Fox Sports has picked up another ESPN commentator as it continues to transform its NFL game coverage, The Post has learned.
Super Bowl champion Jonathan Vilma has decided to leave ESPN / ABC and will sign with Fox to be an NFL game analyst, according to sources. Vilma is likely to work with Kenny Albert on Sundays in the fall.
In addition to ESPN’s Vilma signing, Fox has chosen three other ESPN members. Up-and-coming player-by-player Adam Amin will be in the roles of Fox in the NFL and MLB. Meanwhile, FS1 will bring Emmanuel Acho to his morning sports talk shows, and Fox News / Fox Nation is expected to take over current ESPN Radio talk show host Will Cain. Fox has yet to officially confirm any of the moves.
In the wake of the recession in the economy that has greatly impacted Disney and ESPN, the company has tightened its wallet in the negotiations, but wanted to keep Vilma and may even have offered a little more money than Fox. The compromise was believed to be ESPN’s was for more work dates than Fox, making the difference in money less.
Vilma, 38, strongly considered staying with Disney, as she enjoyed her role in the ABC pre-college soccer game, where her co-analyst was Mark Sanchez, and her appearances on ESPN shows like “Get Up” during the week. . Ultimately, NFL game analyst jobs don’t show up as often, and Vilma will have room to grow on Fox, as she has shown that she can do studies and can now expand to games.
Albert previously worked with Ronde Barber. Fox did not renew Barber’s contract last year. Fox likes Albert’s experience, as Vilma will be a rookie NFL analyst.
Vilma was the Jets’ first-round pick in 2004 and became a three-time Pro Bowler. He won a Super Bowl with the Saints and was also part of the University of Miami national championship team in 2001, which is considered one of the best varsity teams in history. He was implicated by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell in the Bountygate scandal, but then his one-year suspension in 2012 was finally overturned entirely.
Fox still doesn’t have a No. 2 analyst to team up with Kevin Burkhardt after CBS stripped Charles Davis of the same level in the NFL. Fox had firm eyes on Greg Olsen for the job, but Olsen decided to play one more season after the Seahawks offered him $ 7 million. Fox still wants Olsen for after he retires.
Meanwhile, he is being patient in filling Davis’ spot for this season with Daryl Johnston and Mark Schlereth as possible one-year solutions, according to sources.
Joe Buck and Troy Aikman remain at the top of Fox Sports’ NFL gaming pyramid as the network’s leading voices on Sundays and Thursdays.