EVOLUTION OF A PREGAME
SEPT. 29, 1957: FIRST 15-minute pregame, entitled PRO FOOTBALL KICKOFF, with Bud Palmer as host.
SEPT. 28, 1958: FIRST REGULARLY SCHEDULED pregame...Johnny Lujack hosts PRO FOOTBALL KICKOFF, seen every other week, alternating with Jim McKay’s SPORTS PAGE.
SEPT. 17, 1961: FIRST REMOTE 15-minute pregame...FIRST OF ITS KIND on network sports television, PRO FOOTBALL KICKOFF originates from stadiums around the country with a comprehensive look at all NFL games....PLAYER OF THE WEEK named for FIRST TIME.
APRIL 17, 1964: Frank Gifford hosts NFL REPORT...Title changes that season to THE NFL TODAY...POSTGAME BEGINS FOR FIRST TIME, called PRO FOOTBALL REPORT.
SEPTEMBER 1967: THE NFL TODAY expands to a 30-MINUTE format preceding game coverage.
SEPT. 20, 1970: THE NFL TODAY signs INDUSTRY-PIONEERING WOMEN...Marjorie Margolies produces and reports features for THE NFL TODAY...Actress Carole Howey reports.
JAN. 16, 1972: A FORERUNNER to modern pre-Super Bowl shows, CBS presents two one-hour documentaries preceding Super Bowl VI.
SEPTEMBER 1973: THE NFL TODAY begins originating from CBS’s New York City studios and includes reports from stadiums around the country.
SEPT. 15, 1974: THE NFL TODAY debuts NEW THREE-SEGMENT FORMAT...HIGHLIGHTS of day’s games and COMMENTARY, special FEATURES shot during the week, and third segment covering day’s sports news...SCORES and HIGHLIGHTS at halftime.
1975: THE NFL TODAY begins complex process of producing THREE SEPARATE LIVE PRE-GAME, halftime and post-game programs for 1:00 PM, 2:00 PM and 4:00 PM games. For FIRST TIME, musical pieces are produced for NFL coverage.
JAN. 18, 1976: CBS broadcasts Super Bowl X with a NEW 90-MINUTE PREGAME -- SUPER BOWL SUNDAY SPECIAL.
NOV. 7, 1977: THE NFL TODAY wins Sports Emmy Award as OUTSTANDING LIVE SPORTS SERIES for 1976.
AUG. 27, 1978: THE NFL TODAY premieres for 15th season with NEW LOOK...At start of its fifth year from CBS Broadcast Center in New York, Jayne Kennedy (replaces Phyllis George for first of two years) joins Brent Musburger and Irv Cross, along with Jimmy “The Greek” Snyder...Jack Whitaker commentates.
1978: THE NFL TODAY wins second Sports Emmy Award for OUTSTANDING LIVE SPORTS SERIES...THE SUPER BOWL TODAY captures Emmy Award for OUTSTANDING INDIVIDUAL ACHIEVEMENT IN SPORTS PROGRAMMING (Engineering/Supervision/Technical Direction/Electronic Camerawork.)
1979: THE NFL TODAY becomes FIRST STUDIO SHOW TO HOST ALL PLAYOFF GAMES FROM GAME SITES.
1980: THE NFL TODAY wins two technical Sports Emmy Awards for OUTSTANDING INDIVIDUAL ACHIEVEMENT.
1981: THE NFL TODAY wins technical Emmy Award for ASSOCIATE DIRECTION/VIDEOTAPING EDITING.
FEB. 11, 1983: Phyllis George receives 10th annual Jack Quinlan Award for SPORTS BROADCASTING EXCELLENCE in 1982.
JAN. 22, 1984: FIRST TIME SUPER BOWL TODAY devotes TWO HOURS to pre-game coverage, with 11 broadcasters, 13 feature and remote producers and four directors.
1985: THE NFL TODAY DEVOTES ENTIRE 30 MINUTES TO ISSUE of “THE NFL AT A CROSSROADS.”
1987: Strike season coverage includes CBS SPORTS REPORTERS AT EVERY NFL GAME and several EXPANDED VERSIONS of THE NFL TODAY to cover issues.
1989: THE NFL TODAY wins Sports Emmy Award for OUTSTANDING STUDIO SHOW.
SEPT. 9, 1990: THE NFL TODAY kicks off with ALL-NEW TALENT LINEUP of Greg Gumbel, Terry Bradshaw, Pat O’Brien and Lesley Visser...NEW STATE-OF-THE-ART SET...360-degree, two-story, largely mobile set...174 televisions, separate program islands for various studio segments, neon lights, staircase, 24 motion message panels and two 43-inch television screens.
APRIL 9, 1991: THE NFL TODAY wins Emmy Award for TECHNICAL TEAM STUDIO, SUPER BOWL TODAY for GRAPHIC DESIGN for 1990.
APRIL 21, 1992: THE NFL TODAY wins Emmy Award for TECHNICAL TEAM STUDIO.
APRIL 14, 1993: THE NFL TODAY wins Emmy Award for PROGRAM AREA: STUDIO SHOW in only its third year with new talent lineup...Show now totals 12 Sports Emmy Awards in its history.
SEPTEMBER 1993: THE NFL TODAY begins 30th season overall...holds distinction of highest-rated program in its time slot for past 18 years, longer than any other program on television.
SEPTEMBER 6, 1998: After 1,687 days since the last broadcast of THE NFL TODAY, host Jim Nantz, welcomed back viewers to CBS for its coverage of THE NFL ON CBS. Nantz was joined by newcomers Marcus Allen, Brent Jones, George Seifert and reporter Bonnie Bernstein in the studio.
APRIL 1998: THE NFL TODAY wins Emmy Award for OPENS/TEASES for its Thanksgiving Day tease of the Pittsburgh Steelers at Detroit Lions game...This marks the show’s 13th Emmy Award in its history.
SEPTEMBER 1999: Randy Cross, Jerry Glanville and Craig James join host Jim Nantz as analysts on THE NFL TODAY. Feature reporters are Marcus Allen, Bonnie Bernstein and Armen Keteyian.
SEPTEMBER 2000: THE NFL TODAY studio show moves from the CBS Broadcast Center to a new indoor-outdoor studio located in the GM Building on Fifth Avenue giving fans the opportunity to participate in the show live from the streets of New York and also watch through the studio’s glass-enclosed walls.
SEPTEMBER 2000: Former New Orleans Saints and Chicago Bears head coach Mike Ditka joins THE NFL TODAY as an analyst joining host Jim Nantz, Randy Cross, Jerry Glanville and Craig James in the studio.
SEPTEMBER 2001: Craig James moves to game analyst as host Jim Nantz, along with analysts Mike Ditka, Randy Cross and Jerry Glanville sit at the desk of the THE NFL TODAY studio. NFL TODAY feature reporter Marcus Allen and contributor Lesley Visser are joined by Jill Arrington as a reporter for the studio show.
SEPTEMBER 2001: Former two-sport star Deion Sanders, considered by many to be one of the NFL’s all-time best at his position, joins THE NFL TODAY as a feature reporter/contributor.
SEPTEMBER 2002: Former NFL quarterbacks Dan Marino and Boomer Esiason join Jim Nantz and Deion Sanders as studio analysts for THE NFL TODAY. Randy Cross moves to game analyst.
SEPTEMBER 2004: Greg Gumbel, who hosted THE NFL TODAY from 1990-93, returns to the anchor’s seat to host THE NFL TODAY alongside Dan Marino, Boomer Esiason, and the newest addition to the show, Shannon Sharpe. Jim Nantz, who hosted the show for the previous six years, moves to call play-by-play on the Network’s No. 1 announce team with Phil Simms and reporter Lesley Visser. Bonnie Bernstein returns to her original role as feature reporter for THE NFL TODAY with Marcus Allen, and Armen Keteyian contributes.
SEPTEMBER 2005: After five years of broadcasting THE NFL TODAY studio show at the outdoor set at the GM Building on Fifth Avenue in New York City, the show moves back indoors full-time at the CBS Broadcast Center. Lesley Visser returns as a feature reporter.
SEPTEMBER 2005: THE NFL TODAY once again leads the way as it arrives first to the field with live in-depth game analysis, up-to-the-minute game information, player moves, match-ups, injury reports, statistics, weather updates and possible pre-game player and/or coach interviews with its new segment FIRST TO THE FIELD originating from each regional remote game broadcast during the last 10 minutes of THE NFL TODAY.
SEPTEMBER 2006: James Brown returns to CBS Sports as the host of THE NFL TODAY alongside Dan Marino, Boomer Esiason and Shannon Sharpe.
SEPTEMBER 2006: THE NFL TODAY moves into a totally reconstructed, state-of-the-art studio that boasts a bi-level set that includes a 6mm LED screen that is 6 feet high by 14 feet wide, 24 flat screen HD monitors, holographic screens and an ergonomically designed desk that enables better conversation and interaction between the host and analysts.
SEPTEMBER 2007: Former Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Bill Cowher joins James Brown, Dan Marino, Boomer Esiason and Shannon Sharpe as a studio analyst for THE NFL TODAY.
SEPTEMBER 2011: A new 360-degree set design is unveiled for THE NFL TODAY with new interview and demonstration areas. New technology added includes HD projector monitors, a 103” HD monitor, LED lighting and photo imagery of the history of THE NFL ON CBS and THE NFL TODAY throughout the set.
SEPTEMBER 2012: Jason La Canfora joins James Brown, Dan Marino, Bill Cowher, Shannon Sharpe and Boomer Esiason on THE NFL TODAY as the NFL Insider.
SEPTEMBER 2013: Continuing its aggressive expansion of programming around CBS Sports’ marquee properties, CBS Sports Network launches THAT OTHER PREGAME SHOW (TOPS), a new weekly Sunday football studio program debuting Sunday, Sept. 8 (9:00 AM-1:00 PM, ET). “TOPS” will be hosted by Adam Schein along with 11-year NFL veteran Bart Scott, long-time Oakland Raiders executive Amy Trask, CBS Sports Radio’s Brandon Tierney, CBSSports.com fantasy analyst Nathan Zegura and LEAD OFF’s Allie LaForce reporting.
SEPTEMBER 2014: Newly-retired Atlanta Falcons and Kansas City Chiefs tight end Tony Gonzalez and Bart Scott, an analyst on TOPS last year, join James Brown, Boomer Esiason and Bill Cowher as studio analysts for THE NFL TODAY. Former NFL Official Mike Carey joins THE NFL ON CBS and THE NFL TODAY as the NFL Rules Expert.