Kirk Herbstreit and Al Michaels Screen grab: Thursday Night Football

Kirk Herbstreit is one of the best analysts in all of football and Al Michaels is an undisputed legend.

But when it comes to their pairing on Thursday Night Football on Prime Video, something isn’t clicking.

The awkward dynamic between the duo of Amazon broadcasters was perhaps best exemplified by the closing moments of Thursday night’s matchup between the Detroit Lions and the Green Bay Packers. As head coaches Dan Campbell and Matt LaFleur met at midfield for a relatively rushed handshake, Herbstreit attempted to ask Michaels if he was sold on the Lions following their convincing 34-20 victory, which led to the following exchange:

Michaels: Quick little acknowledgment there amongst the coaches.

Herbstreit: You buying in?

Michaels: Am I buying in? I don’t know.

Herbstreit: I am

Michaels: Oh, buying into Detroit? I thought you meant buying into that flyby acknowledgment.

Commentary on social media regarding the lack of chemistry between Herbstreit and Michaels hasn’t been hard to find in recent weeks.

To be fair, Kirk Herbstreit and Al Michaels haven’t had the most exciting games to call with relative blowouts in each of the last two weeks leaving them with more time than usual to focus on anything but the game in front of them. The only problem? Amazon’s upcoming slate of Thursday night games leaves plenty to be desired, starting with next week’s matchup between the Washington Commanders and the Chicago Bears. Michaels has never hid his feelings when he’s been disappointed with the quality of Thursday games and that may be the case again soon.

While plenty can change in short order in the NFL, Thursday Night Football might not have a game between two contending teams until Nov. 16 when the Baltimore Ravens host the Cincinnati Bengals. Perhaps Amazon will get some help from Taylor Swift on Oct. 12 when the Kansas City Chiefs host the Denver Broncos — although such a spotlight might only amplify the awkwardness of Amazon’s broadcast pairing.

[Awful Announcing on X]

About Ben Axelrod

Ben Axelrod is a veteran of the sports media landscape, having most recently worked for NBC's Cleveland affiliate, WKYC. Prior to his time in Cleveland, he covered Ohio State football and the Big Ten for outlets including Cox Media Group, Bleacher Report, Scout and Rivals.