NFL Network Vet Mike Muriano Joins Amazon As Exec Producer Of Live Sports At Prime Video

Mike Muriano, a 20-year veteran of the NFL Network, has joined Amazon as Executive Producer, Live Sports at Prime Video as the streaming powerhouse continues to ramp up its sports efforts.

About a year from now, Amazon will begin a significant new chapter, taking over exclusive rights to the NFL’s Thursday Night Football in a precedent-setting digital deal. For the first time since Fox wrested NFL rights away from CBS in the 1990s, a new broadcaster will be ramping up an operation to beam games into homes. In recent years, Amazon has streamed Thursday NFL games, but as simulcasts produced by network partners. Now, it will handle the nuts and bolts of engineering and also hire new on-air personalities as it embarks on the 11-year deal.

Muriano will build and manage the U.S.-based sports content team handling NFL programming, Amazon said. The team will develop the on-air look, feel, and tone of Prime Video’s U.S.-based sports programming. He will also be responsible for building a diverse and dynamic roster of talent both on-air and behind the camera. Mike will report to Jared Stacy, director of live production at Prime Video.

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In a memo to employees, Stacy said, “We are thrilled to have someone with Mike’s experience and creativity join Prime Video to shape our NFL coverage for years to come. With an impressive track record of delivering premium NFL productions for nearly two decades, Mike is an invaluable addition to the team and an exceptional leader with great respect throughout the industry and NFL community.”

Marie Donoghue, Amazon’s VP of Global Sports Video, called the hire “a game changer for us as a service,” adding that Muriano “brings incredible passion and expertise to our rapidly growing team. His respect and trust with stakeholders throughout the NFL will be essential as we architect the future of football on Prime Video.”

During his two decades at the NFL Network, Muriano started as a segment producer and rose through the ranks to become VP & Executive Producer, Studio & Remote Content. He managed the production of live studio and remote programming for NFL Media, including high profile properties such as NFL Total Access, NFL GameDay, Thursday Night Football and the NFL Draft.

Amazon, which is under the leadership of a new CEO, Andy Jassy, is making up ground in digital advertising that it had previously ceded to Facebook and Google. Video is a key aspect to the effort, with live sports on Prime Video joining Fire TV and IMDb TV as growing venues for advertisers. The NFL remains the top draw in TV, dominating the ratings charts, but streaming offers a much higher degree of targeting and visibility on viewers and potential customers than does traditional broadcasting.

Amazon does not break out advertising as a specific line item in its financial reports. In July, the company said its “Other” category, saw revenue jump 87% in the second quarter compared with the year-earlier period, surpassing $7.9 billion.

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