Debut Of “Profootballtalk Live With Mike Florio” On NBC Sports Radio Featured Interview With NFL VP of Officiating Dean Blandino

nbc-sports-groupBlandino Discussed Controversial Fourth-Quarter Play in Lions-Cowboys NFC Wild Card Game

STAMFORD, Conn. – Jan. 5, 2015 – On today’s debut of ProFootballTalk Live with Mike Florio, a new three-hour football-focused program on NBC Sports Radio, Mike Florio interviewed Dean Blandino, NFL VP of Officiating, and discussed Sunday’s controversial fourth-quarter pass play involving Cowboys LB Anthony Hitchens and Lions TE Brandon Pettigrew.

Weekdays at Noon ET, the show features Florio’s critically-acclaimed NFL insight, all-encompassing coverage of the league with the most current news and analysis, and thought-provoking debate. Monday’s debut show also featured interviews with Denver Broncos executive vice president of football operations and Hall of Fame quarterback John Elway, Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press, Sam Farmer of the Los Angeles Times, and Tom Curran of CSN-New England.

Following is a transcript of Florio’s interview with Blandino:

Blandino (on fourth-quarter Hitchens-Pettigrew play): “When I look at the play, it’s a judgment call. I think it’s debatable. I think the defender is not playing the ball, that’s the first thing the official looks for. Then, you have to see significant contact that hinders the receiver’s ability to make the catch. There’s contact on the shoulder with the left hand, the back judge felt there was enough for pass interference. The head linesman came in, from his perspective felt it wasn’t enough, it was minimal contact – the side judge as well – and they decided to pick [the flag] up. I think it’s a judgment call. I think it’s close. I would have certainly supported the call had they left the flag down, but I do think it’s a very close judgment call that could have went either way.”

Florio: “What do we make of the shirt grab that you can see? It looks like that happened right before the ball was thrown. Anthony Hitchens, Cowboys linebacker, clearly grabs and tugs the shirt of Lions tight Brandon Pettigrew – should that have been holding, is that part of the interference?”

Blandino: “That’s holding. There’s no two ways about it. That’s a jersey grab. That’s a foul for holding that could’ve been called. A jersey grab like that, before the ball is thrown, is defensive holding.”

Florio: “You say ‘could’ve been,’ ‘could’ve been’ or ‘should’ve been’?

Blandino: “Well, it should’ve been, sure. Had somebody seen it, then they should have called it. It obviously wasn’t recognized on the field, but that’s defensive holding.”

Florio: “The administration of the penalty was, I would say, not ideal. What should have happened in that situation? You have Pete Morelli, the referee, declare that it was pass interference, while Fox was talking about it, for the people at home. Morelli said there was no foul on the play. What should have happened ideally in that situation?”

Blandino: “Ideally, I think mechanically it could have been handled much better. We don’t want to make an announcement that there’s a penalty, start to put the football down, then make another announcement that we’re picking up the flag. We want to get together, get all of the information before there is an initial announcement. Had that happened, it would have mitigated some of the response to this. The head linesman came in, he didn’t recognize that there was foul initially, he went over to the back judge as Pete was making the announcement – would have preferred Pete not to make the announcement that quick – and to wait, get together, talk about it and decide whether we were going to pick up the flag or not. That part of it, I think we could have handled better.”

Florio: “It seems like an art form in coming up with a right way to explain what happened. Every referee has their own style…What we got from Pete Morelli was initial call, pass interference, and then we got, there is no foul for pass interference – what should he have said?”

Blandino: “We want him to make a clear, concise, succinct announcement to why the flag was picked up – that there wasn’t enough contact for pass interference. Hopefully that will help explain it, clarify it, so we’d like the referee to give some kind of explanation. He did make an announcement, it was as Troy [Aikman] and Joe [Buck] were talking to viewers at home, so it didn’t come out very clear over the broadcast. We certainly wanted him to explain concisely why the flag was picked up.”

Florio: “One of the criticisms about this is we have an all-star [crew] of officials who haven’t worked together, so that makes it difficult to properly communicate. Rock, scissors, paper who’s right, who gets listened to – how much of a factor is that in this? Will this renew discussions of using different crews instead of putting guys together who haven’t worked together all year?”

Blandino: “I don’t think that was the factor that ultimately led to this situation happening. I think when you look at this crew makeup, you do have four officials that have worked together. Both the head linesman and the line judge were on the same crew all year, and the back judge and the umpire were on the same crew. Right now, we have an individual-based system, that’s been negotiated in the CBA with the referees’ union. They bargained for that, so we really can’t do anything until after the 2015 season. But I think there’s pros and cons to both. Most of these officials have worked together at some point during their career. I think our mechanics have been standardized. We standardized all of our mechanics over the last two years and put together a manual. It’s not like a team where they have a different game plan and different terminology. It’s standard across the board so officials can move seamlessly in and out of different crews. That happens during the year, as well as you have injuries and illnesses and conflicts in the schedule. So, I don’t think that was a major contributing factor. It’s something that we’ll obviously continue to look at after the 2015 season since there’s pros and cons to both crews and individual-based assignments.”

Florio: “After the flag was initially thrown, Dez Bryant, Cowboys wide receiver, runs out on to the field without a helmet on…he’s coming out to argue the call, no flag thrown – do you agree with that decision?”

Blandino: “I think we have to look at the rule. It’s not an automatic penalty. The helmet off – I think we have to take that away – because the helmet removal applies to a player who’s in the game and he takes his helmet off to confront an official or an opponent, or some kind of demonstration after a play. The officials have discretion there. They have discretion when a player comes off the bench and what he’s doing – is he confronting me, is he confronting an opponent? Certainly would have supported a call for unsportsmanlike conduct there had it been made, but in the judgment of the officials in the heat of the moment, they gave the sidelines some leeway. Again, it’s not an automatic penalty in that situation, but we certainly would have supported a call there.”

Florio: “There’s still some images floating around that seem to show offensive interference or some grabbing of the face mask by Brandon Pettigrew of Anthony Hitchens. Anything that you saw that would suggest the tight end did anything he shouldn’t have done?”

Blandino: “I didn’t see much. There is some contact with the mask. He didn’t grab it and pull and twist or turn the head. I thought that was minimal contact. I think if you take the hold out of this with the jersey grab – just take that out of the equation – I think it’s a tough judgment call. It’s debatable and could’ve gone either way. I didn’t think there was anything Pettigrew did that would have warranted a foul there.”

Florio: “The tinfoil hat crowd is out now because you were on the Cowboys’ party bus back in August, and that’s something that has come full circle. Dean’s presence on the Cowboys party bus means that the Cowboys win on a controversial call. How do you react when you hear that stuff?”

Blandino: “That’s something that it happened – one has nothing to do with the other. I understand why some people might look at that, and there’s a perception there, and obviously I’ve been through that and my personal growth and what I need to do. But it’s been something that has nothing to do with how the game was officiated. There were calls that go for or against the Cowboys all year. The was a replay review play earlier in the game that I’m a part of, that decision went in favor of the Lions. People can believe what they want to believe but one had nothing to do with the other.”

ProFootballTalk Live with Mike Florio also streams live on ProFootballTalk.NBCSports.com. On-demand replays of the program will be available on the NBC Sports Radio app, NBCSportsRadio.com and ProFootballTalk.NBCSports.com.

Florio, who created the innovative, NFL-focused football website ProFootballTalk.com, partnered with NBC Sports in July 2009. Since then, both PFT and NBCSports.com have seen tremendous growth in traffic, and Florio has expanded the PFT brand to include ProFootballTalk on NBCSN, the digital program PFT Live, and now the NBC Sports Radio program.

In addition to hosting Pro Football Talk on NBCSN, Florio is a regular contributor to NBC’s acclaimed Football Night in America, the most-watched studio show in sports, the Sunday Night Football postgame show on NBC, and the Sunday Sports Report on NBCSN.

For more information on programming, please contact Westwood One at [email protected].  For a complete schedule of shows, bios, exclusive audio content, and a list of radio stations airing NBC Sports Radio, log on to NBCSportsRadio.com.

Sidney Crosby & Penguins vs. Patrice Bergeron & Bruins On Wednesday Night Rivalry Highlight More Than 25 Hours Of Hockey Coverage On NBCSN This Week

NBCSN_LogoBruins Visit Penguins on Wednesday Night Rivalry at 8 p.m. ET on NBCSN; Coverage Begins with NHL Live at 7 p.m. ET

Ryan Getzlaf and Anaheim Ducks Host Henrik Lundqvist and New York Rangers in Wednesday Nightcap at 10:30 p.m. ET Following Bruins-Penguins

NBCSN’s NHL Coverage Begins with Sharks-Wild Tomorrow Night at 8 p.m. ET; Wild Visit Blackhawks Sunday Night at 8 p.m. ET

No. 3 Harvard vs. No. 19 Yale in “Rivalry On Ice” Saturday at 8 p.m. ET Highlight Three College Hockey Matchups on NBCSN This Weekend

***

NHL Live Studio Coverage To Originate From Downtown Phoenix During Super Bowl Week

STAMFORD, Conn. – Jan. 5, 2015 – NBCSN presents more than 25 hours of hockey coverage this week, including four NHL matchups and three college hockey games, highlighted by a doubleheader on Wednesday night featuring Sidney Crosby and the Pittsburgh Penguins against Patrice Bergeron and the Boston Bruins on Wednesday Night Rivalry at 8 p.m. ET. Coverage continues with a Wednesday nightcap at 10:30 p.m. ET, when Ryan Getzlaf and the NHL-leading Anaheim Ducks host Henrik Lundqvist and the New York Rangers.

This week’s NHL coverage begins tomorrow night at 8 p.m. ET on NBCSN, when Logan Couture and the San Jose Sharks visit Zach Parise and the Minnesota Wild. Coverage concludes on Sunday night at 8 p.m. ET, when Parise and the Wild travel to Chicago to face Patrick Kane and the Blackhawks.

NBCSN’s NHL pre-game coverage begins at 7 p.m. ET with NHL Live. Liam McHugh anchors Tuesday night’s coverage alongside Jeremy Roenick and Keith Jones, and hosts Wednesday night’s coverage with Mike Milbury, Roenick, Jones and NHL insider Bob McKenzie.

NBCSN continues its 2014-15 college hockey coverage with three games this week, highlighted by the “Rivalry On Ice” between the No. 3 Harvard Crimson and the No. 19 Yale Bulldogs from Madison Square Garden on Saturday night at 8 p.m. ET. Coverage begins Friday at 7:30 p.m. ET with the New Hampshire Wildcats hosting the Dartmouth Big Green, and continues Saturday at 6 p.m. ET with the Western Michigan Broncos against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish.

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

NHL LIVE AT THE SUPER BOWL

NHL Live, NBC Sports Group’s pre- and post-game studio show, will originate from downtown Phoenix during Super Bowl week. Beginning on Tuesday, Jan. 27 the program will be located at “Super Bowl Central,” NBC Sports Group’s primary home for studio programing during Super Bowl week, located in downtown Phoenix.

Hosts Liam McHugh and Kathryn Tappen will anchor NBCSN’s NHL Live coverage throughout the week, alongside former players and analysts Mike Milbury, Keith Jones and Jeremy Roenick.

NBCSN will feature six NHL telecasts during the week prior to Super Bowl XLIX, including the Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Washington Capitals on Wednesday Night Rivalry on Jan. 28. The week will also feature rematches of the 2014 Stanley Cup Conference Finals, when the Los Angeles Kings host the Chicago Blackhawks on Jan. 28 at 10:30 p.m. ET, and the New York Rangers host the Montreal Canadiens on Thursday, Jan. 29 at 7 p.m. ET. On Super Bowl Sunday, the St. Louis Blues and Washington Capitals meet at 1 p.m. ET on NBCSN.

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

BRUINS-PENGUINS ON WEDNESDAY NIGHT RIVALRY8 P.M. ET ON NBCSN

Wednesday Night Rivalry rings in the new year with a matchup between the Bruins and Penguins at 8 p.m. ET. The Bruins have earned points in nine of their last 11 games (4-2-5), but have dropped their past three games via overtime or shootout. The Penguins are currently tied with the New York Islanders with 53 points for the top spot in the Metropolitan Division. Crosby currently ranks second in the NHL in assists (32), while Evgeni Malkin is now tied for fourth overall with 43 points. Penguins goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury leads all goaltenders with six shutouts.

Emmy Award-winning play-by-play commentator and Sports Illustrated 2014 Media Person of the Year Mike ‘Doc’ Emrick, analyst Eddie Olczyk and Emmy Award-winning ‘Inside-the-Glass’ analyst Pierre McGuire will have the call from CONSOL Energy Center in Pittsburgh, Pa.

RANGERS-DUCKS – WEDNESDAY AT 10:30 P.M. ET ON NBCSN

The Rangers enter their Wednesday nightcap against the NHL-leading Ducks as one of the hottest teams in the NHL, boasting a 10-1-0 record in their last 11 games. Lundqvist and the Rangers have held their opponents to three goals or less in all 11 contests, including a 6-1 win over Buffalo on Saturday. Anaheim leads the NHL with a 26-9-6 record, and defeated Nashville 4-3 in a shootout on Sunday.

Dave Strader (play-by-play) and Brian Engblom (Inside-The-Glass analyst) will have the call from the Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif.

SHARKS-WILD – TOMORROW AT 8 P.M. ET ON NBCSN

The Sharks and Wild meet tomorrow night for the third time this season, having split the first two games of their season series. Parise and the Wild defeated the Sharks 4-3 in a shootout on Oct. 30 in Minnesota, followed by a 2-1 Sharks victory in San Jose on Dec. 11. The Sharks face Winnipeg on Monday night, while the Wild look to rebound from a 7-1 loss on Saturday night to Dallas.

Gord Miller (play-by-play) and Pierre McGuire (Inside-the-Glass analyst) will have the call from Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, Minn.

WILD-BLACKHAWKS – SUNDAY AT 8 P.M. ET ON NBCSN

Patrick Kane and the Blackhawks host the Wild on Sunday night at 8 p.m. ET, entering the week after a 5-4 overtime victory over the Dallas Stars last night on NBCSN. Chicago is currently tied with Nashville for the top record in the Central Division, and boasts a 17-4-1 record since Nov. 16. The Wild and Blackhawks will face off on Thursday night in Minnesota prior to their matchup on Sunday night on NBCSN.

Mike ‘Doc’ Emrick (play-by-play) and Pierre McGuire (Inside-the-Glass analyst) will call the action from United Center in Chicago, Ill.

NO. 3 HARVARD -NO. 19 YALE – RIVALRY ON ICE – SATURDAY AT 8 P.M. ET ON NBCSN

NBCSN presents the second iteration of the “Rivalry On Ice” this Saturday night, when the No. 3 Harvard Crimson face the No. 19 Yale Bulldogs at Madison Square Garden in New York. Harvard enters the game with just one loss this season (10-1-2), but it came at the hands of ECAC rival Yale in a 2-1 defeat at home on Nov. 15. The Crimson have not allowed more than three goals in any game this season. Yale (8-3-2) has won six of its last seven games, including a 3-1 win over then-No. 10 Vermont on Jan. 3.

Dave Strader (play-by-play) and Pierre McGuire (Inside-the-Glass analyst) will have the call from Madison Square Garden.

DARTMOUTH-NEW HAMPSHIRE – FRIDAY AT 7:30 P.M. ET ON NBCSN

The Dartmouth Big Green visit the New Hampshire Wildcats in an interconference matchup on Friday night on NBCSN. The Big Green (ECAC) enter action following a 3-2 loss to Boston College on Jan. 3, while the Wildcats (Hockey East) look to build off a 6-2 win over then-No. 12 Nebraska-Omaha on Dec. 31.

Dave Goucher (play-by-play) and AJ Mleczko (analyst) will call the game from the Whittemore Center in Durham, N.H.

WESTERN MICHIGAN-NOTRE DAME – SATURDAY AT 6 P.M. ET

The Notre Dame Fighting Irish host the Western Michigan Broncos on Saturday night on NBCSN. The Fighting Irish (Hockey East) split a pair of games in the Florida College Hockey Classic, including a win over No. 6 Miami (OH) on Dec. 28. Western Michigan (NCHC) looks to carry momentum from a 4-1 win against Penn State on Dec. 30.

Steve Schlanger (play-by-play) and Anson Carter (analyst) will call the game from the Compton Family Ice Arena in Notre Dame, Ind.

Note: Games are subject to local blackouts.

Date Coverage Network Time (ET)
Tues., January 6 NHL Live NBCSN 7 p.m.
San Jose at Minnesota NBCSN 8 p.m.
NHL Top 10 (Encore) NBCSN 11 p.m.
NHL Top 10 (Encore) NBCSN 11:30 p.m.
Wed., January 7 NHL Top 10 (Encore) NBCSN 6:30 p.m.
NHL Live NBCSN 7 p.m.
Wednesday Night Rivalry – Boston at Pittsburgh NBCSN 8 p.m.
Wednesday Nightcap – N.Y. Rangers at Anaheim NBCSN 10:30 p.m.
Fri., January 9 NHL Top 10 (Encore) NBCSN 7 p.m.
Dartmouth at New Hampshire NBCSN 7:30 p.m.
Sat., January 10 Western Michigan at Notre Dame NBCSN 6 p.m.
Rivalry On Ice – No. 3 Harvard vs. No. 19 Yale NBCSN 8 p.m.
Sun., January 11 NHL Live NBCSN 7 p.m.
Minnesota at Chicago NBCSN 8 p.m.

2014-15 REGULAR SEASON COVERAGE ON NBC & NBCSN

NBC Sports Group will deliver coverage of 103 NHL regular-season games during the 2014-15 season, featuring 14 games on NBC and 89 games on NBCSN. All games will be streamed live via NBC Sports Live Extra. Click here for more information on NBC Sports Group’s comprehensive NHL coverage this season.

NBC SPORTS REGIONAL NETWORKS

NBC Sports Regional Networks, which serve top NHL markets such as Boston (Bruins), Philadelphia (Flyers), Washington D.C. (Capitals), Chicago (Blackhawks) and the Bay Area (Sharks), will air more than 300 live NHL games and surround the 2014-15 NHL season with in-depth news, analysis and original programming on the teams that matter most.

-NBC SPORTS GROUP-

Notes & Quotes From Wild Card Edition Of NBC’S “Football Night In America”

FNIA-nfl-nbc“You’ve got to keep your poise. One penalty can end your season.” – Tony Dungy on managing emotion during intensity of Ravens-Steelers

“During ‘Ravens Week,’ the weight room is packed. Everybody’s in the weight room, including our kickers and long snapper.” – Hines Ward on the Steelers preparation for the Ravens

“If I’m the Patriots, this is the team I don’t want to see.” – Harrison on the Ravens

STAMFORD, Conn. – January 3, 2015 – Following are highlights from the Wild Card edition of NBC’s Football Night in America. Bob Costas opened the show live from Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pa., to preview Ravens-Steelers. Costas was joined on site by Sunday Night Football sideline reporter Michele Tafoya and NBC NFL analyst Hines Ward, who won two Super Bowls with the Steelers.

Dan Patrick co-hosted Football Night from NBC Sports Group’s Studio 1. He was joined by Super Bowl-winning head coach Tony Dungy; two-time Super Bowl winner Rodney Harrison, and Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk on NBCSports.com.

Costas interviewed Ravens head coach John Harbaugh and Ward spoke with Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin.

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

MIKE FLORIO LAUNCHES NBC SPORTS RADIO PROGRAM THIS MONDAY

ProFootballTalk Live with Mike Florio, a new three-hour football-focused radio program featuring Mike Florio the creator of ProFootballTalk on NBCSports.com and co-host of Pro Football Talk on NBCSN — premieres this Monday, Jan. 5, at Noon ET, on NBC Sports Radio, the NBC Sports Radio app and NBCSportsRadio.com. The show will feature Florio’s critically-acclaimed NFL insight, all-encompassing coverage of the league with the most current news and analysis, and thought-provoking debate.

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

Following are highlights from Football Night in America:

ON INTENSITY OF RAVENS-STEELERS

Dungy: “You have to play on edge…you’ve got to be aggressive, but you can’t be crazy. You’ve got to keep your poise. One penalty can end your season.”

Harrison: “You have to control your emotions…You have to play within yourself.”

Ward: “Between these two teams, they hate each other…During ‘Ravens Week,’ the weight room is packed. Everybody’s in the weight room, including our kickers and long snapper, because you knew it was going to be a physical game when you played each other.”

Costas: “When the PR staffs and the owner are pumping iron, you know it’s serious.”

Harrison on Ravens: “If I’m the Patriots, this is the team I don’t want to see.”

Harrison on Steelers against the Ravens depleted secondary: “With that secondary, pass the ball 40 or 50 times.”

ON WEATHER AND FIELD CONDITIONS IN PITTSBURGH

Harrison: “It’s an advantage to the defensive players…(offensive players are) so worried about the field, they don’t worry about the defense.”

Dungy: “It can definitely get in your head.”

ON DECISION TO START STEELERS S TROY POLAMALU

Harrison: “I love Troy. He’s not the same player that he used to be, but in a playoff situation I’m taking the experience of Troy Polamalu over the fresh legs of the younger player.”

Dungy: “Knowing Mike Tomlin the way I know him, it was an easy call for Mike, because you play on that emotion. You need all of that for this rivalry game. No question on why he put Troy in there.”

ON PANTHERS (who beat Cardinals 27-16 in this afternoon’s NFC Wild Card game)

Dungy: “Once they got up by two scores, just run the clock, get off the field, and don’t get guys hurt. But they won the game, and they’re playing hot football…This is not a bad football team.”

Harrison: “It’s a good win but you have to keep everything in perspective. They’re playing against a third-string quarterback who looked scared to death back there…I think they’re in trouble.”

Dungy on if the Panthers play the Seahawks: “They have the formula to play Seattle tough.”

ON COACHING AND FRONT OFFICE MOVES, AND NFL DRAFT

Florio on Rex Ryan: “One place he’s not heading is Chicago. I’m told the Bears have no interest in Rex Ryan as a head coaching candidate…The Raiders have some interest in Rex Ryan, they’ve yet to request an interview. The Falcons have considerably more interest.”

Florio on Falcons GM Thomas Dimitroff: “The Falcons still have a general manager in Thomas Dimitroff, but I’m told that that still could change if the next head coach wants to bring in his own personnel specialist into the organization. That could mean Dimitroff would be out on a delayed basis.”

Dungy on Chip Kelly attempting to trade up to draft Marcus Mariota: “I could see Chip doing it.”

Harrison on the prospect of the Bucs trading out of the No. 1 pick: “Lovie Smith would absolutely be crazy if he were to trade and give up that young kid.”

Below are excerpts from Costas’ interview with Harbaugh and Ward’s interview with Tomlin.

JOHN HARBAUGH WITH BOB COSTAS

Harbaugh on if familiarity between Ravens and Steelers breeds respect or contempt: “Respect, absolutely. We love playing them. It’s a great rivalry, and we’re honored to be a part of it.”

Harbaugh on his relationship with Tomlin: “We have a little fun together. We go to the owners meetings and laugh a little bit, but in the end we do want the same thing. We want the AFC North championship, and congratulations to (the Steelers) since they won this year – but we want to win.”

Harbaugh on potential cold weather conditions on Saturday night: “We’re built for it in our division. Everybody brings in quarterbacks that can play in this kind of weather. We told our team it’s going to be dark in the stadium. That’s figurative and literal. It’s going to be rainy, cold and muddy – just the way it should be.”

Harbaugh on a potential rematch of the 2013 AFC Championship Game with the New England Patriots next weekend: “We’ve got plans on this week’s game. We’ve got ambitions for winning in Pittsburgh. That’s our goal right now.”

MIKE TOMLIN WITH HINES WARD

Tomlin on the Ravens-Steelers rivalry: “It’s tough…The organizations are so like-minded in that we are singularly focused. That’s a recipe for fireworks. But I think largely that it’s guys like you (Hines Ward), guys like Ray (Lewis), that not only played the game in a special way, but instill that passion in the guys that they play with that still persists to this day.”

Ward: “In the 2008 AFC Championship game, you said you wanted me to set the tone for the game. What player sets the tone for you guys?”

Tomlin: “It’s done in a different way, but it’s ‘84’ (Antonio Brown) – because you trained him. He’s a competitor. He’s a very similar competitor to you, but his skill set is different. But it inspires us nonetheless in a very similar way.”

Tomlin on who he fears most on Ravens roster: “I love (Terrell) Suggs. He’s a guy for all situations. He does it all. He rushes the passer, stops the run, and plays on the perimeter screen game. You get in the no-huddle, and he knows your verbiage at the line of scrimmage.”

Ward: “And he still doesn’t like me (laughing).”

Tomlin: “I wouldn’t like you if I were him either (laughing). He’s the type of guy that if he’s on your team, you love him. If he’s not on your team, not so much. But I’ve been around long enough to just appreciate that element of him.”

Ward: “There’s a genuine dislike in this rivalry between the players. Is it the same for the head coaches?”

Tomlin: “Sure (laughing).”

Ward: “Do you hate Coach (John) Harbaugh (laughing)?”

Tomlin: “Not personally, but professionally, he wants the same things that I want. He appears to be similarly committed to it as I am, so we’re going to have problems. He’s a good guy, but when we step into the stadium, we’ve got business, and that business is not the same.”

FOOTBALL NIGHT IN AMERICA

NBC’s NFL Wild Card Saturday Coverage Features Ben Roethlisberger and Steelers vs. Joe Flacco and Ravens in Primetime

FNIA-nfl-nbcSaturday’s Coverage Begins with Football Night In America at 7:30 p.m. ET on NBC

NBC Sports Live Extra to Live Stream Ravens-Steelers

mun2 To Air Ravens-Steelers Wild Card Playoff Game To Spanish-Language Homes Across America

NBC To Present AFC Divisional Game At New England On Saturday, Jan. 10 At 4:30 P.M. ET

America’s Future Football Stars Featured During 15th Annual U.S. Army All-American Bowl Saturday, Jan. 3 at 1 p.m. ET on NBC

NFL Turning Point – Tomorrow Night at 11 p.m. ET on NBCSN

Pro Football Talk – Weekdays at 5:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN

NBCSN Sunday Sports Report Has Comprehensive Post-Game Coverage Sunday Nights at 11:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN

STAMFORD, Conn. – Dec. 30, 2014 – NBC kicks off its coverage of the 2014 NFL playoffs this Saturday night in primetime with a Wild Card matchup between bitter division rivals, when Ben Roethlisberger and the AFC North champion Pittsburgh Steelers host Joe Flacco and the Baltimore Ravens at 8 p.m. ET. NBC’s NFL Wild Card coverage on Saturday begins at 7:30 p.m. ET with a special edition of Football Night In America.

The Steelers earned the AFC North title and the No. 3 seed with a 27-17 win over the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday Night Football last weekend, led by Roethlisberger’s 317 passing yards and two touchdowns. The Ravens reached the playoffs for the sixth time in seven years with a 20-10 win over the Cleveland Browns, coupled with San Diego’s loss in Kansas City, as Flacco led a fourth-quarter comeback by completing 8-of-9 passes for 161 yards and two touchdowns in the final stanza.

Saturday’s primetime matchup between the Ravens and Steelers marks the third time these division rivals will square off in the postseason, with all three taking place in Pittsburgh, and their third meeting this season. The Steelers defeated the Ravens 23-14 in the 2008 AFC Championship Game en route to their victory in Super Bowl XLIII, and earned a 31-24 win over Baltimore in the 2010 Divisional Round.

This season, the Ravens defeated the Steelers 26-6 in Week 2 in Baltimore, holding Pittsburgh without a touchdown for the first time since the 2011 season. In Week 9, Roethlisberger threw six touchdown passes for the second consecutive game in a 43-23 win on Sunday Night Football.

Calling Ravens-Steelers is seven-time Emmy Award-winner Al Michaels (play-by-play), in his 29th season as the voice of the NFL’s premier primetime package; 15-time Emmy Award-winner Cris Collinsworth, who has won the Emmy for Outstanding Event Analyst in each of his five seasons in the Sunday Night Football booth; and two-time Emmy Award-winning sideline reporter Michele Tafoya.

NBC’s coverage of Sunday Night Football is led by Emmy Award-winning producer Fred Gaudelli and Emmy Award-winning director Drew EsocoffSunday Night Football has won the Emmy Award for Outstanding Live Sports Series for a record six consecutive years.

Football Night in America, the most-watched studio show in sports, is hosted by 26-time Emmy Award-winner Bob Costas, who will report from Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pa., on Sunday. Costas will be joined on site by Collinsworth, Tafoya, and former Steelers receiver and two-time Super Bowl winner Hines Ward.

Dan Patrick co-hosts Football Night from NBC Sports Group’s Studio 1 and will be joined by Super Bowl-winning head coach Tony Dungy, two-time Super Bowl winner Rodney Harrison, Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk on NBCSN and NBCSports.com.

MIKE FLORIO AND TONY DUNGY PREVIEW RAVENS-STEELERS

Dungy on Steelers ability to adapt offensively if RB Le’Veon Bell does not play: “They can certainly do it. Ben Roethlisberger has been hot this year and has thrown for almost 5,000 yards. They have a ton of great receivers and can spread the ball around. But if they’re without Bell, that really plays into the Ravens’ hands. They don’t have great pass defenders in the secondary, but they have great pass rushers.”

mun2 TO AIR RAVENS-STEELERS WILD CARD PLAYOFF GAME TO SPANISH-LANGUAGE HOMES ACROSS AMERICA

NBCUniversal’s Hispanic cable network mun2 continues to bring NFL football to the homes of Latinos across the U.S., with the exclusive Spanish-language broadcast of Ravens-Steelers Wild Card game.

La NFL en mun2 pre-game show will begin live from Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pa. at 8 p.m. ET. Bringing viewers all the action on the field throughout this AFC Wild Card Playoff will be play-by-play announcer Rene Giraldo, along with color commentator Edgar Lopez and sideline reporter Veronica Contreras.

NBC TO PRESENT AFC DIVISIONAL GAME AT NEW ENGLAND ON SATURDAY, JAN. 10 AT 4:30 P.M. ET

In addition to this weekend’s Ravens-Steelers matchup, NBC will present the AFC Divisional playoff game, hosted by the AFC’s top seed New England Patriots on Saturday, Jan. 10 at 4:30 p.m. ET. Coverage will begin at 3:30 p.m. ET with an hour-long edition of Football Night In America.

Click here for more information: http://nbcsportsgrouppressbox.com/2014/12/28/nbc-to-televise-steelers-afc-wild-card-game-this-sat-jan-3-in-primetime-afc-divisional-at-new-england-on-sat-jan-10-at-430-pm-et/

AMERICA’S FUTURE FOOTBALL STARS FEATURED DURING 15th ANNUAL U.S. ARMY ALL-AMERICAN BOWL THIS SAT., JAN. 3 AT 1 P.M. ET ON NBC

NBC will air the 15th annual U.S. Army All-American Bowl, the nation’s premier high school football all-star game, this Saturday, Jan. 3 at 1 p.m. ET live from the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas. Among U.S. Army All-American game alumni are NFL stars including Colts QB Andrew Luck, Chiefs RB Jamaal Charles, Cowboys RB DeMarco Murray, and Giants rookie WR Odell Beckham Jr.

Coverage on Saturday kicks off at 12:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN with a live, on-site pre-game show, followed by live game coverage at 1 p.m. ET on NBC.

Click here for more information: http://nbcsportsgrouppressbox.com/2014/12/30/americas-future-football-stars-featured-during-15th-annual-u-s-army-all-american-bowl-this-sat-jan-3-at-1-p-m-et-on-nbc/

NBC SPORTS LIVE EXTRA

As with all Sunday Night Football games this season, NBC Sports Live Extra, NBC Sports Group’s live streaming product, will stream this Saturday’s Ravens-Steelers game to desktops and tablets. The full HD-quality video stream will come directly from NBC’s broadcast. For desktops, NBC Sports Live Extra can be accessed at NBCSports.com/liveextra. The NBC Sports Live Extra app is available at the App Store for iPad and iPod touch, and on select tablet devices within Google Play.

DIGITAL & SOCIAL COVERAGE

NBC Sports Group is utilizing its wide array of digital and social assets to provide fans with more behind-the-scenes content than ever before. NBC Sports Group’s NFL coverage this weekend will include continued comprehensive coverage via NBC Sports Group’s social media channels.

Click here for more info on NBC Sports Group’s season-long comprehensive NFL social media coverage: http://nbcsportsgrouppressbox.com/2014/08/28/nbc-sports-group-surrounds-week-1-of-2014-nfl-season-with-nfl-kickoff-2014-and-sunday-night-football/

SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL BUS

NBC Sports Group’s Sunday Night Football bus returns this season to travel the country visiting the host cities of all 17 Sunday Night Football games and postseason games, including Super Bowl XLIX. The bus arrives in each city two to three days prior to the game and stops at local landmarks and events, where fans have the opportunity to interact with America’s most-watched primetime television show via exclusive memorabilia, and an interactive 55-inch touch screen housing social media elements, photos and video. Fans can digitally follow the Sunday Night Football bus at NBCSports.com/FollowSNF.

NFL TURNING POINT – TOMORROW NIGHT AT 11 P.M. ET ON NBCSN

Wednesday night’s edition of NFL Turning Point, NBCSN’s Emmy Award-nominated weekly NFL show co-produced by NFL Films, will feature in-depth analysis of Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers division-clinching win over the NFC North division rival Detroit Lions. Airing tomorrow night at 11 p.m. ETNFL Turning Point will break down the game and review how Rodgers led the Packers to victory despite being injured.

In addition, the all new episode will examine the Ravens matchup with the Browns, the Panthers NFC South-clinching win against the Falcons, and wired-for-sound segments with Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll and Chiefs LB Justin Houston, who recorded 4.0 sacks on Sunday giving him 22.0 for the season.

Hosted by Football Night In America’s Dan Patrick, the hour-long program will air throughout the entire NFL season, including the playoffs and Super Bowl XLIX.

Click here for more info: http://nbcsportsgrouppressbox.com/2014/12/30/packers-victory-over-lions-featured-in-new-episode-of-nfl-turning-point-tomorrow-night-at-11-p-m-et-on-nbcsn/

PRO FOOTBALL TALK ON NBCSN WEEKNIGHTS, 5:30 P.M. ET

Pro Football Talk, NBCSN’s daily NFL studio show co-hosted by Mike Florio and Paul Burmeister, airs at 5:30 p.m. ET Monday through Friday (only Monday and Tuesday this week). Pro Football Talk provides all-encompassing coverage of the NFL, and features a roster of NBC Sports football commentators who share a combined eight Super Bowl titles and 169 seasons of NFL experience, including Cris Collinsworth (Thursdays), Tony Dungy (Tuesdays), Hines Ward (Wednesdays), Doug Flutie (Fridays), Jason Taylor, Takeo Spikes, Brian Westbrook, Ross Tucker, Jon Ritchie, NFL coach Kevin Gilbride, and longtime NFL athletic trainer Mike Ryan.

NBC SPORTS SUPER BOWL FAN CHALLENGE

NBC Sports will send two lucky fans to Super Bowl XLIX in Glendale, Ariz., with the NBC Sports Super Bowl Fan Challenge, as part of its multi-platform promotion leading up to the game on Sunday, Feb. 1, on NBC.

Through Jan. 6, 2015, fans can visit the NBC Sports Super Bowl Fan Challenge and complete weekly challenges for a chance to win the grand prize – VIP access and two (2) tickets to Super Bowl XLIX, as well as hotel and airfare accommodations.

Click here for more info: http://nbcsportsgrouppressbox.com/2014/12/17/two-lucky-fans-will-win-trip-to-super-bowl-xlix-by-entering-nbc-sports-super-bowl-fan-challenge/

NBCSN SUNDAY SPORTS REPORT SUNDAY NIGHTS, 11:30 P.M. ET

NBCSN Sunday Sports Report, a new, weekly, one-hour program that showcases the news and highlights of the sports properties that are carried by NBC Sports Group, airs every Sunday night at 11:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN.

Hosted by Liam McHugh, NBCSN Sunday Sports Report goes in-depth into the high-profile sports properties that primarily air on NBC and NBCSN, including the Olympics, NFL, NASCAR, NHL, Premier League, golf, Triple Crown horse racing, Notre Dame Football, Formula One, IndyCar and more.

Click here for more info: http://nbcsportsgrouppressbox.com/2014/07/14/nbcsn-sunday-sports-report-premieres-august-17/

NBC SPORTS RADIO

NBC Sports Radio will surround the 2014 NFL season with daily coverage on 439 radio affiliates, highlighted by McNabb and Malone; an all-sports show that leverages the unique perspective of two former NFL quarterbacks, and Safety Blitz with Rodney Harrison; featuring three-time All Pro and two-time Super Bowl-winner Rodney Harrison.

To listen to a live stream of NBC Sports Radio, or find your local affiliate, visit www.NBCSportsRadio.com

NBC SPORTS REGIONAL NETWORKS

NBC Sports Regional Networks, which serve top NFL markets such as New York, Boston, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Washington, D.C., Chicago, Houston and San Francisco, will surround the 2014 NFL season with in-depth news, analysis and original programming on the teams that matter most in more than 43 million U.S. households.

2014 NFL PLAYOFFS ON NBC

Following is NBC’s 2014 NFL playoff telecast schedule.

2014 NBC NFL PLAYOFF SCHEDULE
DATE WEEK MATCHUP
Sat., Jan. 3 Wild Card Baltimore Ravens at Pittsburgh Steelers
Sat., Jan. 10 Divisional TBA at New England Patriots
Sun., Feb. 1 Super Bowl XLIX TBA vs. TBA

Follow “Sunday Night Football” on Twitter @SNFonNBC

Become a fan of “Sunday Night Football” on Facebook at: Facebook.com/SNFonNBC

Follow “Sunday Night Football” on Instagram @snfonnbc

Visit SNF All-Access at: http://snfallaccess.nbcsports.com/

For more information about NBC Sports Group shows and properties, including press releases, photos, talent and executive bios and headshots, please visit NBCSportsGroupPressBox.com

–NBC SPORTS GROUP–

Larry Fitzgerald & Arizona Cardinals Host Russell Wilson & Seattle Seahawks On NBC’s Sunday Night Football

FNIA-nfl-nbcCoverage Begins with Football Night In America at 7 p.m. ET on NBC

NBC Sports Live Extra to Live Stream Seahawks-Cardinals

Football Night in America Averaging 8.3 Million Viewers This Season, up 4%

NBC Sports Sends Two Lucky Fans to Super Bowl XLIX with the NBC Sports Super Bowl Fan Challenge

FBU Eighth Grade National Championship Game Sunday at 3:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN

STAMFORD, Conn. – Dec. 17, 2014 – Larry Fitzgerald and the NFC West-leading Arizona Cardinals (11-3) host Russell Wilson and the Seattle Seahawks (10-4) this Sunday, Dec. 21, on NBC’s Sunday Night Football.  The game will take place at University of Phoenix Stadium, the site of Super Bowl XLIX, which will be broadcast on NBC on Sunday, Feb. 1. Sunday night’s coverage begins with Football Night In America at 7 p.m. ET.

After a 12-6 win last Thursday against the Rams, the Cardinals are the first team in the NFC to clinch a playoff berth. Arizona can retain their spot atop the NFC West this week by defeating the Seahawks on Sunday, giving them first-round bye and home-field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs. The Seahawks can clinch their division for the second season in a row with victories on Sunday and in Week 17.

Last Sunday, Wilson led the Seahawks to a 17-7 win over the 49ers at home, during which RB Marshawn Lynch rushed for 91 yards and a touchdown. Wilson’s career 34 regular-season wins are the most by any quarterback in their first three seasons since 1966.

The two teams last met in Week 12, when the Seahawks broke the Cardinals’ six-game winning streak, beating the team 19-3.

Calling Seahawks-Cardinals is seven-time Emmy Award-winner Al Michaels (play-by-play), in his 29th season as the voice of the NFL’s premier primetime package; 15-time Emmy Award-winner Cris Collinsworth, who has won the Emmy for Outstanding Event Analyst in each of his five seasons in the Sunday Night Football booth; and two-time Emmy Award-winning sideline reporter Michele Tafoya.

NBC’s coverage of Sunday Night Football is led by Emmy Award-winning producer Fred Gaudelli and Emmy Award-winning director Drew EsocoffSunday Night Football has won the Emmy Award for Outstanding Live Sports Series for a record six consecutive years.

Football Night in America, the most-watched studio show in sports, is hosted by 26-time Emmy Award-winner Bob Costas, who will report from University of Phoenix Stadium in in Glendale, Ariz., on Sunday. Costas will be joined on site by Collinsworth, Tafoya, two-time Super Bowl winner Hines Ward, and NBC Sports commentator Josh Elliott.

Dan Patrick co-hosts Football Night from NBC Sports Group’s Studio 1 and will be joined by Super Bowl-winning head coach Tony Dungy, two-time Super Bowl winner Rodney Harrison, Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk on NBCSN and NBCSports.com, and Peter King of Sports Illustrated. Kathryn Tappen will report from AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, on the Colts-Cowboys game.

Through the first 15 weeks of the season, Football Night in America is averaging 8.3 million viewers – up 4% from last year leading into Week 16 (8 million).

RODNEY HARRISON AND AL MICHAELS ON SEAHAWKS-CARDINALS

Harrison: “We know they have a lot of star players, but the thing I’m excited about is the contributions they’re getting from their role players. DT Jordan Hill…CB Byron Maxwell are playing extremely well. They’re starting to blitz more because of all of that great man-to-man coverage, and they’re going against a third-string quarterback on Sunday.”

Michaels: “[Cardinals coach] Bruce Arians has done a magnificent job no matter what’s happened down there. Arizona has a great defense, but they’re faced with their No. 3 and 4 quarterbacks facing Seattle’s defense…and the Seahawks are rolling.”

NBC SPORTS SUPER BOWL FAN CHALLENGE

NBC Sports will send two lucky fans to Super Bowl XLIX in Glendale, Ariz., with the NBC Sports Super Bowl Fan Challenge, as part of its multi-platform promotion leading up to the game on Sunday, Feb. 1, on NBC.

Beginning now through Jan. 6, 2015, fans visit the NBC Sports Super Bowl Fan Challenge and complete weekly challenges for a chance to win the grand prize – VIP access and two (2) tickets to Super Bowl XLIX, as well as hotel and airfare accommodations.

Click here for more info: http://nbcsportsgrouppressbox.com/2014/12/17/two-lucky-fans-will-win-trip-to-super-bowl-xlix-by-entering-nbc-sports-super-bowl-fan-challenge/

FBU EIGHTH GRADE NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP

NBCSN presents live coverage of the FBU Eighth Grade National Championship game this Sunday at 3:30 p.m. ET. 121 teams of eighth graders across 16 different regions competed in the FBU National Championship tournament, with four teams advancing to this weekend’s FBU Championship in Naples, Fla.  After the semifinal round this Saturday, two teams will advance to this Sunday’s FBU Eighth Grade National Championship game.

Paul Burmeister will serve as the play-by-play announcer, joined in the booth by Anthony Herron at Naples High School in Naples, Fla. 

NBC SPORTS LIVE EXTRA

For the seventh consecutive season, Sunday Night Football will be streamed live online. NBC Sports Live Extra, NBC Sports Group’s live streaming product, will stream all SNF games to desktops and tablets. The full HD-quality video stream will come directly from NBC’s broadcast of SNF. For desktops, NBC Sports Live Extra can be accessed at NBCSports.com/liveextra. The NBC Sports Live Extra app is available at the App Store for iPad and iPod touch, and on select tablet devices within Google Play.

SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL DIGITAL COVERAGE

SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL ALL-ACCESS SNF All-Access includes exclusive photos and videos of the Sunday Night Football production team, look-ins on SNF production meetings, Michele Tafoya’s “Ten With Tafoya” interviews with NFL players, and conversations with SNF and FNIA talent.

SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL SOCIAL MEDIA:

NBC Sports Group’s comprehensive social media coverage includes the Sunday Night Football Facebook page, providing exclusive behind-the-scenes SNF content & digital content from NBCSports.comSNF All AccessProFootballTalk.com, and Rotoworld.com, @SNFonNBC, using tweets, photos, Vines and videos & real-time tweets from Michele Tafoya, and a look at SNF through the filters of Instagram.

SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL BUS

NBC Sports Group’s Sunday Night Football bus returns this season to travel the country visiting the host cities of all 17 Sunday Night Football games and postseason games, including Super Bowl XLIX. The bus arrives in each city two to three days prior to the game and stops at local landmarks and events, where fans have the opportunity to interact with America’s most-watched primetime television show via exclusive memorabilia, and an interactive 55-inch touch screen housing social media elements, photos and video. Fans can digitally follow the Sunday Night Football bus at NBCSports.com/FollowSNF.

“THE SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL”

For the third consecutive season NBC Sports presents “The Sunday Night Football,” a custom-made football from Wilson, which will travel with the SNF crew all season. Fans of SNF on Facebook and Twitter can keep up with “The Sunday Night Football” on the SNF Facebook page, and at the end of each SNF game, “The Sunday Night Football” will be signed by the player of the game.

For more information on Sunday Night Football’s comprehensive digital coverage, click here: http://nbcsportsgrouppressbox.com/2014/08/28/nbc-sports-group-surrounds-week-1-of-2014-nfl-season-with-nfl-kickoff-2014-and-sunday-night-football/

NFL TURNING POINT – TONIGHT AT 11 PM ET ON NBCSN

Tonight’s all new edition of NFL Turning Point, NBCSN’s Emmy Award-nominated weekly NFL show co-produced by NFL Films, will feature in-depth analysis of Sunday’s matchup between Tony Romo and the Dallas Cowboys vs. Mark Sanchez and the Philadelphia Eagles. Airing tonight at 11 p.m. ETNFL Turning Point will breakdown the back-and-forth battle between the two teams this past Sunday, and review how the Dallas Cowboys rallied to beat the Eagles 38-27 after blowing a 21-point lead.

In addition, this week’s edition will analyze the Denver Broncos new run-first offense, and feature wired-for-sound segments with Ravens LB Terrell Suggs, Giants DE Jason Pierre-Paul, and Panthers WR Kelvin Benjamin.

Hosted by Football Night In America’s Dan Patrick, the hour-long program will air throughout the entire NFL season, including the playoffs and Super Bowl.

Click here for more info: http://nbcsportsgrouppressbox.com/2014/12/16/cowboys-eagles-headline-new-episode-of-nfl-turning-point-tomorrow-night-at-11-p-m-et-on-nbcsn/

PRO FOOTBALL TALK ON NBCSN WEEKNIGHTS, 5:30 P.M. ET

Pro Football Talk, NBCSN’s daily NFL studio show co-hosted by Mike Florio and Paul Burmeister, airs at 5:30 p.m. ET every Monday through Friday. Pro Football Talk provides all-encompassing coverage of the NFL, and features a roster of NBC Sports football commentators who share a combined eight Super Bowl titles and 169 seasons of NFL experience, including Cris Collinsworth (Thursdays), Tony Dungy (Tuesdays), Hines Ward (Wednesdays), Doug Flutie (Fridays), Jason Taylor, Takeo Spikes, Brian Westbrook, Ross Tucker, Jon Ritchie, NFL coach Kevin Gilbride, and longtime NFL athletic trainer Mike Ryan.

FANTASY FOOTBALL LIVE ON NBCSN TUESDAY – THURSDAY NIGHTS, 6:30 P.M. ET

Fantasy Football Live is a live and on-demand, multi-platform, fantasy football program that airs Tuesday through Thursday nights at 6:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN, combining the best fantasy football expertise from Yahoo! Sports and NBC Sports, including unique metrics from Yahoo! Sports’ leading fantasy football platform, and full integration with NBC Sports’ premier fantasy sports information site, Rotoworld.com.

Hosted by NBC Sports’ Dave Briggs,  Fantasy Football Live features a roster of Yahoo Sports, NBC Sports and Rotoworld fantasy analysts, including Rotoworld’s Kay Adams, as well as Yahoo Sports’ Brad EvansBrandon Funston and Andy Behrens.

NBCSN SUNDAY SPORTS REPORT SUNDAY NIGHTS, 11:30 P.M. ET

NBCSN Sunday Sports Report, a new, weekly, one-hour program that showcases the news and highlights of the sports properties that are carried by NBC Sports Group, airs every Sunday night at 11:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN.

Hosted by Liam McHugh, NBCSN Sunday Sports Report goes in-depth into the high-profile sports properties that primarily air on NBC and NBCSN, including the Olympics, NFL, NASCAR, NHL, Premier League, golf, Triple Crown horse racing, Notre Dame Football, Formula One, IndyCar and more.

Click here for more info: http://nbcsportsgrouppressbox.com/2014/07/14/nbcsn-sunday-sports-report-premieres-august-17/

NBC SPORTS RADIO

NBC Sports Radio will surround the 2014 NFL season with daily coverage on 439 radio affiliates, highlighted by McNabb and Malone; an all-sports show that leverages the unique perspective of two former NFL quarterbacks, and Safety Blitz with Rodney Harrison; featuring three-time All Pro and two-time Super Bowl-winner Rodney Harrison.

To listen to a live stream of NBC Sports Radio, or find your local affiliate, visit www.NBCSportsRadio.com

NBC SPORTS REGIONAL NETWORKS

NBC Sports Regional Networks, which serve top NFL markets such as New York, Boston, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Washington, D.C., Chicago, Houston and San Francisco, will surround the 2014 NFL season with in-depth news, analysis and original programming on the teams that matter most in more than 43 million U.S. households.

2014 SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL

NBC will broadcast 19 primetime NFL games during the 2014 regular season.

2014 NBC SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL SCHEDULE
DATE WEEK MATCHUP
*Sun. Dec. 21 Week 16 Seattle Seahawks at Arizona Cardinals
*Sun. Dec. 28 Week 17 TBA
   

*Flex Week

Follow “Sunday Night Football” on Twitter @SNFonNBC

Become a fan of “Sunday Night Football” on Facebook at: Facebook.com/SNFonNBC

Follow “Sunday Night Football” on Instagram @snfonnbc

Visit SNF All-Access at: http://snfallaccess.nbcsports.com/

For more information about NBC Sports Group shows and properties, including press releases, photos, talent and executive bios and headshots, please visit NBCSportsGroupPressBox.com

–NBC SPORTS GROUP–

Notes & Quotes From NBC’s “Football Night In America” – Week 15

FNIA-nfl-nbcI can’t believe in the Cincinnati Bengals. I try each and every week. I just can’t believe in them.” – Rodney Harrison

The Colts are not an elite team. They are the best team in the AFC South, but they are not elite.” – Tony Dungy

“The whole Aaron Rodgers MVP thing is now a little up in the air.” – Cris Collinsworth

Stamford, Conn. – December 14, 2014 – Following are highlights from NBC’s Football Night in America, the most-watched studio show in sports. Bob Costas opened the show live from inside Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pa., to preview Cowboys-Eagles. Costas was joined on site by Sunday Night Football analyst Cris Collinsworth, sideline reporter Michele Tafoya, NBC NFL analyst Hines Ward, and NBC Sports’ Josh Elliott.

Dan Patrick co-hosted Football Night from NBC Sports Group’s Studio 1. He was joined by Super Bowl-winning head coach Tony Dungy; two-time Super Bowl winner Rodney HarrisonMike Florio of ProFootballTalk on NBCSports.com, and NFL Insider Peter KingAlex Flanagan reported from Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, Calif., on the Broncos-Chargers game.

In addition, Costas interviewed Eagles RB LeSean McCoy, and Elliott spoke with Cowboys WR Dez Bryant.

Following are highlights from Football Night in America:

ON PACKERS

Ward: “The team was sloppy. Aaron Rodgers had an off day, but the wide receivers had way too many dropped passes. Jordy Nelson dropped a huge touchdown pass. I give credit to Buffalo’s defense.”

Collinsworth: “The whole Aaron Rodgers MVP thing is now a little up in the air. I had already cast my ballot. I was going to vote for him. It was over, but now it’s a little shaky.”

Harrison on Packers: “I don’t think we need to panic with Green Bay. They played one bad game and they were red hot the last five weeks.  I do believe that this team will win the division. They will bounce back next week and they will beat Detroit in Week 17.”

ON SEAHAWKS

Collinsworth: “Seattle is back. Seattle could end up with home field advantage throughout the playoffs.”

ON COLTS

Dungy: “The Colts are not an elite team. They are the best team in the AFC South division, but they are not elite. They have some holes in their run defense. They have some skilled position players, but they are not a great team.”

Harrison: “They win a lot of close games. This is a very resilient team, but their offensive line is not very good. They are going to have problems in the playoffs.”

ON BENGALS

Harrison: “I can’t believe in the Cincinnati Bengals. I try each and every week. They gave up 42 points to the Pittsburgh Steelers and they come back and they beat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers by one point. I just can’t believe in them.”

King on Bengals’ defensive approach to Manziel: “The Cincinnati Bengals did something really bright in the game against Johnny Manziel. They looked back at his college career and saw that the worst game he played in college was against LSU last year. The key in that game, don’t let Manziel go left. They forced him to the right. The biggest play in this game, he throws a terrible interception. Give credit to Bengals’ defensive coordinator Paul Guenther, for finding that.”

ON VIKINGS

Florio on Adrian Peterson:  “Despite talking about retiring and making a run at the Olympics, Adrian Peterson intends to play football in 2015. One of the primary goals of the lawsuit to be filed as soon as Monday, is to secure his reinstatement as soon as possible in the 2015 offseason, so that he can plan his next move. And that next move could include a new team.”

ON CARDINALS

King on Cardinals next Sunday: “One of the things that you’re going to see, or that you could see, is a relief pitcher at quarterback, for the new starter Ryan Lindley. Head coach Bruce Arians told me that he could have a package of plays ready for Logan Thomas, the rookie from Virginia Tech.”

ON GIANTS

Dungy on Odell Beckham Jr.: “He has put the “O” back in the New York offense.”

Dungy on Giants’ offense: “Maybe they don’t need a new quarterback. Maybe it’s just receivers. If Eli had Beckham and Cruz the whole year, I think he’d be doing alright.”

Harrison on Odell Beckham Jr.: “As long as Eli can avoid those interceptions, he’ll be fine. When I look at Odell Beckham, he’s one of those receivers. He’s so irritating to try to defend, because he plays with so much energy and he plays for four quarters. He’s amazing. He can do everything on the football field.”

ON STEELERS

Dungy: “They are not great, but now they have two home games. All they have to do is win their last two home games and they win the division.”

Patrick on Le’Veon Bell’s second touchdown: “That has got to make A.C. Slater, Screech, and Mr. Belding happy.”

ON RAVENS

Harrison: “I like Baltimore. I think they will make the playoffs, whether it is by winning the division or by Wild Card.”

ON BROWNS

Dungy on Manziel: “He hung in there, but I don’t know what people expected to see. This is what rookie quarterbacks look like. It’s not college. There are some good defenders out there.”

ON CHIEFS

Dungy on De’Anthony Thomas: “I’ve seen him live. He’s fast, fast.”

ON COWBOYS

Tafoya on Tony Romo in the team’s previous matchup with the Eagles: “Romo told me before that Thanksgiving day game, he didn’t take his usual painkilling shot for his back. He thought he was feeling pretty good. Afterwards, he had serious regrets about that and he assures me that tonight he will be getting that shot before the game.”

Collinsworth on Romo’s pregame painkilling procedure: “He comes out for pregame warm-up, goes all the way through warm-up, goes back in, takes off his pads, gets the shot and then comes back out on the field. We asked him, ‘How long does it take?,’ and he said, ‘About 30 minutes or so.’”

Dungy on Tony Romo: “I think he will be better tonight and will have a big game.”

Harrison on playing on the road: “A lot of players like going on the road. I used to love going on the road. You have less distractions. You have quality time to yourself. When you walked in to that stadium and saw 70,000 people, it was like us against 70,000 people. It definitely motivates you.”

ON AFC NORTH

Harrison on Ravens: “I like Baltimore and I think they will make the playoffs, whether it’s they win the division or by a wildcard…That front seven. I love the experience of the coaching staff as well as the players. ”

Harrison on Steelers: “They have two tough games: Cincinnati, Kansas City. I think they will lose at least one of them.”

ON NFC SOUTH

Dungy: “I think it’s going to come down to Carolina and New Orleans. The winner of that game is going to win.”

Harrison: “I like the Saints. I like the experience of Drew Brees and I don’t trust Matt Ryan, nor do I trust Derek Anderson or Cam Newton.”

ON NFC WEST

Dungy: “Seattle is coming on. Arizona doesn’t have the quarterback, and might not have Drew Stanton. This game next week is going to be for the division title, and probably now, for the number one seed.”

ON NFLPA STATEMENT

Florio on NFLPA: “The NFL and the NFL Players’ Association continue to agree to disagree, and they’re disagreeing sharply on the new Personal Conduct Policy that was unveiled this week. In a statement issued by NFLPA Executive Director DeMaurice Smith to NBC Sports, Smith accuses the NFL of embarrassing missteps, says the Commissioner repeatedly abused his discretion in handling player misconduct cases and engaged in egregious management. Ultimately, accusing the owners of missing the opportunity to bridge the credibility gap with players that is nearing the point of no return.”

DeMaurice Smith’s statement to NBC on the NFL’s new Personal Conduct Policy: “The NFL owners had an opportunity to show leadership and vision in the wake of the embarrassing missteps by the league office. Limiting a commissioner’s power who has repeatedly abused his discretion is a good start, but in light of the NFL’s wild inconsistencies and egregious mismanagement, it does not go far enough. If the only goal of this policy was to appease our sponsors in the short-term to get through this crisis, then they succeeded, but they missed an opportunity to bridge the credibility gap with players that is nearing the point of no return.”

ON DICK ENBERG

Costas on Dick Enberg’s election into the Baseball Hall of Fame: “We at NBC salute a longtime colleague and friend, Dick Enberg, who for so many years was the voice of so many sports on NBC. This past week, Dick was elected to the broadcasters’ wing of the Baseball Hall of Fame. The ceremony is next summer in Cooperstown. For now, congratulations Dick. Oh, my. What a well-deserved honor.”

ON MARCUS MARIOTA

Dungy: “I think those teams at the top of that list (worst NFL record this season), including Tampa Bay, they are loving Marcus Mariota right now. He is a great young man. I know him well. Everybody loves Marcus, including me.”

Below are excerpts from Costas’ interview with McCoy, and Elliott’s interview with Bryant.

LESEAN MCCOY WITH BOB COSTAS

McCoy on matching up against Cowboys RB DeMarco Murray: “I’ll make sure if he wins the (rushing) title, I’ll send him the belt. Any competitive player looks across the field and wants to beat your position out, and feel like you can give your team the edge.”

McCoy on his unique cutback ability: “It’s just something I feel. I never predetermine if I’m going to do it or not. It’s my gift and curse. I’ve been blessed to do it and be successful with it for so long, that sometimes I try to do it and get a big loss.  Then Chip (Kelly) is pissed.”

McCoy on the Eagles’ high-speed offense: “I feel like the whole game is like that. People don’t think we get tired, but I get tired. The mindset is that the defense is a lot more tired than we are, and that’s our advantage. The only difference is that the referees kind of slow us down.”

McCoy to Costas on his career success playing on Sunday Night Football: “It’s all about you. I don’t want to disappoint you (laughing). I think good players show up in big games, and I think Sunday night is one of the biggest stages to play on.”

DEZ BRYANT WITH JOSH ELLIOTT

Bryant on his chemistry with Cowboys QB Tony Romo: “Off the field, it’s not just about football. We know one another, we talk family with one another, we go out to eat with one another. I think that’s how you build that chemistry.”

Elliott to Bryant on his animated nature on the sideline: “Tony (Romo) has said that when we watch you on TV, one might think you’re ripping into a teammate. But when we hear you, when you’re mic’d for sound, it’s actually exactly the opposite.”

Bryant: “I want those guys to know that you’ve got a fan here on the sideline. As soon as you make that stop, as soon as you do something good, I want to be around and congratulate you. I want you to see that I’ve got your back and I’m here 100 percent.”

Bryant on the Cowboys’ 33-10 loss to the Eagles on Thanksgiving Day: “They were ready. They were more prepared. We watched the film. We saw a lot of things that we could have done differently. We’re going to fix those things, and it should be a very different ballgame.”

Bryant on importance of tonight’s game: “We just have to take advantage of the opportunity. We’ve got to stay together, work hard, and if we do what we need to do, I think we’ll come out on top.”

FOOTBALL NIGHT IN AMERICA

Tony Romo, Demarco Murray And Dallas Cowboys Visit Mark Sanchez, LeSean Mccoy And Philadelphia Eagles On NBC’s Sunday Night Football

FNIA-nfl-nbcCoverage Begins with Football Night In America at 7 p.m. ET on NBC

NBC Sports Live Extra to Live Stream Cowboys-Eagles

NFL Turning Point Airs Tonight at 11 p.m. ET on NBCSN

Pro Football Talk Weekdays at 5:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN

NBCSN Sunday Sports Report Has Comprehensive Post-Game Coverage Sunday Nights at 11:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN

STAMFORD, Conn. – Dec. 10, 2014 – NBC’s Sunday Night Football presents a battle for first place in the NFC East, when Tony Romo, DeMarco Murray and the Dallas Cowboys (9-4) square off against Mark Sanchez, LeSean McCoy and the Philadelphia Eagles (9-4). Sunday night’s coverage begins with Football Night In America at 7 p.m. ET.

The last time the Cowboys and Eagles met this late in the season with at least a .690 winning percentage was more than three decades ago, on Dec. 21, 1980 (Dallas 11-4; Philadelphia 12-3). In addition, the Cowboys bring the NFL’s only undefeated road record (6-0) to Philadelphia on Sunday night, where the Eagles have posted a 6-1 record this season.

Sunday night’s showdown between the Cowboys and Eagles marks the second meeting between the two teams in an 18-day span. On Thanksgiving Day, McCoy rushed for 159 yards and a touchdown, and Sanchez passed for 217 yards and totaled two touchdowns in a 33-10 win over the Cowboys in Dallas.

The Cowboys rebounded last Thursday night with a 41-28 win over the Chicago Bears, led by Murray’s season-high 179 rushing yards, and three touchdown passes from Romo. The Eagles lost 24-14 to the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday, as Seattle’s defense held Philadelphia to 139 yards of total offense. Murray currently leads the NFL with 1,606 rushing yards, while McCoy ranks fourth (1,068).

Calling Cowboys-Eagles is seven-time Emmy Award-winner Al Michaels (play-by-play), in his 29th season as the voice of the NFL’s premier primetime package; 15-time Emmy Award-winner Cris Collinsworth, who has won the Emmy for Outstanding Event Analyst in each of his five seasons in the Sunday Night Football booth; and two-time Emmy Award-winning sideline reporter Michele Tafoya.

NBC’s coverage of Sunday Night Football is led by Emmy Award-winning producer Fred Gaudelli and Emmy Award-winning director Drew EsocoffSunday Night Football has won the Emmy Award for Outstanding Live Sports Series for a record six consecutive years.

Football Night in America, the most-watched studio show in sports, is hosted by 26-time Emmy Award-winner Bob Costas, who will report from Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pa., on Sunday. Costas will be joined on site by Collinsworth, Tafoya, two-time Super Bowl winner Hines Ward, and NBC Sports commentator Josh Elliott.

Dan Patrick co-hosts Football Night from NBC Sports Group’s Studio 1 and will be joined by Super Bowl-winning head coach Tony Dungy, two-time Super Bowl winner Rodney Harrison, Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk on NBCSN and NBCSports.com, and Peter King of Sports Illustrated. Alex Flanagan will report from Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, Calif., on the Broncos-Chargers game.

TONY DUNGY AND RODNEY HARRISON ON COWBOYS-EAGLES

Dungy on playoff implications of Cowboys-Eagles: “This game is going to be for the NFC East division title. The loser may not make the playoffs, even at 11-5. Nobody wants to play the Seahawks in the playoffs, especially in Seattle. That’s why the pressure is on Philadelphia, Dallas, and all of the NFC teams to keep winning, so that if they do have to play the Seahawks, it won’t have to be out in Seattle. ”

Harrison on Sanchez: “I’m interested to see how Mark Sanchez responds. He played well against Dallas and came back down to earth (against Seattle).”

NBC SPORTS LIVE EXTRA

For the seventh consecutive season, Sunday Night Football will be streamed live online. NBC Sports Live Extra, NBC Sports Group’s live streaming product, will stream all SNF games to desktops and tablets. The full HD-quality video stream will come directly from NBC’s broadcast of SNF. For desktops, NBC Sports Live Extra can be accessed at NBCSports.com/liveextra. The NBC Sports Live Extra app is available at the App Store for iPad and iPod touch, and on select tablet devices within Google Play.

SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL DIGITAL COVERAGE

SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL ALL-ACCESS SNF All-Access includes exclusive photos and videos of the Sunday Night Football production team, look-ins on SNF production meetings, Michele Tafoya’s “Ten With Tafoya” interviews with NFL players, and conversations with SNF and FNIA talent.

SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL SOCIAL MEDIA

NBC Sports Group’s comprehensive social media coverage includes the Sunday Night Football Facebook page, providing exclusive behind-the-scenes SNF content & digital content from NBCSports.comSNF All AccessProFootballTalk.com, and Rotoworld.com, @SNFonNBC, using tweets, photos, Vines and videos & real-time tweets from Michele Tafoya, and a look at SNF through the filters of Instagram.

SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL BUS

NBC Sports Group’s Sunday Night Football bus returns this season to travel the country visiting the host cities of all 17 Sunday Night Football games and postseason games, including Super Bowl XLIX. The bus arrives in each city two to three days prior to the game and stops at local landmarks and events, where fans have the opportunity to interact with America’s most-watched primetime television show via exclusive memorabilia, and an interactive 55-inch touch screen housing social media elements, photos and video. Fans can digitally follow the Sunday Night Football bus at NBCSports.com/FollowSNF.

“THE SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL”

For the third consecutive season NBC Sports presents “The Sunday Night Football,” a custom-made football from Wilson, which will travel with the SNF crew all season. Fans of SNF on Facebook and Twitter can keep up with “The Sunday Night Football” on the SNF Facebook page, and at the end of each SNF game, “The Sunday Night Football” will be signed by the player of the game.

For more information on Sunday Night Football’s comprehensive digital coverage, click here: http://nbcsportsgrouppressbox.com/2014/08/28/nbc-sports-group-surrounds-week-1-of-2014-nfl-season-with-nfl-kickoff-2014-and-sunday-night-football/

NFL TURNING POINT – TONIGHT AT 11 P.M. ET ON NBCSN

Tonight’s edition of NFL Turning Point, NBCSN’s Emmy Award-nominated weekly NFL show co-produced by NFL Films, will feature in-depth analysis of Sunday’s matchup between Tom Brady and the New England Patriots vs. Philip Rivers and the San Diego Chargers, as the Patriots overcame an early deficit to defeat the Chargers in San Diego on NBC’s Sunday Night Football.

In addition, this week’s edition will analyze fourth-quarter comebacks on the road by the Indianapolis Colts and Pittsburgh Steelers, as well as dominant defensive road performances by the Seattle Seahawks and Baltimore Ravens.

The show will also include a film study with Texans Pro Bowl T Duane Brown, examining how his group blocks for RB Arian Foster.

Hosted by Football Night In America’s Dan Patrick, the hour-long program will air throughout the entire NFL season, including the playoffs and Super Bowl.

Click here for more info: http://nbcsportsgrouppressbox.com/2014/12/09/patriots-chargers-headline-new-episode-of-nfl-turning-point-tomorrow-night-at-11-p-m-et-on-nbcsn/

PRO FOOTBALL TALK ON NBCSN WEEKNIGHTS, 5:30 P.M. ET

Pro Football Talk, NBCSN’s daily NFL studio show co-hosted by Mike Florio and Paul Burmeister, airs at 5:30 p.m. ET every Monday through Friday. Pro Football Talk provides all-encompassing coverage of the NFL, and features a roster of NBC Sports football commentators who share a combined eight Super Bowl titles and 169 seasons of NFL experience, including Cris Collinsworth (Thursdays), Tony Dungy (Tuesdays), Hines Ward (Wednesdays), Doug Flutie (Fridays), Jason Taylor, Takeo Spikes, Brian Westbrook, Ross Tucker, Jon Ritchie, NFL coach Kevin Gilbride, and longtime NFL athletic trainer Mike Ryan.

FANTASY FOOTBALL LIVE ON NBCSN TUESDAY – THURSDAY NIGHTS, 6:30 P.M. ET

Fantasy Football Live is a live and on-demand, multi-platform, fantasy football program that airs Tuesday through Thursday nights at 6:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN, combining the best fantasy football expertise from Yahoo! Sports and NBC Sports, including unique metrics from Yahoo! Sports’ leading fantasy football platform, and full integration with NBC Sports’ premier fantasy sports information site, Rotoworld.com.

Hosted by NBC Sports’ Dave Briggs,  Fantasy Football Live features a roster of Yahoo Sports, NBC Sports and Rotoworld fantasy analysts, including Rotoworld’s Kay Adams, as well as Yahoo Sports’ Brad EvansBrandon Funston and Andy Behrens.

NBCSN SUNDAY SPORTS REPORT SUNDAY NIGHTS, 11:30 P.M. ET

NBCSN Sunday Sports Report, a new, weekly, one-hour program that showcases the news and highlights of the sports properties that are carried by NBC Sports Group, airs every Sunday night at 11:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN.

Hosted by Liam McHugh, NBCSN Sunday Sports Report goes in-depth into the high-profile sports properties that primarily air on NBC and NBCSN, including the Olympics, NFL, NASCAR, NHL, Premier League, golf, Triple Crown horse racing, Notre Dame Football, Formula One, IndyCar and more.

Click here for more info: http://nbcsportsgrouppressbox.com/2014/07/14/nbcsn-sunday-sports-report-premieres-august-17/

NBC SPORTS RADIO

NBC Sports Radio will surround the 2014 NFL season with daily coverage on 439 radio affiliates, highlighted by McNabb and Malone; an all-sports show that leverages the unique perspective of two former NFL quarterbacks, and Safety Blitz with Rodney Harrison; featuring three-time All Pro and two-time Super Bowl-winner Rodney Harrison.

To listen to a live stream of NBC Sports Radio, or find your local affiliate, visit www.NBCSportsRadio.com

NBC SPORTS REGIONAL NETWORKS

NBC Sports Regional Networks, which serve top NFL markets such as New York, Boston, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Washington, D.C., Chicago, Houston and San Francisco, will surround the 2014 NFL season with in-depth news, analysis and original programming on the teams that matter most in more than 43 million U.S. households.

2014 SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL

NBC will broadcast 19 primetime NFL games during the 2014 regular season including NBC’s annual Thanksgiving night game, featuring the heated NFC West rivalry between the Seattle Seahawks and San Francisco 49ers.

2014 NBC SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL SCHEDULE
DATE WEEK MATCHUP
*Sun. Dec. 14 Week 15 Dallas Cowboys at Philadelphia Eagles
*Sun. Dec. 21 Week 16 Seattle Seahawks at Arizona Cardinals
*Sun. Dec. 28 Week 17 TBA
   

*Flex Week

** Thanksgiving Night Game

Follow “Sunday Night Football” on Twitter @SNFonNBC

Become a fan of “Sunday Night Football” on Facebook at: Facebook.com/SNFonNBC

Follow “Sunday Night Football” on Instagram @snfonnbc

Visit SNF All-Access at: http://snfallaccess.nbcsports.com/

For more information about NBC Sports Group shows and properties, including press releases, photos, talent and executive bios and headshots, please visit NBCSportsGroupPressBox.com

–NBC SPORTS GROUP–

NOTES & QUOTES FROM NBC’S “FOOTBALL NIGHT IN AMERICA” – WEEK 14

FNIA-nfl-nbc“I believe the Ravens will win the division.” – Rodney Harrison on AFC North

“Bobby Wagner has brought the swagger back to that Seattle defense.” – Tony Dungy

“They have the weaponry to beat Indianapolis…but they’ve got a mental block. None of those guys have ever won up there.” – Dungy on Texans at Colts next week

“There’s a chance we’re going to see Robert Griffin III back under center sooner rather than later.” – Mike Florio

STAMFORD, Conn. – December 7, 2014 – Following are highlights from NBC’s Football Night in America, the most-watched studio show in sports. Bob Costas opened the show live from inside Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, Calif., to preview Patriots-Chargers. Costas was joined on site by Sunday Night Football analyst Cris Collinsworth, sideline reporter Michele Tafoya, NBC NFL analyst Hines Ward, and NBC Sports’ Josh Elliott.

Dan Patrick co-hosted Football Night from NBC Sports Group’s Studio 1. He was joined by Super Bowl-winning head coach Tony Dungy; two-time Super Bowl winner Rodney Harrison, Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk on NBCSports.com, and NFL Insider Peter King. Kathryn Tappen reported from Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pa., on the Seahawks-Eagles game.

In addition, Costas interviewed Patriots DT Vince Wilfork, and Elliott spoke with Chargers QB Philip Rivers.

Following are highlights from Football Night in America:

ON AFC NORTH

Dungy: “Cincinnati had a chance to get some distance and take control, but Pittsburgh, as inconsistent as they’ve been playing, they won the game today. And now, if they win out, they win the North.”

Harrison: “I believe the Ravens will win the division. They play against Jacksonville, Houston, and Cleveland. I don’t trust the Bengals. I see them each and every week and I’m always shaking my head. I just can’t believe they continue to win football games.”

Ward on Steelers: “Today was a must-win for the Steelers. Big Ben continues to show to everyone that he is still an elite quarterback…Offensively, I love what they’re doing…Running back Le’Veon Bell is a superstar. He can do so many different things. But I think in order for them to make a serious push at the playoffs, they have to play better in the secondary because they got torched today.”

Collinsworth on Bengals: “I still have to remind everyone, and myself, that the Bengals are still in first place in that division…(laughing about how their tie may help their playoff chances) We’re hanging on every thread at this moment right now. We love ties in Cincy.”

Patrick on Ravens: “You don’t have Haloti Ngata for the rest of the regular season and Elvis Dumervil stepped up.”

Harrison on Ravens: “You’re talking about somebody that’s overshadowed — Elvis Dumervil. He’s been overshadowed because of all the attention we pay to J.J. Watt.”

ON SEAHAWKS

Dungy: “Bobby Wagner has brought the swagger back to that Seattle defense.”

Harrison: “You talk about Bobby Wagner and Richard Sherman, but Byron Maxwell, he’s been playing excellent cornerback.”

http://www.nbcsports.com/football/nfl/seahawks-put-eagles-tempo-offense-pause

ON TEXANS

Dungy on upcoming game at Indianapolis: “They have the weaponry to beat Indianapolis. They’ve got a great pass rush. They’ve got a good running game. That’s how you beat Indy…but they’ve got a mental block. None of those guys have ever won up there.”

Harrison: “It seems like every week I’m watching the same tape of J.J. Watt. It’s unbelievable. Indy has a banged up offensive line. J.J. Watt should have a big game.”

ON BRONCOS

Patrick: “What a difference-maker C.J. Anderson has been.”

ON CARDINALS

Dungy: “I thought defensive coordinator Todd Bowles called a great game.  He put the pressure on Alex Smith, lowered the box and made Alex Smith (try to) win it…Arizona’s defense came up big all day.”

Harrison on Todd Bowles: “He wasn’t afraid of Alex Smith.”

ON CHIEFS

Harrison: “My biggest concern with Kansas City going into this game, and to the entire season, is their inability to throw the ball down the field. You can’t just rely on Jamaal Charles.”

ON REDSKINS

Florio: “Washington quarterback Colt McCoy has that neck strain, but even if he’s healthy, there’s a chance we’re going to see Robert Griffin III back under center sooner rather than later as the starting quarterback. There’s been so much talk out of Washington that coach Jay Gruden is done with Griffin, but the truth is the organization still believes in Griffin, that they can get him back in the right mindset, and that, in the off-season with the draft picks back and with salary cap space, they can make the team better around him.”

King on Jay Gruden: “The Washington Post reported this weekend that Jay Gruden, the coach of Washington, could be quote ‘one-and-done,’ meaning out after his first season as a head coach. After the game, NBC Washington reported that Bruce Allen, general manager of the team, has told Gruden, ‘You will not be one and done. You’ll be back next year.’”

http://www.nbcsports.com/football/nfl/could-jay-gruden-be-one-and-done-washington

ON 49ERS

Dungy on if 49ers are done: “Yes. I thought they were after (the Thanksgiving night game). Now it’s official.”

Harrison: “Colin Kaepernick, no confidence. And they miss those veteran linebackers.”

ON VIKINGS

Patrick: “If you add Adrian Peterson, are you looking at a playoff team here in Minnesota?”

Dungy: “Possibly. They rode Adrian Peterson to the playoffs a couple of years ago and Teddy Bridgewater’s giving them better quarterbacking than they had then.”

Harrison: “They have the potential of being a playoff team.”

ON PANTHERS

Patrick: “You can’t stop Fozzy Whittaker.”

ON SAINTS

Harrison: “I still have the Saints winning the division…I trust Drew Brees in the big moment.”

Patrick: “As long as they’re not playing at home, they’ve got a chance to win.”

ON PATRIOTS

Collinsworth: “The margin of error for New England is now gone…If the Chargers don’t get them, I think the Patriots will run the table.”

ON CHARGERS

Ward on Philip Rivers: “That’s why it’s hard to put him in that elite category, because he hasn’t had a lot of success in the big games. He’s going to put up a lot of big numbers, but often you find him making the crucial mistake that costs this team. But I love his cockiness and his will to compete.”

ON MOVING TO LOS ANGELES

Florio: “Do not overlook the San Diego Chargers. There’s thinking in League circles that because the Chargers have been trying for so long to get a new stadium in San Diego they’re in a better position to satisfy the relocation policy than the other two teams (Oakland and St. Louis). Also, the owners would be inclined to allow a team to move just a fairly short distance, more inclined to do that than have a team move across the country. As for the Chargers, publicly they’re saying nothing, but privately they’re keeping all options open.”

Below are excerpts from Costas’ interview with Wilfork, and Elliott’s interview with Rivers.

VINCE WILFORK WITH BOB COSTAS

On bandwagon fans: “We’ve been great, we’ve sucked, we were this, and we were that. The only thing we have is our fans and what we have in that locker room. When we were down, we were kicked a lot. Now we’re up, all of the sudden it’s the Patriots this, the Patriots that. I told our guys, ‘We don’t have time for that.’ The only thing we’re concentrating on is what we have in here.”

On whether he wishes he had more chances to get in the end zone: “Early in my career, I used to talk about it a lot. But now, it is what it is. If it happens, I’ll be prepared for it. I play catch a lot, so they know the ability that I have, and it’s possible I could do it. We just have so many great options on offense that they don’t need me over there.”

On coach Bill Belichick: “He’s a great person. A lot of people don’t understand that because they just see him on Sundays or in the media. But, we have a chance to be around him every day. He’ll come into the locker room and talk with us; in the weight room he’ll come talk and joke. I was just talking with him the other day about my son’s state football game…when I first came up here, [my son] was 6, and now he’s 17. Just being around him every day you get the coach Bill Belichick, and you get the person Bill Belichick, where you can step into his office and talk about anything.”

On the importance of tonight’s game: “Every game is a big game. [Tonight] it happens to be the Chargers – a great football team led by a great quarterback. I love playing against [Philip Rivers] because he is so competitive, he is so fiery. You can just tell how he just gets his guys going. I like to see that in a player, especially coming from a quarterback. You’ll hit him, and he’ll get up and laugh at you and say, ‘That’s all you have?’ It’s an enjoyment to play against somebody like that, who has the passion he has for the game. Philip Rivers got those guys rolling, but we know what we have to do. We have to walk away with a W. It’s going to be tough.”

http://www.nbcsports.com/football/nfl/vince-wilfork-its-about-what-you-have-locker-room

                                          PHILIP RIVERS WITH JOSH ELLIOTT                  

On his game-winning touchdown pass with 38 seconds remaining against Baltimore last week: “It’s either going to end in a touchdown to win or an interception to lose…it was big. All that comes with winning that game. Now it gets no easier for us.”

On hard late-season schedule: “They’re all hard in this league. You see it every week, anybody can beat anybody. The good news for us in the last four [games], we don’t have to play them all in the same day. They give us a break between each of them, which is good.”

On his respect for Tom Brady: “Growing up, I wasn’t as much a fan of the NFL as I was a fan of quarterbacks. Marino, Favre, Elway, Aikman, Montana – all of those guys’ posters were on my wall as a kid. To think, ‘Hey, shoot, you’re getting to play a Tom Brady-led Patriots team.’ That really is special, to get him on Sunday night at our place. If you would have told us Week 1 that this was what it’s going to be, we would have said ‘deal.’”

On his attitude every Sunday: “It’s just passion. My dad is a football coach, and there are times when I see some of his mannerisms, his passion, the way he coached…I’m doing the exact same thing. I hate that sometimes it’s viewed the wrong way, but it’s just like, golly, I hope that when it’s all said and done they’ll be like, ‘That guy loves to play football.’”

FOOTBALL NIGHT IN AMERICA

PREMIER LEAGUE MATCHES CONTINUE ON mun2

NBCUNIVERSAL LOGOS -- Pictured: "mun2" Black Logo  -- (Photo by: mun2)LOS ANGELES – Dec. 4, 2014 – NBCUniversal’s Hispanic cable network mun2 continues its coverage of the 2014/2015 season of the Premier League with two stellar matchups. The network will air Newcastle United vs. Chelsea on Sat., Dec. 6, at 7:40 a.m. ET / 4:40 a.m. PT; followed by Southampton vs. Manchester United on Mon., Dec. 8, at 2:55 p.m. ET / 11:55 a.m. PT.

mun2 continues its unprecedented coverage across multiple platforms which includes streaming through select pay-TV providers and on Video on Demand (VOD).

Newcastle United sits with twenty points on the table after tying Burnley 1-1 on Tuesday. The Magpies have only lost once in their last eight premier league encounters. League leader Chelsea continues undefeated this season and in first place with 36 points, after a 3-0 drubbing of Tottenham on Wednesday. The Blues got a goal from veteran forward Didier Drogba who started in place of suspended Diego Costa.

This seasons surprise Southampton, has lost their last two consecutive matches in league play and have dropped to third on the table. The Saints were defeated by Arsenal on Tuesday 1-0, giving up an 89th minute goal to Alexis Sanchez in a hard fought match. Manchester United has won their last four in a row, including a 2-1 victory vs. Stoke City on Tuesday. The Red Devils sit fourth on the table and have a great opportunity to seize third place with a victory on Monday at St. Mary’s Stadium.

Legendary commentator Andres Cantor and former Mexican National Team player Manuel Sol will call both matches.

###

NBC Sports Group Welcomes Kyle Petty To NASCAR Broadcast Team

nbc-sports-groupPopular and Experienced NASCAR Analyst Joins Krista Voda on Sprint Cup and XFINITY Series Pre- and Post-race Coverage on NBC and NBCSN

STAMFORD, Conn. — December 4, 2014 — NBC Sports Group welcomes one of the most-liked personalities in motorsports to its multiplatform NASCAR coverage as Kyle Petty joins its upcoming race day broadcast team on NBC and NBCSN.  Petty will work alongside host Krista Voda as an analyst during pre- and post-race shows surrounding Sprint Cup and XFINITY Series race coverage, which launches this July. In addition, Petty will continue his role as a regular contributor to NASCAR AMERICA on NBCSN.  The announcement was made today by Sam Flood, Executive Producer, NBC Sports and NBCSN.

“Kyle Petty brings a lifetime of experience to our team that is unmatched,” said Flood. “As a driver, team owner, philanthropist, and multigenerational observer of the sport, he has seen it all, and has great perspectives across NASCAR’s full spectrum.”

“I learned the history of this sport from my grandfather, I saw the history made by my father, and I was a competitor to some of the greatest drivers in the history of NASCAR,” said Petty.  “I’m excited to be a part of NBC’s return to NASCAR.  During this past year as a guest analyst on NASCAR AMERICA, I saw firsthand the commitment, energy and excitement that this team has for the sport that I love.  I can’t wait for the fans to see the same.”

The appointment of Petty follows previous NBC Sports NASCAR on-air announcements for analysts Jeff Burton, Steve Letarte, race announcer Rick Allen, pre- and post-race host Krista Voda, and reporters Marty Snider, Kelli Stavast, Mike Massaro and Dave Burns.

Petty is as much a product of racing as he is of his famous forebears: his grandfather, Lee Petty, and his father, Richard Petty, also known as “the King.”  He grew up in Level Cross, N.C., and places like Daytona, Charlotte and Talladega. For more than three decades as a driver, owner and media commentator, Kyle Petty has earned a reputation as a classy competitor and one of the greatest philanthropists that NASCAR has ever known.

Inspired by the vision of his late son Adam, Kyle and the Petty family partnered with the NASCAR community and corporate sponsors to create Victory Junction, a camp where more than 20,000 children with chronic or life-threatening illnesses have found hope, laughter and relief. For more than 20 years, Petty has hosted hundreds of NASCAR fans, drivers and motorcycle enthusiasts on his annual Kyle Petty Charity Ride Across America – raising more than $15 million for Victory Junction and children with chronic or life-threatening illnesses.

Over the course of a 30-year racing career, Petty amassed 173 Top-10 finishes. Throughout his racing years and since retirement in 2008, he has worked as an on-air commentator for several networks, including TNT, SPEED, ESPN, Turner, Fox Sports 1 and the Performance Racing Network.

On July 23, 2013, NASCAR and NBC Sports Group reached a comprehensive agreement that grants NBCUniversal exclusive rights to the final 20 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races, final 19 NASCAR XFINITY Series events, select NASCAR Regional & Touring Series events and other live content, beginning in 2015.

With this partnership, NBC’s 20 Sprint Cup race schedule includes a designation as the exclusive home to the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, when the elite national series races through its final 10 events of the season.  The Chase culminates with the season-ending championship event, which returns to network television in 2015 for the first time since 2009. Of NBC Sports Group’s 20 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series events, seven will be carried on NBC annually, with 13 airing on NBCSN. Four of NBC Sports Group’s 19 NASCAR XFINITY Series races will air on NBC, with 15 airing on NBCSN.

NASCAR AMERICA premiered in February, following Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s Daytona 500 victory and NBC Sports Group’s multi-platform coverage of the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi. The weekday 30-minute news and highlights program is hosted primarily by NASCAR on NBC lead race announcer Rick Allen and features regular appearances by NBC Sports NASCAR analysts Jeff Burton, Kyle Petty, reporters Marty Snider, Kelli Stavast, as well as guest analysts such as Bobby Labonte, Wally Dallenbach and Frank Stoddard.

– NBC SPORTS GROUP –