During Thursday's game between the Vikings and Eagles, Al Michaels welcomed viewers to Veterans Stadium, which was blown up in 2004. Photo Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports Dec 29, 2022; Nashville, Tennessee, USA; Amazon Prime sportscaster Al Michaels walks on the field before the game between the Tennessee Titans and the Dallas Cowboys at Nissan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

It was reported on Wednesday that Al Michaels will not be a part of NBC’s playoff coverage.

The New York Post‘s Andrew Marchand revealed that Michaels is not included in any of the network’s playoff plans, which will see NBC airing three games during the opening Wild Card weekend. NBC’s Sunday Night Football team of Mike Tirico, Cris Collinsworth, and sideline reporter Melissa Stark will cover two of these games. The third game will be handled by NBC’s No.1 college team of Noah Eagle, Todd Blackledge, and sideline reporter Kathryn Tappen.

Marchand acknowledged on his Marchand and Ourand Sports Media Podcast that more was at play here, as there’s been a fracture in the relationship between Michaels and NBC for quite some time now.

“I think that’s what’s lost in all of this, is at the end with NBC, there weren’t good relations,” Marchand said. “They had promised (Mike) Tirico the job. Tirico kept patiently waiting for the job, and Al kept trying to keep the job for a long time. And so, they gave him the emeritus title, but they never really were able to explain what that meant. They did that with Bob Costas and Tom Brokaw, who are kind of more associated with NBC. They were going to be able to explain how they were going to be used. With Al, it was alright. Well, they’re still paying him, apparently, but what is he going to do? He did the one playoff game. This year, he’s not doing the playoff game.”

Marchand stated that he talked to Michaels back in November. He didn’t report that Michaels was in limbo until now because the legendary broadcaster is known for being a “fighter” who will do everything in his power to try and change the situation.

“It’s in my deal,” Michaels told Marchand. “Where are you hearing that from? That’s part of my deal. Are you hearing something that I’m not hearing?”

In recent years, Michaels has been criticized for appearing unenthusiastic during his broadcasts. However, despite this criticism, he has confirmed returning to the Amazon broadcast booth for the 2024 season. It is currently the final year of Michaels’s contract with the company.

Michaels’ absence from NBC’s playoffs caps a tumultuous year for the veteran broadcaster, leaving the future of his relationship with the network uncertain.

[Andrew Marchand]

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.