Fox Sports has unveiled its announcing teams for the upcoming NFL season.
The Fox crew features a few changes. Most notably, Erin Andrews will join Fox’s top NFL crew of Joe Buck, Troy Aikman and Pam Oliver for the annual Thanksgiving Day game in Dallas. Andrew, a long-time sideline reporter for ESPN who recently signed with Fox, also will work NFL games during the postseason.
Fox Sports also has hired two new game analysts, with former St. Louis Rams coach Mike Martz joining Ron Pitts. Former Miami and New England player Heath Evans will team with Sam Rosen.
Here’s the complete Fox release:
FOX SPORTS ANNOUNCES 2012 NFL BROADCAST TEAMS
Network Adds Mike Martz & Heath Evans as Game Analysts; Erin Andrews Contributes to Thanksgiving Day & Playoff Coverage Buck, Aikman and Oliver Return for 11th Season as Lead Broadcast Team FOX NFL SUNDAY Defends Position as America’s Most-Watched Pregame Show
Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif. — The NFL on FOX, the primary broadcast home of the NFC, today unveils its broadcast teams for its 19th straight season of coverage, and welcomes three new faces to its already deep roster. This year’s newcomers are former NFL head coach and Super Bowl-winning offensive coordinator Mike Martz, former NFL fullback Heath Evans who both serve as game analysts, and reporter Erin Andrews. The announcement was made today by FOX Sports Media Group President & Co-COO Eric Shanks from the network’s annual NFL on FOX broadcast seminar in Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif. The 2012 regular season kicks off on Sunday, Sept. 9 with doubleheader coverage of seven games preceded by FOX NFL SUNDAY, America’s No. 1 pregame show.
Martz, one of the most innovative play-callers in NFL history, is credited as the mastermind behind the Super Bowl XXXVI Champion St. Louis Rams’ “Greatest Show on Turf,” a record setting offense feared throughout the league. He later coached the Rams from 2000 to 2005, and most recently served as offensive coordinator for the Chicago Bears through the conclusion of last season. Martz is paired with play-by-play announcer Ron Pitts and debuts on Sunday, Sept. 9 when the Carolina Panthers take on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Evans, teamed with veteran play-by-play caller Sam Rosen, also makes his first NFL on FOX appearance Week 1 when the Seattle Seahawks battle the Arizona Cardinals. Drafted in the third round by Seahawks, Evans played fullback for Seattle from 2001 to 2004 before moving to the New England Patriots (2005-2008). Most notably, he served as fullback on the 2007 Patriots Super Bowl team that went undefeated in the regular season.
In addition to serving as host of FOX COLLEGE SATURDAY, CFB on FOX’s college football pregame show, Andrews is slated to work with the network’s top broadcast team, seven-time Emmy Award-winning play-by-play announcer Joe Buck, NFL Hall-of-Famer Troy Aikman and the top NFL sideline reporter and pregame contributor Pam Oliver for FOX’s Thanksgiving Day coverage and throughout the network’s NFC playoff coverage.
Following are the NFL on FOX announcer pairings for 2012:
Joe Buck, Troy Aikman & Pam Oliver
Kenny Albert, Daryl Johnston, Tony Siragusa
Thom Brennaman, Brian Billick & Laura Okmin
Dick Stockton, John Lynch & Jennifer Hale
Chris Myers, Tim Ryan & Jaime Maggio
Sam Rosen, Heath Evans
Ron Pitts, Mike Martz
“We are primed to give our football audience the most informative and entertaining NFL coverage possible, both visually and through our pregame and game broadcasters,” said Shanks. “We’re excited to add Mike Martz, Heath Evans and Erin Andrews to what we already consider to be the best NFL broadcast team on television.”
Buck, Aikman and Oliver return as the lead NFL on FOX lead broadcast team for the 11th consecutive season. This season marks Buck’s 19th with FOX Sports and Aikman’s 12th, while sideline reporter Oliver returns for her 18th campaign. The group calls its first regular season game from Green Bay on Sept. 9 as Aaron Rodgers and the Packers host Alex Smith and the San Francisco 49ers. The NFL on FOX’s second longest-running team features play-by-play announcer Kenny Albert, former Cowboys fullback Daryl Johnston and the NFL’s only on-field analyst, Tony Siragusa. Kenny, “Moose” and “Goose,” who begin their sixth season together Week 1 in New Orleans when Drew Brees and the Saints host rookie phenom Robert Griffin III and the Washington Redskins.
Former NFL Vice President of Officiating Mike Pereira returns as FOX Sports’ rules analyst to educate and inform viewers to the complexities of the NFL rule book. Pereira monitors the day’s action from a private control room at the FOX Network Center in Los Angeles. He is available to discuss controversial calls or explain rules interpretations with the studio broadcasters or game crews, either on- or off-camera. Pereira, through his @MikePereira handle, is also interacts extensively with fans throughout the day via Twitter.
Each week, the NFL on FOX broadcast day begins with FOX NFL SUNDAY (12:00 PM ET), America’s most-watched NFL pregame show since its inception in 1994. The one-hour prelude to the day’s action is the recipient of 21 Emmy Awards and stars co-hosts Terry Bradshaw and Curt Menefee, analysts Howie Long, Jimmy Johnson and Michael Strahan and the NFL’s premier insider Jay Glazer. Bradshaw and Long have been with the show since its debut in 1994 and Johnson marks his 13th season on the show. Glazer joined the program in 2004, Menefee in 2006 and Strahan followed in 2008 following his first Super Bowl win with the New York Giants.
In addition to Bradshaw and Long, Stockton, Pitts and Albert have the distinction of being the only members of the broadcast team to serve the network full-time for all of its 19 years of existence. Oliver, in her 18th season as previously mentioned, is second, followed by Rosen (17), Buck (15), Aikman and Johnston (12), Tim Ryan (11), Thom Brennaman (10), Glazer and Siragusa (9), Chris Myers (8), Brian Billick (5) and John Lynch (4).
The 2011-12 NFL on FOX season was the networks’ highest-rated in 16 years (12.5/29 in 1995) and averaged 20.1 million viewers, tying 2010 as FOX Sports’ most-watched NFL season ever. It was the third straight season that the NFL on FOX enjoyed ratings growth, FOX was the only full-season NFL carrier to post a ratings increase and FOX’s NFL ratings have grown +11% from 2008 to 2011 (10.5 vs. 12.0). AMERICA’S GAME OF THE WEEK, NFL on FOX national broadcasts on double-header Sundays, averaged a 15.1/28 with 17.3 million viewers last season, and ranked as the highest-rated and most-watched show on television in any daypart.