Los Angeles Rams head coach Sean McVay (left) talks with Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin Nov 10, 2019; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Los Angeles Rams head coach Sean McVay (left) talks with Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin before the game at Heinz Field. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Last month, CBS Sports announced chairman Sean McManus would retire after 27 years in April of 2024. McManus will be succeeded by David Berson, the president of CBS Sports for the last decade, as the president and CEO of CBS Sports.

Since he’s been with the network for nearly three decades, McManus has been a part of many decisions to help shape how football, among other sports, has been broadcasted and perceived by audiences around the country. 

One of his most pivotal decisions was replacing Phil Simms with Tony Romo, alongside Jim Nantz on CBS’s lead NFL broadcast team. However you feel about Romo, and many have their opinions on the former Dallas Cowboys quarterback turned famed broadcaster, McManus certainly has an eye for what works and what doesn’t in the realm of broadcasting.

That’s why the comments he made about a couple of sitting head coaches and their prospects as broadcasters hold some weight to them. Making a recent appearance on the Marchand and Ourand Sports Media Podcast, McManus was asked who he’s identified as current NFL players that he thinks would be “really good in the broadcast booth.”

“There are people who have decided not to go into the industry, who I thought would be great,” McManus said. “Philip Rivers being one of them for sure, but I don’t really have a list. What happens is, when they come back to New York from doing a game, our producers and directors and talent will often recommend somebody, a player or coach, they met in the production meeting who would be good.

“I’ve always thought Mike Tomlin, if he ever wanted to do it, would be terrific,” McManus said. “Sean McVay, I think, would be terrific also.”

It’s interesting that McManus would bring up McVay, who has been a rumored target for a TV job since the end of the 2021 NFL season. That was until McVay told ESPN’s Adam Schefter that he was “not pursuing any television opportunities” and was “committed” to helping the Rams defend their Super Bowl title.

But even after turning down initial overtures, McVay continues to be in demand by networks looking to strengthen their NFL broadcasting lineup. At the beginning of 2023, when McVay’s head coaching future had some immediate doubts, TV networks reportedly tried again to obtain his services. Obviously to no avail, as he’s currently at the helm of the 2-2 Los Angeles Rams.

McVay discussed the interest around him recently, and said while it’s “flattering,” his focus is still on improving the Rams. At the same time, he wanted to make it clear that he hasn’t “run away from the fact that down the line or whenever that is, that’s something that I’ve been interested in”. But I want to be here right now, focus on that and that’s where I’m at.”

While McManus didn’t expand his answer on the Pittsburgh Steelers head coach, he did go into detail about how he was enthralled by Romo’s potential as a broadcaster. That dates back to a conversation he had during Super Bowl XLIX between the New England Patriots and Seattle Seahawks.

“I just asked, ‘Tony, how do you see the game tomorrow?’ And he, in an incredibly concise way, broke down the Seahawks’ defense, and what the Patriots needed to do to break that vaunted defense. We sort of talked for like five minutes,” McManus said. “I left and I said, ‘That guy’s gonna be the number one analyst at a network. I just hope it’s ours.'”

The fact that McManus saw it with Romo just goes to show that perhaps McVay and Tomlin will be the next great broadcasters. Whether that will be for CBS likely won’t be up to the outgoing McManus, as Tomlin doesn’t appear to be going anywhere and we don’t seem to know what McVay’s coaching future looks beyond this season.

[Marchand and Ourand Sports Media Podcast via The Street]

About Sam Neumann

Since the beginning of 2023, Sam has been a staff writer for Awful Announcing and The Comeback. A 2021 graduate of Temple University, Sam is a Charlotte native, who currently calls Greenville, South Carolina his home. He also has a love/hate relationship with the New York Mets and Jets.