WATCH: Frank Gifford Debuts On MNF In 1971

frank gifford

Gifford made his debut on MNF in 1971, and worked the broadcast booth for 27 years (Youtube)

Frank Gifford played a legendary 12-year career in the NFL, lining up on both sides of the ball for the New York Giants. He gained national recognition when he joined Howard Cosell and Don Meredith in the broadcast booth for Monday Night Football. Gifford’s first appearance was in 1971, for a Chiefs-Jets preseason game. Here’s the opening segment (skip to 5:01 for just Gifford):

Gifford appeared a little nervous, but he became a fixture in the MNF booth. Gifford continued to work for Monday Night Football until late 1990’s, and left after 27 seasons and over 600 games. He also provided football commentary on CBS, and worked other ABC programs like Wide World of Sports and the 1972 Olympics.

Perhaps Gifford’s most famous call wasn’t even a football game. Gifford provided play-by-play for the USA-USSR Basketball Final at the 1972 Olympics. The Soviets defeated Team USA at the buzzer, but only after two clock errors gave them extra chances to score. That full game, with commentary by Gifford, can be found here.

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