UPDATED with final numbers: NBC continues its Overexposing Ryan Seacrest campaign — this time the network had The Man Who Can’t Say No open NBC’s regular-season NFL football franchise kickoff last night, in which he got loudly booed by Broncos fans in Denver’s Sports Authority Stadium. “Working the NFL season opener! Finally those 2-a-days paid off. I hope my high school coach is watching. #Kickoff2013”, Seacrest tweeted excitedly before his debut. “Please welcome — Ryan Seacrest,” Disembodied Voice said as a suit-and-tied Seacrest walked out on the field on national TV last night, and football fans began to jeer.
Because it was Ryan Seacrest. And they’re not stupid.
“I only know of one other countdown that might be as big as this show,” the master of self-promotion continued gamely — a reference to his New Year’s Rockin’ Eve gig on ABC. The crowd was not impressed. They booed some more.
“America is ready for 17 weeks of excitement, followed by the drama of the playoffs, all culminating in New York at the Super Bowl!” Seacrest said, explaining how the football season worked to Denver’s die-hard fans as though he was explaining to viewers some new rule change on American Idol. The crowd booed some more. “So come on Denver, let’s join these football greats — representing all 32 teams — and ring in the NFL season! Here we go!” he yelled, as the crowd continued to express unhappiness, and 25.1 million viewers saw it from the comfort of their couches and their sports bars. (continued)
Seacrest this morning may be re-thinking NBC’s other great idea — him hosting its new reality series Million Second Quiz, as part of his major image-boosting two-year deal with NBC parent Comcast. Under that agreement, NBC agreed to put Seacrest to work special-corresponding for Today, contributing to the net’s primetime news programming, to its Olympics coverage and, apparently, to its NFL coverage. Seacrest is already host of Fox’s Idol, a daily Clear Channel radio show and that ABC New Year’s Rockin’ Eve countdown he mentioned. He’s also the face of E!’s trophy-show coverage and is the Kardashian family’s exec producer of choice. Maybe the idea of hosting a tacky-ish 12-day competition-in-a-glass-house reality competition/social experiment in which players test their “knowledge” and endurance around the clock from a giant hourglass erected somewhere in New York now seems less attractive to The Man Who Would Replace Dick Clark — and Matt Lauer — than it did before his NFL debut last night.