Gotta love his enthusiasm!

    15, 10, 5 TOUCHDOWN ANDREEE JOHNSONNNNNNN

  25. mantei says: Apr 14, 2011 3:41 PM

    Gus + Mayock = best. booth. ever.

  26. richatthelake says: Apr 14, 2011 3:42 PM

    Wow, even with a lockout we can get good news. Millen & Theisman were awful, Mayock is a huge improvement!

  27. chapnastier says: Apr 14, 2011 3:43 PM

    Gus Johnson is the worst commentator on TV. Utter garbage.

  28. atcojack says: Apr 14, 2011 3:44 PM

    Mike Mayock and Gus Johnson.

    That’s the dream team right there!

  29. chatham10 says: Apr 14, 2011 3:45 PM

    I think Gus is good for basketball but I’m not so sure about football.

  30. raider8er says: Apr 14, 2011 3:48 PM

    Once upon a time, Matt Millen was the best color guy in the game. That is why Detroit hired him.

    People don’t remember the former but the will never forget the latter.

  31. Bob says: Apr 14, 2011 3:55 PM

    What is the fascination with Gus Johnson? His lone talent is screaming after every play.

  32. egls7 says: Apr 14, 2011 3:56 PM

    Suddenly im going to start watching alot of nfl network games!

  33. rcali says: Apr 14, 2011 4:00 PM

    Thank you NFL network. You’re up next ESPN.

  34. cambodianbreastmilk says: Apr 14, 2011 4:01 PM

    GUS JOHNSON IS HORRIBLE! Has NFL Network lost their friggin minds!?!?!? All the guy does is scream at everything and try to overhype the situation.

    NO! NO! NO!

  35. DonRSD says: Apr 14, 2011 4:04 PM

    i hate Gus Johnson.

    all he does is scream on the air.

    for the good of America, keep bob papa or my tv will be muted due to Gus Johnson.

    that’s a shame because Mike Mayock is brilliant, but Gus IS that bad & THAT loud for no reason.

  36. rushbacker says: Apr 14, 2011 4:10 PM

    Aside from the abortion that was Tony Kornholer in the MNF booth, I thought the original pairing of Papa and Millen was possibly the worst I’ve heard. Sooo bland, and utterly lacking in any type of insight. The addition of someone that knows what he’s talking about will be very refreshing.

    In the end, that’s what a lot of fans are looking for these days– legitimately knowledgeable announcers that bring some depth to their analysis and make the GAME the focus rather than their own personalities. Particularly, give us the info we can’t alway see on our TV screens– tell us when the defense is consistently rolling coverage towards one receiver, and what route combos the O is using to attack that coverage. Tell us when the safety is creeping into the box before the snap, or if the slot corner is showing blitz. I love listening to Jaws and Gruden dissect Cutler’s footwork, and stuff like that. The days of Madden circling the biggest beer gut with the telestrator are over.

    A guy that I thought was great was Dick Vermeil. His commentary was intelligent and professional. He did a couple of pre-season games with Jaworski a few years ago, and I thought they were great together. I wish somebody would give Vermeil another shot, even with limited experience I thought he was far better than some of the stiffs like Gumbel that have been trotted out in recent years.

  37. nflguru12 says: Apr 14, 2011 4:12 PM

    Millen must have surrendered the compromising photos of NFL Network Execs.

    Never understood how a guy could bury a franchise with idiot decisions and become a expert commentator? Every time he opens his mouth I think of Detroit, and wonder why this clown gets a microphone.

    Reminds me of the time Jim Kelly and Anthony Munoz were on ESPN telling everyone what it takes to win a Super Bowl with a 0-6 combined record.

    Thanks, but no thanks

  38. joe6606 says: Apr 14, 2011 4:16 PM

    Dump Papa immediately.

    Easily the WORST announcer in the all of sports. I have NEVER listened to someone who can single handedly suck all the life out of watching an NFL game as much as he does.

    Absolutely horrendous. How he has so many gigs shocks and appalls me.

  39. rdssc says: Apr 14, 2011 4:16 PM

    Gus does a great job with the NFL on CBS.
    Bills fans are well aware of him because he gets the worst CBS game every week. I would enjoy him on Thursdays, Mayock can be a little too technical for the average fan so Gus would liven up the broadcast more than Papa.

  40. alpod says: Apr 14, 2011 4:16 PM

    Remember the Sunday Night Football team on ESPN? Theisman, Paul Maguire and mike Patrick… Worst. crew. ever.

  41. blackglass3 says: Apr 14, 2011 4:24 PM

    Leave Bob Papa alone, anyone would have trouble sounding interesting next to those two boobs.

    ANd get Dennis Miller for the 3rd seat!! (kidding)

  42. alanschech says: Apr 14, 2011 4:25 PM

    New broadcast booth….now all we need are some games next year

  43. hendawg21 says: Apr 14, 2011 4:26 PM

    You know with Gus Johnson he could make throwing a dirty pair of underwear in the washer sound like it was play of the day…

  44. clayshair says: Apr 14, 2011 4:28 PM

    The only commentator more annoying than Theisman and Millen is Paul McGwire. These two plus Papa were the worst announcing crew in history. You could not have done worse.

    Anyone, or silence, is an upgrade.

  45. tomoneoftwo says: Apr 14, 2011 4:32 PM

    Happiness is not hearing or seeing Matt Millen on any network! He has been a joke since he was hired by the Lions. I can’t believe anyone could ever take him seriously.

  46. brintfatre says: Apr 14, 2011 4:34 PM

    Millen to ESPN for MNF guaranteed! He’s their kind of guy… if it was up to them Kornheiser would still be there too!

  47. red513 says: Apr 14, 2011 4:40 PM

    I’m happy to see Millen and Theismann go, and I’m looking forward to Mayock in the booth. I wouldn’t mind seeing Papa stay. I think Gus Johnson’s theatrics could get old after a while. I’d like to see Charles Davis get a shot at national games too. He’s been really good in the booth for preseason games and the few regular season dogs they’ve assigned him to do. (I’m a Rams fan, and Davis has done several of our games over the last couple of years).

  48. tednancy says: Apr 14, 2011 4:43 PM

    While I like the Mayock addition, I cannot stand the notion of Gus Johnson screaming at me on Thursday nights.

    I know all the stock reasons why the mob likes Gus: he gets excited. He has passion. So does my nine year old.

    I always liked Pat Summerall because of his spare, economy-of-words approach. Same for Marv Albert, Don Criqui, and the incomparable Brent Musberger.

    Gus is a novelty, I get it. Let’s hope the fad ends soon.

  49. tednancy says: Apr 14, 2011 4:48 PM

    P.S.: Millen was a horrible GM, but let’s not forget what a tough, dedicated player he was.

    His insight into what’s happening on the field has always been interesting, unlike most ex-jocks working the broadcast booth.

    I know it’s trendy to dump on the guy and if I were a Lions fan I might feel slightly different, but as far as his football nuts-n-bolts insight, I remain a fan.

  50. dccowboy says: Apr 14, 2011 4:52 PM

    Hallelujah!! Now I won’t have to mute the broadcast of Thursday Night games.

  51. sdisme says: Apr 14, 2011 4:56 PM

    Yayyyy. Big improvement.

    I hope Bob Poppa stays, he deserves to work with someone decent.

  52. melikefootball says: Apr 14, 2011 5:00 PM

    Happy to see Theisman, I think man, gone but Gus is another announcer that feels he and what he says is more important than the game. trying to have more and more entertainment from the booth is taking away from the game.

  53. norcaleagles says: Apr 14, 2011 5:21 PM

    Congrats to Mayock. He’s been putting in great work at NFL Network over the past few years.

  54. sportsmediacritic says: Apr 14, 2011 5:30 PM

    Mayock and Johnson will be the best booth in football. It would be a dream if that was the MNF booth (and if MNF would lose Hank Williams Jr. intros).

    Mayock’s slow mo replay of the Marshawn Lynch run against the Saints is an utter classic. “Get off me!!!”

  55. bonecity7 says: Apr 14, 2011 5:34 PM

    tednancy,

    I didn’t know I was a part of a mob!!? Funny, I thought I liked Gus Johnson all by myself….!!

    I saw parts of just about every game last year (Sunday Ticket) and found games called by Johnson to be among the most enjoyable.

    How does Nancy put up with your pompous ass?

    (Sorry….I probably should have demonstrated an economy-of-words)

  56. weswelkerspornstash says: Apr 14, 2011 5:50 PM

    Mayock and Papa would rock!!!

  57. watters7 says: Apr 14, 2011 5:55 PM

    What about Jon Gruden? The most over-rated announcer in sports! “This guy is an NFL receiver.” Really? Gruden is Captain Obvious.
    He win a rung with Dungy’s team. Big deal.

  58. azskinsfan says: Apr 14, 2011 6:03 PM

    Poor Joe, the man can’t keep a job!

  59. schmitty2 says: Apr 14, 2011 6:28 PM

    Gus Johnson- “Peterson to the right side…ooohhhhhh 3 yard gain! had he broke 7 more tackles and made it 80 yards it would have a been a TOUCHDOWN!!!!!!”

  60. giggetygiggety says: Apr 14, 2011 6:29 PM

    Thumbs up for Mayock but not for Johnson. Gets way to excited about everything. I would much rather see Charles Davis get the chance.

  61. packattack1967 says: Apr 14, 2011 6:32 PM

    Papa blows too. I have to turn it off after too many “in space”s and “as well”s. He makes my headache.

  62. Burritto says: Apr 14, 2011 6:32 PM

    I like Gus and all, but I’d love a season of Papa and Mayock. I kinda understand why MNF has had guys like Madden explaining to a prime time audience what the 3-4 is, but it would make sense for the NFLN to cater to a more knowledgable audience.

    I want analysis on WR routes, hand usage for linemen, QB progressions… the kind of stuff that Mayock can definitely speak to.

  63. macjacmccoy says: Apr 14, 2011 6:46 PM

    Thank god. I honestly watched all the NFC East games on mute last year because of Theisman. The guy is such a homer it ruined those games. The none NFC East games werent any better.

    I dont care who replaces him as long as I dont have to listen to that idiot anymore Im happy.

  64. rajbais says: Apr 14, 2011 6:48 PM

    Just do it!!!!

    Gus Johnson has paid his dues and no longer deserves to play 2nd and 4th fiddle to Jim Nantz during the NCAA Basketball Tournament and NFL regular season respectively.

    Papa is too unenthusiastic!!!!

    Football should be fun and it’s time for NFL Network to have energy in the stinking booth!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Johnson with his ability to entertain (which we all honestly do prefer!!! If you’re in denial, you’re a poser and are woosing out over nothing); and Mayock’s football obsession … what’s not to love????

  65. 54bear55 says: Apr 14, 2011 6:56 PM

    Best football news in awhile. I had to mute the Thursday night games. It was seriously painful listening to Millen and Theismann every week.

  66. slobberknockered says: Apr 14, 2011 7:19 PM

    Mayock is the “ish”…PERIOD! Best football man in the biz.

  67. dbellina says: Apr 14, 2011 7:27 PM

    BEST DAY EVER!!

  68. frankdatank23 says: Apr 14, 2011 8:12 PM

    the what network ???? oh sorry, i dont pay for that “ish”

  69. bigtrav425 says: Apr 14, 2011 8:28 PM

    Horrible move..i love Theisman but i do hate Millen…..and i hate Mayock…but id do anything to get Johnson if i was them

  70. Canyonero says: Apr 14, 2011 8:35 PM

    Oh happy day!

    Mayock is great at football. Theismann tries too hard to be positive and comes across insincere. Plus he never stops talking. He wasn’t Bryant Gumble-level terrible at football broadcasting, but not good.

    Matt Millen just has no credibility. Sorry, big guy, but you wrecked the Detroit Lions. And kept every dime of the money.

    I’m a Solomon Wilcots fan & hope he gets a shot at a night game soon. But Mike Mayock is definitely an improvement.

  71. randolph32 says: Apr 14, 2011 8:43 PM

    Gus Johnson could make those bad NCAA tourney games interesting, who know’s his stuff, ie, not full of crap….even though he is a bit excitable.

    Bob Papa, IN SPACE, please go find some other SPACE!

  72. chedberg says: Apr 14, 2011 10:22 PM

    This only means something to the ten people that get the NFL Network.

    I hope they work on that after the labor situation.

  73. mastafade says: Apr 14, 2011 10:51 PM

    THANK YOU! The only thing worse than listening to Theisman talk was listening to Millen respond to that talk. Papa wasn’t bad, but Gus and Mayock will be awesome. Seriously, that other crew made those thursday night games feel like the preseason local broadcasts. Only worse.

  74. nfl fan says: Apr 14, 2011 11:35 PM

    Don’t do it NFL Network. Bob Papa rules!

    He’s one of the few play-by-play announcers that knows football and isn’t a homer like Merrill Reese and others that root for their team in their announcing. A true professional that gives your broadcast some credibility. You had no business hiring those play by play boobs, what were you thinking?

  75. tatum064 says: Apr 15, 2011 12:12 AM

    Gus would be great!!! Papa was good, but a bit flat. Overreacting aside.. Johnson-Mayock would be the best booth in years….i’d easily put Johnson above Tirico.

  76. raiderinpa says: Apr 15, 2011 9:39 AM

    Theisman to Mayock: “Hey, break a leg!!”

  77. obsession55 says: Apr 15, 2011 1:52 PM

    Yes, the mute button can come off NFL Network games now, but its stayin on for ESPN MNF games until that moron Jaws is fired!!

  78. duece5 says: Apr 15, 2011 2:59 PM

    I’m not sure what skeletons Millen has had on the guys in Detroit, or at the NFL Network, or ESPN, but that dude is only good at this: being terrible!!

    He has “stolen” money from every organization that has paid him. but hey, if someone thinks your good, and they pay you, are you going to tell them no.

    Thank God Detroit, NFL Network, told Milly no.

    C’mon ESPN, finish it off so we don’t have to “not hear” him on mute anymore!!!!!

  79. stetai says: Apr 16, 2011 9:04 PM

    Mayock is a good choice and Gus Johnson would be interesting. I’ve only heard him call Strikeforce but he seems to be a good all around sports announcer and there aren’t enough black play by play guys, so good luck to him.

  80. packerzman says: Apr 17, 2011 12:17 PM

    Does Gus Johnson get “a little carried away” calling a first quarter 20 yard pass across the middle? Maybe. That being said there is NO other announcer..whether football , basketball , or otherwise..that i’d personally like to hear in the 4th quarter of a close game the games outcome is literally hinging on every play. If he was paired with Mike Mayock..who is extremely knowledgeable (and relatively calm) it would seem to be a perfect fit as that was all part of what made Madden and Summerall successful for years..one would calm the viewers down after a replay filled with BOOMS and BAMS and teleprompter circles.

  81. axespray says: Apr 18, 2011 8:47 AM

    I don’t understand all the hate on Gus Johnson, he’s like Football and Basketball’s version of WWF’s Jim Ross…. “BY Gawd Almighty! He is Broken in Half!”/ “Stone Cold! Stone Cold!”

    c’mon man, how do you NOT like Gus Johnson?
    He’s like the anti Joe Buck & Troy Aikmen….

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