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Amazon reportedly wants to poach Eli, Peyton Manning from ESPN for Thursday Night Football

Matt Johnson
Amazon, Peyton Manning, Eli Manning
Saul Young/News Sentinel / USA TODAY NETWORK

As Amazon prepares to become an even bigger partner with the National Football League, the company is reportedly interested in snagging two of the NFL’s biggest former stars and delivering a blow to a competitor.

The NFL agreed to a deal to make Amazon Prime Video the home of Thursday Night Football beginning in the 2022 season. Since the deal became official, company executives have created a wish list of names to work in their TNF broadcast booth next season.

With Troy Aikman and Al Michaels reportedly Amazon’s top targets for the primary broadcasting jobs, it seems ESPN’s success with the “ManningCast” has caught the attention of its new rival in broadcasting NFL games.

According to Front Office Sports’ Michael McCarthy, Amazon Prime Video is eyeing the Manning brothers for a simulcast broadcast of TNF games in the future.

Omaha Productions, an entertainment company launched by Peyton, is under contract with ESPN through the 2023 season. With the tremendous success the ManningCast has found this year, pulling in both large audiences and marquee quests, there could soon be a bidding war for the Manning brothers.

ESPN will reportedly have some time to negotiate a new deal with Manning and Omaha Productions, likely in 2022. But with Amazon prepared to offer massive contracts to bring in the top NFL play-by-play announcers and color analysts, Peyton and Eli could be offered deals that would make them among the highest-paid sports broadcasters.

Peyton’s long-standing relationship with ESPN, including his show “Peyton’s Places”, could help the network keep the ManningCast for years to come. But it’s clear Disney and Amazon will be battling over top on-air talent in the coming years.