Mike Mayock has been named the new general manager of the Oakland Raiders. That means one of the most respected draft analysts in the League will not be available to the NFL Network in 2019.
Richard Deitsch of The Athletic spoke with NFL Network’s Mark Quenzel about how the network will adjust to Mayock’s absence. Quenzel said that he is happy for Mayock to get the opportunity to move into a team’s front office. He told Deitsch that upon being informed of Mayock’s departure he said “Mike, I am so happy for you. Thank you for ruining my life!”.
All joking aside, Quenzel said that it isn’t lost on him how valuable Mayock has been and that no one person can make up for what the NFL Network is losing. “I am very surprised it took this long for (an NFL team to hire Mayock) and I have honestly been waiting for this call or text to come for a few years now. I always counted it as a blessing from our perspective that it didn’t come. But knowing that, we have been preparing for this for some time. Understanding that Mike is in many ways irreplaceable, we have incredible depth at the draft analyst position. Daniel Jeremiah is in many ways Mike’s equal in terms of knowledge. Obviously, he does not have Mike’s profile but he is amazing. Charles Davis is amazing, Bucky Brooks is amazing. We do not lack for people that know that absolute inside and outside of every draft class. So I am not worried about our ability to continue to deliver the information we have delivered with Mike.”
Jeremiah told Deitsch that he is already anticipating what the NFL Network’s desire to raise his profile will mean for his job description. “I think the biggest difference for me will be moving to the booth with Rich for our combine coverage. After the news was reported, I received a text from an NFL scout, ‘Hey DJ, you better work on your golf voice!’ I thought that was pretty funny. Also, I might be the new timer for Rich’s 40. That is a responsibility I’m not sure I’m ready to accept. I’m afraid it could impact our friendship.”
Quenzel stressed that he does not believe this will cause a mass defection of viewers away from the NFL Network on Draft Night. He acknowledged that there will be plenty of people that would be flipping back and forth between his product and ESPN’s anyway because of the competition’s planned MegaCast coverage of the event.
Still, Quenzel is confident in the NFL Network. “I think we can deliver an unbelievable product and my guess most of the people who watched us will continue to watch us.”