Amazon Prime Video is targeting Pat McAfee to create an alternate “McAfee-Cast” to rival Peyton and Eli Manning’s “ManningCast,” sources tell Front Office Sports.
The 35-year-old former Indianapolis Colts punter is one of the busiest talents in sports media, hosting his eponymous weekday show on SiriusXM and YouTube and performing as both a wrestler and color commentator in the WWE.
There’s no deal yet with Amazon. It remains to be seen if McAfee could fit a weekly TNF assignment in with his other gigs.
But a TNF MegaCast would fit what McAfee’s looking for, said sources.
McAfee, who stepped into the ring as a special guest at WrestleMania 38, could shoot a free-wheeling “McAfee-Cast” from his home base in Indianapolis, without traveling to the site of TNF games.
He’d be the unquestioned star — without having to play the kooky sideline reporter in support of TNF’s lead broadcast team of Al Michaels and Kirk Herbstreit.
So-called “MegaCasts” are all the rage with Peyton Manning’s Omaha Productions and ESPN winning a Sports Emmy this week for their alternate broadcast of “Monday Night Football.”
Turner Sports used its popular “Inside the NBA” team of Charles Barkley, Shaquille O’Neal, Kenny Smith, and Ernie Johnson to offer an alternate telecast of the 2022 NBA All-Star Game.
In late February, McAfee confirmed on his show that he’s had talks with Amazon executives. But he noted that his work schedule would make traveling to different stadiums’ broadcast booths impossible.
The Amazon talks could be part of shifting his weekday FanDuel-sponsored show to Prime Video, according to the New York Post.
“I can’t call games. Not yet,” said McAfee at the time. “Have to be done with this show to call games. Because that’s like a 3-day, 4-day thing.”
McAfee has first-hand experience with MegaCasts. He joined the Manning brothers during their alternate telecast of MNF’s Week 2 on ESPN2. McAfee “stole the show,” according to Sporting News, regaling viewers with memories of gambling with former teammate Peyton Manning.
Amazon will pay the NFL $1 billion a year to serve as the exclusive home of TNF through 2033.
“I really believe that Amazon Prime’s going to change the way people watch football,” said NFL commissioner Roger Goodell at a recent event. “Amazon’s platform is going to allow us to do things that we’ve only dreamed about to date.”
Amazon declined comment.