Top: The final score from the highest scoring game in MNF history (Oct. 17, 1983); Bottom: The current MNF booth team, ESPN's Ron Jaworski, Mike Tirico and Jon Gruden
Monday Night Football, the longest-running and most successful prime-time sports series in television history, celebrates its 40th season this year. More than a football game, Monday Night Football has become an American institution, documenting some of the most memorable moments in National Football League history, combining journalism with dashes of entertainment as part of its innovative and groundbreaking production.
The Packers made their MNF debut in 1970 with a 22-20 win over the San Diego Chargers and have since accumulated 26 MNF wins on their resume. Monday, the team will appear in its 56th Monday Night Football game as quarterback Aaron Rodgers leads the Packers against Ray Lewis and the Baltimore Ravens. Monday's game marks the second of two Monday Night Football appearances for the Packers this season, and the only MNF home game this year at Lambeau Field, where the familiar Hank Williams Jr. anthem will get Green and Gold fans "Ready for Some Football" at the "frozen tundra."
ESPN, the NFL and the Packers will also celebrate the 40th season of Monday Night Football with the Chalk Talk Series kickoff event at The Legends Club at Lambeau Field on Monday afternoon. Some 300 invited guests are expected to attend, including local civic and business leaders as well as sponsors and fans. The event will feature a star lineup of Packers alumni, including Antonio Freeman, William Henderson and Desmond Howard (also an ESPN college football analyst), who will take part in panel discussions and question-and-answer sessions. Top executives, including Packers President and CEO Mark Murphy -- and other team executives, are also expected to attend.
Created by sports broadcasting pioneer and former ABC Sports President Roone Arledge, Monday Night Football has sought to provide fans the best viewing experience from play-action to commentating. While only eight to 10 cameras were used to produces the games in the 1970s, today's coverage includes isolated shots; multiple high-speed cameras and POV cameras such as Skycam, which offers a birds-eye view of the action; instant replay; elaborate state-of-the-art graphics; up-to-the-minute statistics as well as little-known facts from the past; reverse angle replays and the "super slow-motion" camera; the Sports Emmy Award Winning virtual "1st & 10" first-down line; ESPN Axis Technology that creates three-dimensional "virtual" replays; EA Sports Virtual Playbook and more.
Today, the MNF booth team includes ESPN's Mike Tirico, Ron Jaworski and Jon Gruden, along with reporters Suzy Kolber and Michele Tafoya. Also on site at the games, providing pre- and postgame reports: host Stuart Scott with analysts Matt Millen and Steve Young. Additionally, ESPN's Monday Night Football coverage provides fans with multi-platform content throughout the day, including coverage on ESPN, ESPN Radio, ESPN.com, ESPN Deportes and ESPN's pregame (Monday Night Countdown), halftime and postgame (SportsCenter Special) shows with host Chris Berman and analysts Cris Carter, Mike Ditka, Tom Jackson, Keyshawn Johnson, senior NFL analyst Chris Mortensen and NFL Insider Adam Schefter.
Monday Night Football Green Bay Packers 'Did You Know?'
- Monday's game marks 38 consecutive Monday Night Football appearances by the Green Bay Packers (1993-present)
- The Packers are 26-28 and one tie (14-14, 1971, against the Lions) all-time on Monday Night Football;
- The Packers are 11-7 at home in Monday Night Football games, excluding a tie (14-14, 1971, against the Lions);
- The Packers are 0-2 against the Ravens in Monday Night Football appearances. The last time the two met on MNF, the Ravens won 48-3 at M&T Bank Stadium, Monday, Dec. 19, 2005.
- The Green Bay Packers defeated the Washington Redskins 48-47 in the highest scoring game in MNF history on Oct. 17, 1983. The teams combined for 1,025 total yards, including 771 yards from quarterbacks Lynn Dickey (GB) and Joe Theismann (WAS). Skins kicker Mark Moseley missed a potential game-winning 39-yard field goal with three seconds to play.
- In one the most heartfelt and emotional of Monday Night Football games, Green Bay Packers quarterback Brett Favre puts forth a magical performance on Dec. 22, 2003. Playing with a heavy heart just a day after learning his father had passed away, Favre fights back tears to throw for 399 yards and four touchdowns. On a night when even the Oakland Raiders fans are cheering for him, Favre led the Packers to an inspiring 41-7 victory.
- Green Bay wide receiver Antonio Freeman cements his place in Monday Night Football history with a fantastic sliding catch on Nov. 6, 2000. With the Packers and Vikings tied at 20 in overtime, Green Bay faces a long third down. With no one open, quarterback Brett Favre simply lofts the ball in Freeman's direction. Minnesota's Cris Dishman tips the ball, which goes right to the sliding Freeman, who gains control, gets up and scampers into the end zone as the entire audience can't believe what it witnesses. Even announcer Al Michaels is surprised, asking, "He did what?" as the Packers celebrate the win."