Notable and quotable ...
"The Falcons are starting to find themselves a little bit. They are going through a bit of a rebuilding process. A little bit of a "who are we" process right now. I've seen it happen before, you get late confidence with a new coach, and all of a sudden, maybe you can get on a bit of a roll." -– Cris Collinsworth on Falcons, who have won two of their last three games.
"The Falcons are in this game more than people think. The Colts aren't healthy right now, especially on the offensive side of the ball. If the Colts don't get some of their offensive weapons back and DeAngelo Hall can slow down Reggie Wayne, the Falcons have a good chance to be in the game." – Steve Mariucci.
NFL Network begins its second year airing the exclusive Thursday and Saturday night football primetime package. Beginning on Thanksgiving night, NFL Network presents eight games in the key stretch of the season as teams jockey for playoff berths and seeding.
NFL Network has assembled an award-winning team to cover its "Run to the Playoffs" slate. The insightful, 2006 Sports Emmy Award double winner Cris Collinsworth returns to provide game analysis. An eight-time Sports Emmy winner, Collinsworth earned 2006 Sports Emmys for his commentary on NFL Network games and for his studio analysis on HBO and NBC. Collinsworth is joined by play-by-play announcer Bryant Gumbel, a 23-time Emmy Award winner who has earned honors for his work in the news and sports fields. He also hosts HBO's Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel, which has garnered an additional 19 Emmys. Previously, he had a 15-year stay as host of NBC's Today show during which he interviewed world leaders and Super Bowl heroes and has covered foreign wars, elections, international summits and Presidential inaugurations. Game producer Mark Loomis returns and is joined by 14-time Emmy Award winner Craig Janoff, NFL Network's new game director.
Rich Eisen hosts NFL Network's Total Access on Location two-hour pregame show. Eisen, a 2006 Sports Emmy nominee in the Studio Host category, is joined on the set by Steve Mariucci, a former NFL head coach with the San Francisco 49ers and Detroit Lions who also served as Brett Favre's quarterback coach in Green Bay; Marshall Faulk, who won a Super Bowl XXXIV ring with the Rams, earned 2000 NFL MVP honors and three Offensive Player of the Year awards (1999-2001) and has been selected to seven Pro Bowls; and Deion Sanders, a two-time Super Bowl winner who was 1994 Defensive Player of the Year and an eight-time Pro Bowler who holds the NFL record with 18 career return touchdowns. Coverage also includes reporter Adam Schefter, who spent 15 years covering the Denver Broncos for multiple newspapers, earned a pair of Colorado Sportswriter of the Year honors (2002-03) and served as president of the Pro Football Writers of America (2000-02). Coordinating producer Aaron Owens returns alongside director Jen Love on the pregame, halftime and postgame shows. Eric Weinberger is executive producer of NFL Network.