CBS gives Alex Smith, Mark Sanchez a chance at analyst

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Would Alex Smith make a good NFL game analyst? How about former Jet Mark Sanchez?

These are among the questions CBS Sports executives are asking themselves as it considers adding one of the former quarterbacks.

Recently, CBS held auditions with the just retired Smith, ESPNers Sanchez and Joey Galloway, as well as former Cowboys linebacker Sean Lee, according to sources.

Smith also had an audition with Fox and meetings with the NFL Network and ESPN. One person who saw Smith’s audition thought he had “No. 2 or 3 game analyst” potential if he is into it. Sanchez is looked at as someone with a little more personality, who one executive thought could excel in the booth. Galloway has been very solid for ESPN. Lee recently retired from playing.

CBS created an opening when it did not bring back longtime analyst Rich Gannon after the 2020 season. However, the network does not feel as if it has to add someone. CBS already has seven game analysts with Tony Romo, Charles Davis, Trent Green, James Lofton, Adam Archuleta, Tiki Barber and Jay Feely. Gannon was fourth on CBS’ depth chart last year.

Alex Smith and Mark Sanchez both tried out for CBS
Alex Smith and Mark Sanchez both tried out for CBS
Getty Images

Fox, meanwhile, had its No. 5 slot opened last year when Chris Spielman left to go run the Detroit Lions. Aqib Talib is likely to receive some more games from Fox, according to sources, but unlikely a full schedule this year. Fox has also tried out Jay Gruden as a game analyst.

Audible for Rodney Harrison and NBC

Rodney Harrison has signed a new deal, believed to be for two years, to continue on NBC’s “Football Night in America,” but his role will change, according to sources. Harrison, a mainstay, will work from game sites beginning this season.

The move is being made with the addition of Drew Brees, who will will join Mike Tirico, Tony Dungy, Chris Simms and Mike Florio in studio for the Sunday Night pregame.

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