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Tom Jones' Two Cents

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Jon Gruden already a huge hit on TV



Gruden Jon Gruden has been a full-time TV analyst on ESPN's Monday Night Football for less than a month and he's already drawing rave and nearly unprecedented reviews for his work. You have to go back to the early television days of John Madden to find a football analyst who has been this well received so early in his broadcasting career.

"I've never seen anybody bring the passion and bring the desire to be terrific as Jon has,'' said partner Mike Tirico, who does play-by-play on Monday Night Football.

Co-analyst Ron Jaworski said, "I'm so thrilled to have Jon Gruden in the booth. I've learned more football in the past month than the last 10 years.''

ESPN senior coordinating producer Jay Rothman said he first noticed Gruden's attention to detail during production meetings whenever the Gruden-coached Bucs were on Monday Night Football. Then he paid particular attention when Gruden worked for the NFL Network during the draft.

"I thought this guy could be a superstar in the business,'' Rothman said.

When analyst Tony Kornheiser decided to leave Monday Night Football, Rothman knew Gruden was the perfect fit -- "a no-brainer,'' he said.

And Gruden has lived up to all of ESPN's expectations, easily sliding into the empty chair and making what Jaworski called, "a seamless transition''

"I haven't seen anybody,'' Tirico said, "who is a rookie (in this business) who has understood the mechanics in a week or two.''

[Last modified: Monday, June 14, 2010 2:43pm]


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