The National Football League en espanol is coming to three Telemundo stations this fall as part of Hispanic Heritage Month.
The result of a unique deal between the league, NBC and its sister Hispanic network Telemundo, the Sept. 26 "Sunday Night Football" game between the Miami Dolphins and New York Jets also will be broadcast on three Telemundo stations — in New York, Miami and Los Angeles. That's in addition to its national broadcast on NBC.
"We are pleased to partner with NBC Sports and Telemundo to offer our Hispanic fans the Dolphins-Jets 'Sunday Night Football' game in English and Spanish," NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said in a statement. "This unique broadcast allows us to further connect with this passionate fan base in their language of choice, as we celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month. We are committed to delivering NFL content to our Hispanic fans."
In addition to the participating teams' home markets, Los Angeles was selected by the league because it is the hometown of Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez (right), who played college football at the University of Southern California in L.A. and whose family is of Mexican descent.
Telemundo will broadcast the game using the NBC game feed, but will use its own announcers, including Jessi Losada, Rene Girardo and Edgar Lopez. Losada is a 25-year veteran Hispanic sports broadcaster, who has been with Telemundo since 1999. He has been part of several award-winning World Cup telecasts and also does play-by-play of TNT's weekly NBA Latin American telecasts.
Telemundo will produce its own pre-game, halftime and post-game shows live from the game site.
To open the game, the national anthem will be performed by Latin singer Marc Anthony, a limited partner in the Dolphins' ownership group.
Telemundo is still in discussions with the NFL and NBC to determine how many ad units its stations will get to sell to advertisers during the game.
"There's no question that Hispanics love soccer, but they also love football," Don Browne, CEO of Telemundo, told TheWrap, adding that more second-, third- and fourth-generation Hispanics now are playing football in college and the NFL.
"I applaud the NFL for being creative and innovative with this idea," Browne said.
The 2009 NFL regular season telecasts on CBS, NBC, Fox and ESPN averaged 1.1 million Hispanic viewers, more than any other U.S. sport, up 31 percent from 2008. And Super Bowl XLIV was the most-watched sports program and most-watched English-language program among Hispanics in history.
In 2007, during the Dallas Cowboys vs. Chicago Bears "Sunday Night Football" game, NBC Sports produced Spanish-language versions of its "Sunday Night Is Football Night" promotional campaign featuring one of the Bears' linemen, Roberto Garza.
The NFL and Telemundo also have partnered for the past four years to produce an NFL feature segment, "Hoy en el NFL," which airs on Telemundo's Sunday "Titulares Telemundo" show. They've also partnered on two annual Super Bowl specials, "Tazon Latino" and "Pepsi Musica Super Bowl Fiesta."
The NFL also has partnered with ESPN Deportes during the 2008 Hispanic Heritage Month with the telecast on that Hispanic network of the Philadelphia Eagles vs. Dallas Cowboys game and during the 2009 Heritage Month with the telecast of the Jets- Dophins game.