Maria Taylor Becomes 1st Female Host of NBC's 'Football Night in America'

    • She succeeds Mike Tirico, Dan Patrick and Bob Costas.
    • Former ESPN host jumped to NBC last year.

“Dream Come True.”

That’s what Maria Taylor of NBC Sports tweeted after she was named the first female lead host of “Football Night in America.”

Taylor debuted on the show as co-host with Mike Tirico last year. Tirico is moving up to play-by-play announcer of “Sunday Night Football,” replacing Al Michaels, who left for Amazon Prime Video’s “Thursday Night Football.”

Taylor succeeds some big sports media names who’ve previously hosted FNIA, including Tirico, Dan Patrick and Bob Costas.

“Maria is the perfect choice to carry the legacy forward of anchoring the most-watched studio show in sports,” said NBC executive producer Sam Flood.

The anchor and host joined NBC in 2021 after a tumultuous contract negotiation with ESPN. 

Over the last year she’s hosted many of the world’s biggest sporting events, including the Super Bowl LVI pregame show, the Beijing Olympics, and the Tokyo Olympics. She was named one of 2021’s “Most Powerful Women in Sports” by Adweek.

Her promotion was cheered by current and former colleagues at NBC and ESPN.

“Fantastic!” tweeted Super Bowl-winning coach turned NBC analyst Tony Dungy. “I am looking forward to working with you and helping fans get ready for [SNF] this season!”

NBC’s FNIA averaged 7.1 million viewers last season, up 18% from the previous year. NBC’s SNF has ranked as the No. 1 show in primetime for a record 11 years in a row.