Monday, January 28, 2013

Super Bowl Week Really Begins with Media Day, When NFL Network Adds PR Insider to Its Team

Team arrivals have been chronicled and the initial news conferences have been completed.

Sports-talk radio shows broadcast all day long Monday from New Orleans -- with ESPN and CBS Sports Radio Network housed in separate areas while some smaller networks and stations from across the country made their home at a sparse Radio Row.

Business picks up Tuesday, though. That's when the teams, media members covering the Super Bowl and the usual mix of the unusual takes center stage for Media Day.

While the on-field sessions for coaches and players have been somewhat unproductive for working media members for years, the circus-like atmosphere works for the NFL because it makes news and provides a spectacle. It even attracts a crowd, with the general public again having access to watch from the stands this year.

Longtime NFL reporters might complain about the process, but they'll be there. They'll be joined by small pools or reporters (among them many from network TV affiliates across the country making the trek to New Orleans just for the week, especially Media Day). Of course, they'll be joined by correspondents from late-night television shows and reporters from across the world. All told during Super Bowl week, from the days leading up to the game to the game itself, the league will issue more than 5,200 media credentials.

So, Tuesday kicks things into high gear for news organizations of any size and whatever focus.

Not surprisingly, NFL Network plans four-and-a-half hours of live coverage, including what might be a sports TV first -- an NFL PR pro's perspective on Media Day and the week leading up to the game.

NFL Network has added Rich Dalyrmple, the Dallas Cowboys' vice president of public relations/communications, who has more than 20 years of experience, to its on-air team for the day to provide analysis and insight into what the public relations staffs, coaches and players are facing during the week leading up to the Super Bowl.

Amid the loud mess of media madness that happens on Media Day, the move to add the accomplished and respected Dalyrmple might get overlooked, and he might not get a lot of airtime. Still, he should provide in interesting and welcome behind-the-scenes perspective.

It's a nice move that will not take away from NFL Network's proven Media Day process that includes hosts Rich Eisen and Melissa Stark, along with Michael Irvin, Warren Sapp and roving reporter Deion Sanders.

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