If you are tuning into the ESPN2 alternate Monday Night Football broadcast to watch the Las Vegas Raiders take on the Los Angeles Chargers in an AFC West showdown, you will not find the Manning brothers. You are likely asking yourself, “where is the Eli and Peyton Manning Monday Night Football broadcast in Week 4?
The answer is that Peyton and Eli Manning aren’t broadcasting all 17 NFL Monday Night Football games this season. Week 4 is one of their weeks off, and it won’t be the only one. Here is what you need to know about when the Manning Brothers will be on Monday Night Football.
The Manningcast is a success
The ESPN2 alternate Monday Night Football broadcast — often referred to as “Monday Night Manning” or the “Manningcast” — has grown each of the first three weeks of the NFL season.
During the Manning brothers’ Week 1 broadcast of the Raiders beating the Baltimore Ravens 33-27, around 800,000 people tuned in to watch Eli and Peyton Manning. The next week that number more than doubled. In Week 2, 1.86 million viewers tuned in to watch the Green Bay Packers thrash the Detroit Lions 35-17.
Week 3 drew an even bigger crowd with 1.89 viewers. These NFL fans watched Peyton, Eli, and friends discuss the Dallas Cowboys 41-21 beatdown of the Philadelphia Eagles.
That number might not seem like a significant improvement. Still, it’s impressive when you consider that the overall MNF viewership fell from 13.8 million total viewers in Week 2 to 12.9 million viewers in Week 3, per Pro Football Talk.
Following the percentages, roughly 5.2% of all MNF viewers watched the Manning brothers in Week 1. That audience share grew to 13.4 % in Week 2 and 14.6% in Week 3.
The Peyton and Eli alternate broadcast has become a bonified hit. Now, the question now is, can the show sustain its momentum through several weeks off?
What happened to the Eli and Peyton Manning Monday Night Football brodacast in Week 4
At the end of the Week 3 broadcast, the Manning brothers announced the date of their next Monday Night Football Manningcast. The show won’t be back until Week 7. The duo is taking three weeks off and won’t be back until the New Orleans Saints at Seattle Seahawks game on Monday, October 25.
From the outset of this project, Eli and Peyton Manning only committed to doing 10 shows this season. The initial announcement from ESPN/Disney PR said that the two signed on for three seasons (2021, 2022, 2023) and would do the 10-show run in each.
In addition to the Week 7 matchup, Peyton and Eli said they would also be on our TV sets for the Week 8 contest that pits Eli’s New York Giants against Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs.
However, neither the Manning brothers nor the network has announced which five of the remaining nine Monday Night Football games the Manning’s will be involved with after that.
Why are people watching the Eli and Peyton Manning alternate broadcast?
The reason that Eli and Peyton Manning are taking the football broadcasting world by storm is simple: they’re fun.
The NFL QBs, have known each other since Eli was born in 1981. This gives them a chemistry that is incredibly hard to find in the world of media. The effortlessly entertaining relationship — honed over years of being real brothers — is something that viewers haven’t seen on sports TV.
They also seamlessly and naturally blend entertainment and sports. Peyton and Eli have both hosted Saturday Night Live and starred in a host of commercials over the years. When you combine that with being two of the most cerebral signal-callers in NFL history, you get an infotainment mix the likes of which we’ve never seen.
One more reason the ESPN2 alternate broadcast is so entertaining is that it is gleefully unpolished. The Manning brothers cut each other off, sometimes struggle to communicate with guests (thanks Brett Favre’s internet), and occasionally they even throw it to a commercial break mid-sentence.
The duo is very green when it comes to hosting a TV broadcast. The younger Manning even flipped the viewers the double bird last week. He did so because he thought the production team could blur it out on the fly.
Much of this would be annoying in the hands of lesser hosts. But it just works for some reason with Peyton and Eli.
There is plenty of talk about whether the Manning brothers’ unique broadcast is the future of watching football. It probably isn’t, but there are surely lessons to take from it. For now, we should just enjoy it in the moment, even if that moment isn’t for another three weeks now.