ESPN removes Jaworski from Monday Night booth

ESPN issued a press release on Wednesday entitled: “Ron Jaworski signs five-year extension for new, expanded multiplatform analyst role.”

They buried the lede.

Jaworski’s expanded role won’t include the job he’s most famous for: Monday Night Football. ESPN is moving to a two-man booth in 2012: Jon Gruden and Mike Tirico.

(As Jaws might say: “S—“)

Jaworski will be in the studio for ESPN’s many offerings, including Sunday NFL Countdown and Monday Night Countdown.

“I thank Ron for the great contributions he has made to Monday Night Football,” said ESPN President John Skipper. “With two strong analysts in Ron and Jon, these moves will better utilize their strengths and benefit our entire NFL presentation.”

It’s an interesting decision considering that Gruden could seemingly leave ESPN any year and Jaworski will continue to have a big role in the company. Perhaps the network has a replacement in mind (Trent Dilfer?) if Gruden leaves.

We’re headed for an inferior product. I enjoy Gruden in the booth a lot more than Florio, but it was still very valuable to have Jaworski’s X’s and O’s approach there to question Gruden. ESPN says this is not a demotion for Jaworski, but that’s a hard sell. It’s ESPN’s most valuable property and Jaws would surely have loved to remain a part of it. They are choosing to take him off.

This will mark the fourth booth lineup in seven seasons since ESPN took over Monday Night Football.

One thing we like about ESPN’s release: NFL Matchup will be back next year. That’s a relief. Jaworski is one of the best analysts around, so perhaps he’ll raise the level of discourse on the other pregame shows.

176 responses to “ESPN removes Jaworski from Monday Night booth

  1. Jaws is definitely the best analyst. But sometimes, I wish he would step out of the booth/studio and become either a Head Coach or GM. I’m inclined to think he would be really good at it, but I guess we’ll never know.

  2. The entire booth is awful. I have almost stopped watching MNF because of them. Between the announcers and the crappy games. Remember than MNF was good matchups?

    Tirico is constantly making rules mistakes and Gruden adds nothing.

    Bring back Mike Patrick.

  3. Typical stupid move by ESPN. Jaws was the only reason to watch MNF. Gruden is awful – worse than pathetic. He seems to think every routine play is some superhuman triumph. Tirico is a solid play-by-play man but can’t keep the discussion on the game.

  4. NFL Matchup is returning? YESSSS! By far the best show on that station. One of the few programs that will actually make me switch to ESPN. I can’t believe those morons took it away in the first place.

    With that being said, they removed the wrong analyst from the booth IMO.

  5. I already watch MNF on mute thanks to Gruden. This further demonstrates why the Sunday night game is becoming the real showpiece each week.

    “That’s just the shredder right there, Jaws.”

  6. I like Jaws but it seems like all he analyzes is the QB, which gets really old. One of the reasons I like Collinsworth is he talks about the OL/DL, which often teaches me something.

  7. For me, they removed the wrong analyst from the booth. I liked Gruden for one episode of MNF, and then I just realized he can never shut up. Personally, I’ll take Jaws over Gruden anyday. Especially on Monday nights!

  8. I enjoy what Gruden adds to the booth, but with only him and a play-by-play guy he is going to be way too much to listen to. Jaws was a much, much needed realist in there to keep Gruden and his man crushes under a certain threshold. This is going to be a mistake.

  9. Hell getting rid of Gruden would make the telecast more tolerable! He is the worst commentator on the air! He’s getting better; but he’s still very bad.

  10. Until they put a decent analyst who doesn’t spend all game slobbering over whoever is playing QB (no matter how bad), I’ll continue to pay very little attention to the announcers.
    Praise isn’t analysis. That’s something Jaws and Gruden have yet to learn.

  11. What I wouldn’t give for an hour long real x’s and o’s show. NFL matchup is good, but it glosses over a few games with just a couple quick points.

    Give me an in-depth x’s and o’s look at 2 games each week, for an hour long. I’d be in heaven. Put it on ESPN2, gotta be better than some of those hunting shows

  12. johnnycash19 says: Feb 15, 2012 12:24 PM

    “People still watch ESPN?”

    **************************

    How else do you watch Monday Night Football? It’s only televised on ESPN!

  13. Just another choice of flash over substance. Jaws was by no means my favorite analyst, but at least he said more than “THIS GUY, I love THIS GUY”.

  14. The only way this makes sense is if they intend to establish a new program for Jaws called “MNF II” with a new PBP announcer and have it go head to head with Gruden.

  15. One thing we like about ESPN’s release: NFL Matchup will be back next year. That’s a relief. Jaworski is one of the best analysts around, so perhaps he’ll raise the level of discourse on the other pregame shows.
    —————————————————-
    Great but I can’t for the life of me understand why it STILL comes on at like 3 in the friggin morning. On a totally random mothership note, Mike Greenburg makes my ears bleed.

  16. Good move. Never liked 3 in a booth, plus it just didn’t suit what Jaws is good at. Jaws is a great studio analyst, and Gruden is the new John Madden in the booth. Mike, and John will be a great team.

  17. Jaws is an excellent analyst. The problem with internet culture is that EVERYTHING sucks nowadays. These idiots wouldn’t be happy no matter who you put in there.

    And anyone who thinks doesn’t think that Brian Billick isn’t hands down the worst personality commentating football games needs to get their head examined.

  18. I’m not a big fan of the ESPN crew, but thought Jaws did a good job. I wish Chuckie would get a coaching job so we can get Tirico and John Madden!!!

  19. I really liked the insight that Ron Jaworski provided, but, his delivery was awful. He and John Gruden both made spectacles of average things and allowed their biases to show its nasty head too much. I think Jaworski would fit better just breaking down film or replacing Eric Mangenitals.

  20. Now i’d be much happier if this was about Gruden being let go…never seen one person like and love so much! Like it’s been stated earlier my TV spends a lot of time on MUTE as I find a lot of analyst just talk too much…bring back Dandy Don and Howard Cosell oh my bad they are both in the booth upstairs…

  21. And TIRICO is by far the most annoying broadcaster on TV; if not for the fact that he covers like SIX sports for ESPN. Annoying in them all. He acts like he knows sports better than the viewers and 80% of the time, most of us who actually played something other than QUIDDITCH (which was probably the only thing Tirico played), we know more than him.

    He’s a condescending, moralizing (the overreaction to Bynum’s foul on Barea, acting like it was akin to assassination attempts on the President) potato headed pipsqueak.

  22. I understand knocking gruden and jaworski, but I don’t get how people can get annoyed or bothered by tirico. 20 years ago he would have been average, but today he’s one of the best

  23. They have got to keep Jaws in that booth. I get so tired of hearing Gruden tell me that EVERY play and EVERY player is sooooo great. He never criticizes any player or team because he’s worried about getting back into coaching. Jaws is very analytical and very informative. He leans a bit more towards the QBs, but that’s his best attribute and what he knows best. Gruden’s act has grown old, just like Madden before him… Tirico knows almost nothing about football so you have to have someone who can break down a play, on the fly and give analysis as to why, who and how…Gruden can’t, Tirico can’t…Jaws can…

  24. In terms of analysis, Gruden < Tirico < people who know nothing about football < Jaws. Jaws wasn't the best in the world, but he was by far the best in that booth. This is gonna be Thiesman bad.

  25. I always thought ESPN made a mistake by not porting over their Sunday Night Football team to Monday nights when they got the rights to MNF. I loved the team of Mike Patrick, Joe Theismann, and Paul Maguire. Tirico is fine calling games, but no booth team has come close to those three guys since.

  26. Good lord, is MNF going to be completely insufferable next year.

    Gruden is going to be completely out of control without someone like Jaws to occasionally reign him in. Tirico sure as heck won’t do it.

    Every player will be the greatest to have ever played the game, every coach will be a genius, every team will be either truly great or on the verge of greatness. Every game will be the greatest ever played.

    And Gruden will be ever to show off his “expertise” to potential employers without having to worry about Jaws occasionally suggesting he might actually be wrong once in awhile.

  27. For those of you confused by the word “lede,” it is an actual word. Different from “lead,” a lede is the introduction to any article or blog post. Burying the lede refers to burying the most newsworthy piece of an article or blog post.

    FYI.

  28. ESPN better hope Gruden doesn’t take a HC job in 2013… lol. They’ll have no one left in the booth but “Little Napoleon”.

  29. Should have canned the other two and kept Jaws.
    If I hear Gruden use one more superlative to describe an average at best player ” this guy is probably one of the greatest at his position” . He does it ten times a game. Didn’t know their were that many great players playing at this time.

  30. Anyone who thinks Jaws is a good commentator (or better than Gruden) is either a loser Eagle fan, or just plain slow.

    That guy is a bigger blowhard than anyone in conjunction with the NFL. Corny, over emotional over his objective points, and favors the Eagles way way too much.

    I wish Gruden would’ve knocked him out.

  31. Also, can he be our newest Hall of Fame voter???

    Unlike the sportswriters, his head is not up his ass; he tells the truth via the game tape, he is a crapload more objective, and uses ON THE FIELD RELATED reasons to define the prestige of the athlete!!!!

    Trending on Twitter:
    #BantheWriters
    He, NFL Films producer and game film extraordinaire Greg Cosell, and Brian Baldinger need to be the HOF voters!!!! And they do it simulcast on TV!!!!
    Ban the Writers!!!! Ban the Writers!!!!! Ban the Writers!!!!

  32. Like Jaws …but he is a football guy and TV people hate that

    I think MNF will be Oprah, Whoopi Goldberg and Former president Bill Clinton next year

    ( He did nawwwwt fondel …uhh I me fumble that ball ) celebrity voice impersonated .

  33. I think it was a personality clash between Jaws and Gruden. Gruden outright insulted Jaws and questioned his intelligence almost every week and you could tell it was getting on Jaworski’s nerves. ESPN thinks Gruden makes them more money so they moved Jaworski. They all have their flaws but Gruden needs to learn when to shut up or at least offer criticism when it is deserved. None of the analysts have offered any intelligent explanations of the rules. They just said what they thought the call should be and they were wrong far too often.

  34. I wouldn’t be surprised if Gruden and Jaworski asked to be separated from working together. They sounded like they were ready to come to blows with each other multiple times every Monday. Then Mike Tirico would have the awkward job of trying to smooth over each situation. I still think they should dump all of them and start fresh, but at least MNF will have less tension in the booth now.

  35. One more thing!!!

    Note to editor: Nice “s—” reference!!! You’re not that entertaining, but that was good!!!!

  36. nbcintern1 says:
    Feb 15, 2012 12:59 PM
    For those of you confused by the word “lede,” it is an actual word. Different from “lead,” a lede is the introduction to any article or blog post. Burying the lede refers to burying the most newsworthy piece of an article or blog post.

    FYI.
    __________

    Thank you! I learned something new. Although it looks like “lead” is also correct, but “lede” is an alternative spelling to distinguish it from the molten lead used in typesetting machines.

  37. Jaworski is brutal. Assuming he does know what he’s talking about it, it’s completely diluted by the fact that he can’t speak, doesn’t think quickly on his feet in the booth and has no sense of humor whatsoever so listening to him is simply painful. Every time he opens his mouth I get that uncomfortable feeling like when you’re embarrassed for someone.

    Leave him in the studio and let him analyze film. He’s not sharp enough to react to what’s going on in the moment.

  38. I hear from an inside source that Jaworski wanted out of the booth, in order to spend more time with his man-crush Tom Brady. Pretty Boy is leaving Giselle and he and Jaws are going to get a little house by the sea together.

  39. @humbleminded85 says:Feb 15, 2012 12:39 PM

    On a totally random mothership note, Mike Greenburg makes my ears bleed.
    =================================
    Best post of the day!!!!

    He is extremely irritating.

  40. That guy, Jaws. He may have had the best year in the booth ever. I mean, he does it all. Insightful. Funny. Well spoken. Reminds me of a guy I used to have in Oakland. Jaws? I’d like three of him in my booth.

    John Gruden

  41. No qustion they let the wrong guy go.

    Gruden is just absolutely inuffereable.

    Some team hire him, PLEASE! Get him off the air!

    So long MNF with sound. I can handle Tirico, but he won’t tone down Gruden up like Jaws did.

  42. tirico is great. bspn just needs to add someone else to the booth that is worth a $hit.
    i don’t care for jaws. some of his comments are retarded at best. and i think everyone is fed up with gruden’s love affair of the moment. every guy he talks about is GREAT and a HOFer. got old in the 1st season.
    on a good note nfl matchup will be back

  43. I guess I’m in the minority. I like Jaws, but I think he is better in the studio breaking down film. Gruden is ok. I like Dilfer better than both of them. I think he would be excellent in the booth.

  44. Is it me, or is the Sunday Night product just better in every aspect? ESPN MNF is to NBC’s Football Night in America as the the Thursday night game is to both of them.

    Granted, flexing games is big for NBC, but still the whole squad for the MNF gig is almost lifeless.

  45. Tirico is the worst!!! Chuckie is entertaining and Jaws knows his stuff. Nothing they have done has ever come close to Frank Gifford or Howard Cosell speaking of sports. And of coarse good ol Dandy Don!

  46. Man, why all the hate on Dilfer? I think he is one of the few people at ESPN that actually bases their opinion on common sense and football intelligence instead of the ‘popular’ thing to say that every other uninformed analyst repeats over and over like they just made it up.

  47. Jaws must have put up quite the fuss about Gruden’s new deal.

    Maybe Jaws can go do the thursday night NFL network games instead. Those guys are horrible. Jaws would improve it 200%

    As for MNF, Gruden is to excitable and overpowering not to have someone like Jaws balancing him out.

    More to this story for sure.

  48. “People still watch ESPN?”

    What a stupid comment.

    I don’t care what channel MNF come on, I’m watching it.

    I don’t care if Oprah picks it up for her network and does the play by play herself, I’m watching it.

    Any opinion otherwise regarding what network shows what game and that somehow having an effect on weather or not you watch means you aren’t a real football fan, period.

  49. espn needs to get rid of that a** kissing mike tirrico . god dose he suck as a play by play analyst.

  50. And another thing….

    You people get to caught up in the guys in the booth. Just shut the hell up and enjoy the game. Quit acting like little girls at a Twilight marathon.

    Be a man. So tired of your incessant bitching

  51. Objectively speaking, JAWS is probably the best quarterback to ever serve in a major on-air analyst role. Dilfer, Salisbury (what ever happened to him?), , Simms, Esiason etc.

    It seems the mediocre QB’s have the most to say on air. I’ll miss JAWS on Mondee night. Much like I miss Howard, Frank, Dandy and all the good ole daze

  52. Gruden > Jaws (but not by much)

    Why all the love for Dilfer? He was quite possibly the worst QB to ever win a superbowl (maybe Brad johnson). I’ll admit he sounds okay but why can’t we have a legend be an analyst (like young when he was good which was a couple years ago). Finally no one and I repeat no one could be more stupid than Dierdorf!

  53. I had planned to add a pithy comment, but clearly my voice is not needed here.

    Now, if Gruden could just figure out the same thing!

  54. @deathmonkey41 says:Feb 15, 2012 1:13 PM

    ESPN won’t have any credibility with me until they take Chris Berman behind the barn and shoot him.
    ———————————————————-
    2nd best post of the day……more irritating than Greenburg……….

  55. With some of the horrendous games on MNF, the only two guys that would actually make me watch some of them would be a Jon Stewart and Bill O’Reilly booth. That may get me through at least one half of the Rams/Seahawks epic. In a world of NFL Redzone where you can basically watch everything at once, MNF has really lost its relevance. Maybe Chris Rock and Jerry Seinfeld could work as well. Short of that, who cares? Another blah ex-player over-analyzing a blah game with too many commercials.

  56. Okay, lets be fair here, jaws is not well spoken, gruden is kind of a joke, but if Trent Dilfer goes on MNF im done forever. There is nobody on this planet more self satisfied then Trent Dilfer.

  57. Please don’t mention Cossel with Merideth. You speak of one who knows football and one who knows practically nothing about anything, but creates the impression he knows all. (past tense, of course) If you don’t know which one is which, you never heard them together.

  58. Al Michaels and Mike Mayock would be perfect. Mayock has a great ability to explain the game to both the educated fan, and the casual fan.

  59. Please don’t put Dilfer in the booth ESPN. MNF had a terrible lineup of games this past year. We as fans can only hope that will change next season, without the overly critical jealous nature that Trent Dilfer brings to the table.

  60. Glad to hear that Jaws is gone from MNF. Three is a crowd for calling a game and Jaws never really had anything interesting to say.
    I’d like to see Mike Mayock take over for Gruden. He does a great job covering the draft and calling games for NFL Network on Thursday Nights.

  61. This post lost all credibility when I got to:

    “but it was still very valuable to have Jaworski’s X’s and O’s approach there to question Gruden”.

    Listening to Jaws’ “analysis” made me long for Dennis Miller. A terrible decision from Day 1.

  62. I know I am alone. But I liked Joe Theisman better then either Jawlsky or Gruden.
    NFL network right now has half a dozen guys that would be better in that booth then Jawalsky or Gruden. Including Theisman.
    The play by play guy, I like him.

  63. Gruden was hard to listen to with his refusal to be critical, not Tiki or Cris Carter level of d-baggery criticism, but honest criticism of players/coaches. Jaworski wasn’t afraid of that and called a spade a spade. His experience on the field brought a very good perspective on what players are thinking at certain stages of the game. Gruden has man-crushes on certain players, especially during the Favre years, which made me turn on the mute button.

  64. “This guy”
    “Outstanding”
    The only two phrases Gruden knows. Now he will be saying them TWO thousand times a game.

    I feel bad for those fans that use this for their drinking game…

  65. Jaws was awful no one cares they can all leave. MNF was a much better product when it was on ABC. We currently have the worst announcers in the history of sports except I will give props to Gus Johnson he is fantastic. I like Gus better as a football announcer tho. I miss him dearly on CBS since Im an AFC guy n Fox almost never uses him for the NFL which is a travesty.

  66. Huh, I’d forgotten all about MNF. Maybe if the game started before 8:45 and it wasn’t surrounded by the ESPN hype machine it would be worth while. Oh well.

  67. I don’t are who is commentating, watching a game on ESPN3 is still better than trying to watch a game from NFL Network on NFL.com.

  68. For those commenting about ESPN’s NFL Matchup; what do you think about ‘Playbook’ on NFL Network. They do an hour for AFC and another hour show for the NFC each week

  69. NFL Network covering a game is the worst. Their announcers are terrible.

    Looks like we’ll be getting more of that next year though with that much more Thursday night games.

  70. Gus Johnson is the best. Just because Dilfer
    studies film to me he is not an expert. what did he ever do in a game. someone better go check.
    worse qb ever. i want someone who knows something. and its not him.

  71. So ESPN’s Monday Night crew goes from bad to worse. Jaworski was the only guy worth listening to. Tirico is ho-hum at best. Gruden is absolutely the worst announcer out there; I can’t listen to the guy, and I always end up turning down the sound during the game. Will some team PULL-LLEASE hire this guy to get him OUT OF THE BOOTH. We certainly cannot depend on ESPN to do so.

    I don’t know what the people running ESPN are thinking. Next they’ll want to replace Jaworski with Joe Theisman.

  72. ESPN got rid of the wrong analyst.
    Everyone knows Gruden is just biding his time until the right coaching gig comes along.
    That is why he is loathe to criticize players because he may have to coach them one day.
    That to me is the height of intellectual dishonesty.

  73. Terrible news.

    How can anyone expect Gruden to handle color all by himself.

    He will be talking about a player who is “one of the best in the business” and it will be three plays ago.

    Jaws could do it. Gruden can’t. He is a rodeo clown.

  74. If they take out both Gruden and Jaws, they’d better get some New Orleans Voodoo priestess to dig up Cosell and Dandy Don because I’ve about had it with this network…

  75. Jaws was fun on MNF. He said “down the field” a lot. My friends and I made a drinking game out of it. Every time he said it, you had to pound a beer. Tuesday mornings at work were very rough sometimes. I think 11 times was the record.

  76. I know I’m piling on with this late post, but they fired the wrong analyst.

    Gruden is suck-ass who doesn’t know the meaning of the word “criticize” because he was too busy pimping for another head coach position.

    Dig the post above mine by @cincyhokie: Spot on

  77. johnnyhambone says:
    Feb 15, 2012 2:03 PM
    get rid of tirico and hire mr. electricity gus johnson as the play by play man

    ——

    I would agree but I have a theory that Gus is only good when the teams are awful. Like a Rams v Bucs matchup. It would sound out of place if he energized a Steelers v Ravens game.

    Though, with the quality of MNF games, you might be right.

  78. Meh, Every analyst/commentator has s**t that pisses people off. Jaws is just one that annoys me the most, He is completely incapable of looking at the Eagles objectively. He is very, very bias….. ESPN keeps a couple of these guys around for some reason( Merril Hoge)

    But He’s not my most hated broadcaster. That honor goes to Joe Buck, That POS doesn’t know wtf he is talking about. On top of that, he contradicts himself all the time based on who’s winning.

  79. Your not alone. Theisman was great at breaking things down and brought a certain class thats been missing for a longtime.

  80. At least I don’t have to listen to Al Micheals on MNF. It hasen’t been the same since Howard Cosell and Don Meredith. ……”turn out the lights, the party’s over…..”

  81. You guys are all pathetic. No matter who does color commentating, you don’t like. It doesn’t matter if it’s Jaws, Gruden, Collensworth, Aikman or whoever. For some reason you guys all think there’s some magical and mystical color commentator out there and you guys just haven’t heard them yet. You guys take one sentence you heard them say on a particular Sunday and you tell your yourself, “Thank you Mr. Obvious. You are a joke. Get off tv.” I just had to read through a list compiled by a website that listed the worst color commentators in football. It had every single color commentator on it!! There wasn’t even one left behind!! Where is the list that has the best color commentators? Oh wait, there isn’t a good one. I forgot. (Roll of the eyes). I’ve come to one conclusion. Football fans are full of a bunch of trolls. lol.

  82. Who really cares about this, with all the promotion and commercials, football on TV is a really tough listen. That’s why I listen to either home team radio or westwoodone. Radio analysts are able to expand their thoughts. That’s why a guy like Boomer Esiason is so much better on radio then he was on TV. Listening to the Super Bowl this year in my car was a delight. Even though I didn’t see the game the amount of info coming from the broadcast was outstanding. Every situation covered in detail. I may never listen to another TV broadcast again. I just wish they could sync the signals. It is so refreshing that Esiason can even call out Brady when need be. No fluff and real opinions unlike the TV dudes. Just my two cents.

  83. I can’t believe all the idiots who are saying negative things about Jaws. Anyone who is a true fan of the NFL recognizes that he is a great and knowledgable analyst. NFL Matchup is the best show for the true fan.

    As for MNF… well, they’ve been searching for a replacement for Gifford-Cosell-Meredith for about 30 years now. Another 20 or so firings and they might one day get it right.

  84. This is a relief. I always thought he over emphasized everything during the game (that he probably decided on before the game started)

    I still recall the 1st time he saw Flacco play on MNF. He wouldn’t stop gushing. It was embarrassing. He wouldn’t shut up. Rarely have I turned the volume down, I had to that day.

  85. espn has done nothing but screw up monday night football a little more evey year. the theme song even sounded different from the 1st game. give it back to abc. who ever woulda thought collinsworth would be the better one to watch. sunday blows them awy anyway

  86. Can’t we go back to Patrick, Theismann and Maguire on SNF on ESPN and Al, Frank & Dan on MNF on ABC like the good ol’ days?

  87. Lets face it. MNF never been the same since the Cosell, Meredith and Gifford era. All the others are just a yawn.

  88. Great news something else Jaws could not do add that to the very big list.
    Another Pilly player gets his wings cliped
    Back the the Polka for Jaws

    Now if Fox would get rid of mr baseball and the brain dead guy from dallas life would truly be great.

  89. I’m not sure there’s a solution for the MNF package unless you raid another network and get a better pairing.

    I’d get Joe Buck and Troy Aikman to do it. Not a huge fan of Buck, but they are very good.

  90. you can put whoever you like behind the mic, but with matchups like we saw last year it isnt going to make a bit of difference. that being said… please keep dilfer and that shiny empty dome of his away from the cameras as much as humanly possible.

  91. I don’t care what they do at ESPN anymore because I refuse to watch, or listen to idiots. I mean come on they let even Millen broadcast for them, and the man knew nothing about broadcasting, or football. Geeezzzz, he even built an 0-16 team and thought he was knowledgeable about football, and then ESPN must have thought so too, and gave him a job. Jawrorski is 10 times worse than Millen ever was.

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