DALLAS — Add CBS to the list of NFL television rightsholders that will have a different cast on their main NFL studio shows this fall.
SI.com has learned Tony Gonzalez is leaving The NFL Today after three years with the network. CBS hired Gonzalez—a soon-to-be Pro Football Hall of Famer who played 17 seasons at tight end with Kansas City and Atlanta—in February 2014 as an analyst. The move then was part of a larger rebrand of the show, with the network opting not to bring back Dan Marino and Shannon Sharpe. Gonzalez said he made the decision, and cited family and travel as his main reasons.
“I have had an incredible and rewarding three years at CBS and wish it could be more, but traveling to New York each week during the season is not what is best for my family at this time,” Gonzalez said in a statement provided by CBS Sports. “While I hope to remain in broadcasting I will look to do so in the L.A. area. I can't thank CBS enough for their support.”
“We have very much enjoyed having Tony as a member of the CBS team for the past three years and we thank him for his hard work as he developed into a strong analyst,” said a CBS Sports spokesperson. “We respect Tony's decision as he prioritizes family and we wish him nothing but the best.”
As for a replacement for Gonzalez, CBS should think seriously about moving former Raiders CEO Amy Trask onto its top show on a full-time basis. Trask has been a regular on the CBS Sports Network Sunday morning NFL pregame show, That Other Pregame Show.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported that both Fox and CBS are interested in Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo should he retire. If Romo opted for television, it would be highly unlikely he’d be interested in a studio role at CBS over the prospect of calling games.
Earlier this month, ESPN announced that Sam Ponder would serve as the new host of Sunday NFL Countdown, one of the many personnel changes for that show over the past 12 months.