NFL fans react to Amazon Thursday Night Football debut

Amazon Prime Video is the exclusive home of Thursday Night Football, beginning with the 2022 NFL season (TNF games have been simulcast on Fox in the past, but now the games are exclusively on Amazon; the local markets of the teams involved in a game will still carry the game on free over-the-air television).

The regular-season Amazon TNF debut isn’t until Sept. 15, when the Los Angeles Chargers take on the Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium.

But Thursday night’s preseason game between the San Francisco 49ers and Houston Texans served as the official debut of the Amazon TNF broadcast.

Here’s a look at Amazon’s TNF studio team — which includes Ryan Fitzpatrick — and set on the sideline at NRG Stadium:

Amazon’s #TNFonPrime set.

— Awful Announcing (@awfulannouncing) August 25, 2022

And here’s a look at the Amazon TNF scorebug:

There’s your TNF scorebug.

— Ken Fang — Get your shots!!!! (@fangsbites) August 26, 2022

The broadcast features Al Michaels (previously NBC’s Sunday Night Football announcer) on play-by-play and Kirk Herbstreit (who’s the top college football analyst for ESPN) as the color commentator. Kaylee Hartung is the sideline reporter.

🎙 Al Michaels (pbp) with @KirkHerbstreit (analyst) on debut of Amazon Prime Video Thursday Night Football package #NFL #TNF #ThursdayNightFootball

— Announcer Schedules (@announcerskeds) August 26, 2022

Your announcing team for Amazon’s Thursday Night Football: Al Michaels, Kirk Herbstreit and Kaylee Hartung.

— Ken Fang — Get your shots!!!! (@fangsbites) August 25, 2022

Here’s an example of the broadcast in action on a Texans touchdown and extra point, to go with replays:

Here’s a look at the Amazon TNF broadcast in action on a Texans TD and XP (and replays) before going to commercial. #TNFonPrime

— Awful Announcing (@awfulannouncing) August 26, 2022

And here are more examples of the graphics and features of the broadcast:

The overall look for @NFLonPrime is classic linear. Sleek, bright, clean, elevated. NFL-worthy.

Polish up the down-and-distance a bit on the scorebug, but otherwise its 👌.

Picture quality is good for me. The music slaps, too.

— Brandon Costa (@SVG_Brandon) August 26, 2022

The NFL world has had a lot to say about the Amazon TNF broadcast debut, and most fans have been impressed. Here’s a sampling of the reaction on Twitter:

First impression of Amazon TNF:

If you weren’t a sports media nerd and walked into a friend’s house with the game on, you’d have no idea this was a maiden voyage.

IMO not sticking out in a bad way is a win and they are at a minimum already over that hurdle. It’s a good start.

— Ben Koo (@bkoo) August 26, 2022

Nice chemistry between Al Michaels and Kirk Herbstreit. Even though this is their first game together, it sounds like they have been together for several seasons.

— Ken Fang — Get your shots!!!! (@fangsbites) August 26, 2022

I know that this is exactly what Amazon was shooting for, but so far the production for TNF feels like a cross between SNF and the A-crew for CFB on ESPN.

And I mean that in the best possible way. This has been a very good first outing.

— Brett Kollmann (@BrettKollmann) August 26, 2022

Amazon Prime’s NFL coverage so far…

Pregame: A
Score bug: A+
Broadcast team: A+

It actually feels like Amazon and not just another TNF game from NFLN with Fox/CBS/NBC.

— Andrew Hammond (@ahammFreePress) August 26, 2022

As a new broadcast partner, Prime Video has already accomplished their biggest task, give the big game feel. Al Michaels and Kirk Herbstreit provide instant credibility to their TNF coverage. @NFLonPrime

— Tyler Jones (@TylerJonesLive) August 26, 2022

Ryan Fitzpatrick is every bit as good on Thursday Night Football pregame as we thought he’d be.

— Bruce Nolan (@BruceExclusive) August 25, 2022

Good start for Amazon Prime with their first NFL TNF broadcast tonight of 49ers/Texans preseason and a good dry run before it starts for real in September.

Al Michaels and Kirk Herbstreit give it legitimacy. Ryan Fitzpatrick and Richard Sherman could be good studio analysts too.

— Ian Cameron (@bobano) August 26, 2022

[Photo Credit: Amazon Prime Video]

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