Monday Night Football is getting a new producer

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Changes are coming to Monday Night Football. Big changes, potentially.

Andrew Marchand of the New York Post reports that long-time MNF producer Jay Rothman will not be returning in 2020. Per Marchand, ESPN made the decision to move on from Rothman in that role before the season.

The new producer may want his or her own on-air talent, which could spark a shake-up in the broadcast booth. Joe Tessitore and Booger McFarland handled the duties this year, a season after Tessitore and Jason Witten occupied the booth and McFarland patrolled the sidelines in a specialized vehicle that drew plenty of complaints for obstructing the viewpoint of paying customers.

Marchand reports that ESPN covets CBS game producer Jim Rikhoff, who is under contract there. The more likely outcome, per Marchand, entails ESPN promoting a game producer from its army of college football game producers.

It’s a challenging, high-profile job, especially in the age of instant criticism via social media. As Marchand notes, McFarland did himself no favors on Saturday, when he suggested that the Bills should run a draw play on third and 10 and then spike the ball to stop the clock. On fourth down.

Tony Romo of CBS becomes an intriguing candidate for the gig, given that he’s due to be a free agent after the season. That said, the bloom has seemingly faded a bit for Romo, who at times seems disinterested — or at least not as interested as he should be. (At one point this year, he suggested that the clock runs during the untimed down that comes after a touchdown.) Some have suggested that Romo could ditch broadcasting altogether, especially if he believes that his golf game would justify full-time immersion in a second sport.

Then there’s Peyton Manning. With little brother Eli likely moving on from football, Peyton wouldn’t have to worry about commenting on Eli’s performance.

Whatever the final configuration of the booth, ESPN may be looking for more cachet. And cachet doesn’t come for free; if ESPN goes big-name hunting, ESPN will have to be ready to pay big money.

50 responses to “Monday Night Football is getting a new producer

  1. Booger and Tes are miserable. Instead of trying to be innovative or sexy, how about just getting the best announcers? Kevin Harland would be awesome.

  2. MNF used to be the top broadcast and then under ESPN it became more like Open Mic night.

  3. Booger is the more palatable of the two on MNF. Everything that happens doesn’t require a Monday Night Raw-style scream, Joe. “AND NOW GRUDEN CALLS A TIMEOUT! WOW!” God. Lay off the coffee.

  4. “With ESPN hiring a new producer, that means that someone new will be producing Monday Night Football. Back to you, Tess.”

  5. I don’t know who they should have broadcasting, but his name isn’t Booger McFarland, that much I know for sure. Great football player, lousy commentator

  6. I personally loved the abject and shared disdain for one another that was theisman and kornheiser. Each hated the other and their was absolutely zero mutual respect shared. It’s hard to find that kind of chemistry. That was some funny tv.

  7. Since MNF requires pay TV I have not watched except for a few occasions at the bro in laws’ house. He usually mutes the sound so I can’t speak to whatt they say.

  8. Everyone hates Booger, but honestly I hate Tessitore more. He’s so over the top and is like screaming if somebody gets a first down. I remember one play Jason Witten caught a first down pass and Tess acted like the band was on the field. It’s hard to listen to.

  9. Knowing ESPN they will hire three people from TMZ that have never watched football to do the coverage. And they will talk about everything EXCEPT the football game being played.

  10. ESPN really butchered the show. As really need to get a play by play man who knows what he is doing. Booger seems to be a nice guy but needs an analyst that knows the game like Madden or Romo.

  11. He’ll have a lot of work to do, Monday Night Football has really fallen on hard times. Start by putting it back on ABC, their sister network.

  12. I congratulate you all on not posting “pick on Booger” or “picking Booger”.

    That takes a lot of restraint.

  13. unrelentingpursuit says:
    January 8, 2020 at 12:48 pm
    Everything about MNF is awful. Good step in the right direction.


    Exactly. It’s not like it’s a great product that just may need a tweek or two. MNF needs to be torn down and rebuilt from the ground up. The commentators and those god awful “half-time shows” need to go.

  14. doesn’t matter to me who they get…I usually mute the TV and try and syn’c up the local radio play by play….seriously, fans know more about their team the a couple of out of town hacks…who cares what they think…

  15. It’s espn (small case intentional), it’s gonna suck regardless of who they get. MNF has been going downhill sine Gifford, Cosell and Dandy Don left!

  16. I’m thinking Howard Cosell, Frank Gifford and Don Meredith would be the ideal team since MNF is also DOA.

  17. With all due respect to Tessitore and the Booger Man, need to get a couple of pros in the booth or at least try to emulate a Michaels-Collinsworth or Summerall-Madden dynamic. Don’t go with a three-headed monster, or, worse, tap a celebrity who has no business being in the there(I’m looking at you Limbaugh and Miller). Analyst should be accessible, but with meat on the bone (sorry Mr. Aikman, you’re not that guy). Play-by-play guy needs to properly hand the finished play to the analyst who says more than, “Wow, he looked like Walter Payton with that move.”

  18. This is step 1. Step 2 is getting rid of both Tessitore and McFarland. They are by far the worst duo in the history of MNF. I don’t think ESPN is concerned with spending money. Gruden was making a fortune. Hopefully we’ll be able to watch MNF with the sound on next fall.

  19. Howard,dandy Don, and Frank are all saying what took so long….hopefully they get that booger clown out so I can at least listen instead of watching with the sound muted….I have never read a positive comment about MNF since it moved to espn…please put it back like it was before…. including half time

  20. The bloom has faded a bit for Romo?? It’s not like the broadcaster bar is set very high, but clearly Romo would represent a huge upgrade to Booger, and not sure there’s another option as good as Romo- sign him and make MNF great again!

  21. Tessitore is really hard to listen to. He’s such a cheerleader and PR guy. I have to mute the volume. Where are guys like Enberg, Summerall, and Gifford anymore?

  22. the only thing worse than having to listen to booger talk is having to look at his crooked fingers during booth shots while he talks. ugh.

  23. skmad2014 says:
    January 8, 2020 at 12:54 pm

    Booger and Tes are miserable. Instead of trying to be innovative or sexy, how about just getting the best announcers? Kevin Harland would be awesome.


    You nailed it. I can’t for the life of me figure out why Harlan hasn’t landed a national #1 gig yet. Now who would pair up best with him?

  24. Go get Mike Tirico back as play by play, and Peyton Manning as your color commentary. That would make MNF great again.

  25. The only thing wrong with Booger is his name & the boss he works for. he’s very knowledgeable and expresses it well. A grown man named Booger is not happening.

    Perhaps they should bring back Dennis Miller and Rust Limp Paw as a team? They were so good. Too good for words.

  26. Get rid of you got Mossed. Also, get rid of Randy Moss. C-Wood was twice as good as that hack.

  27. The best move they can make is to can Booger McBooger. Even if you don’t replace him, that would be addition by subtraction!

  28. Booger McBooger is always right. His voice is worse than Troy Barkman’s, his insight is useless, and for all the football knowledge he might possess, it rarely is spoken to us like he’s doing anything than making it the ONLY knowledge we should listen too.

  29. I miss Summerall and Madden together. While each apart might not have been good, the chemistry between those two was amazing. Oh, how I long for the days when you didn’t need to hit mute on the tv. Troy Barkman is clueless – it is as if he never played football. Romo is clearly superior in what is going on and is not shoveling cowpie love when he covers them. Romo is so biased it drips through the screw holes of modern tvs.

  30. Look, with Allen at QB, spiking the ball on 4th down is not a worst-case-scenario and undoubteably saves plenty in field position.

  31. “…Romo could ditch broadcasting altogether, especially if he believes that his golf game would justify full-time immersion in a second sport.”

    Bad life choices: how do they work?

  32. ABC MNF used to be the best.
    Has not been since ESPN took over.
    Booger has go to go…

    Not sure who the team needs to be, but it has not been good for quite some time.

  33. qdog…… WTF are talking about ????……Booger knowledgeable???…… someone’s gotta make a play ???….the dude is an idiot & has zero clue what’s happening at all – plus he is a complete nightmare to listen to….. no sound or CC are the only opinions at this point when espn has the telecast

  34. Please get rid of BO knows and Tes and for goodness sake not Romo. Make Monday Night good again

  35. Booger McFarland and Joe Tessitore are the most irritating team to listen to of all the announcers; we have to mute the TV on MNF to watch a game. Ian Eagle and Dan Fouts are pretty difficult to listen to too on CBS (in particular Dan Fouts). Unfortunately, they seem to always be the announcing team when my team plays. I wish my team played on Sunday Night Football every week on NBC because Al Michaels and Cris Collinsworth are the best team by far. But that is not going to happen, and I wouldn’t want to be a season ticket holder if it did and have to get up at the crack of dawn the next day to go to work.

  36. I’d take Dennis Miller over Booger. I think ESPN and the NFL are playing mind games. Look at the Monday night schedule in the last few years. A majority of the games were bland or meaningless. ESPN is on the digital tier of most cable companies. The digital tier is used by 50%-60% of cable subscribers in most markets. Also, ESPN pays more for MNF than NBC pays for Sunday Night games. ESPN retaliates by hiring mundane booth sitters.

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