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Peyton Manning, Eli Manning, Aaron Rodgers among 13 NFL players joining Carrie Underwood in new "Sunday Night Football" opening

by Brandy McDonnell Published: August 28, 2013
Carrie Underwood (AP file)
Carrie Underwood (AP file)

Thirteen NFL players will join six-time Grammy Award-winner and multi-platinum recording artist Carrie Underwood, who hails from Checotah, for her performance of “Waiting All Day for Sunday Night,” the opening theme for primetime television’s No. 1 program, “Sunday Night Football” on NBC.

Underwood makes her debut on NBC’s first “Sunday Night Football” broadcast of the 2013 NFL season Sept. 8 as the Dallas Cowboys host their NFC East rival New York Giants. Coverage begins with “Football Night in America” at 6 p.m., and the opening theme will continue to play each week of the season to kick off “Sunday Night Football.”

Thirteen NFL players, who have accounted for 55 Pro Bowl selections, six Super Bowl rings and four Super Bowl MVP trophies, will participate in the open (six, denoted with an asterisk*, took part in a shoot this past June), according to a news release.

Here is the complete list:

• Arizona Cardinals WR Larry Fitzgerald

• New Orleans TE Jimmy Graham

• Detroit Lions WR Calvin Johnson

• Indianapolis Colts QB Andrew Luck*

• New York Giants QB Eli Manning*

• Denver Broncos QB Peyton Manning*

• Green Bay Packers LB Clay Matthews*

• Philadelphia Eagles RB LeSean McCoy

• Green Bay Packers QB Aaron Rodgers

• Baltimore Ravens LB Terrell Suggs*

• Dallas Cowboys DE DeMarcus Ware

• Houston Texans DE J.J. Watt*

• San Francisco 49ers LB Patrick Willis

“Waiting All Day for Sunday Night” is set to the original Joan Jett song, “I Hate Myself for Loving You” and marks Underwood’s first production with NBC Sports. From 2007-12, the song was performed by music superstar Faith Hill, and in 2006, the inaugural season of “Sunday Night Football,” Pink performed the opening tune.

Earlier this summer, NBC held “open auditions” to find the new voice for the “Sunday Night Football” theme song. See what happens when stars like Heidi Klum, Howie Mandel, Joan Rivers, Matt Lauer, Savannah Guthrie, Al Roker, Natalie Morales, Jillian Michaels, Billy Bush, Ken Jeong, Mika Brzezinski, Joe Scarborough, Yvette Nicole Brown and Craig T. Nelson take their best shot in the video posted below, and preview Underwood’s version below, too.

Later in this fall, Underwood will star in “The Sound of Music” on NBC in the coveted role of Maria Von Trapp. The three-hour live holiday production airing Dec. 5 will be based on the original 1959 Broadway production of “The Sound of Music,” which won the Tony Award as best musical.

Since winning Season 4 of “American Idol” and releasing her debut album in 2005, Underwood has sold more than 15 million albums, and placed 18 No. 1 singles on the charts, nine of which she co-wrote. Her recent album, “Blown Away,” made history by debuting at No. 1 on Billboard’s Top Country Albums Chart, making Underwood only the second country artist in the 47-year history of the chart to have each of their first four albums debut at No. 1.

The now platinum-selling “Blown Away” album also debuted at No. 1 on the all-genre Billboard 200 chart, making Underwood only the second country artist in history to have three consecutive albums debut at No. 1. She is a six-time Grammy winner, a two-time Academy of Country Music Entertainer of the Year, a three-time Country Music Association and ACM Female Vocalist winner and a proud member of the Grand Ole Opry.

For the second straight primetime television season in 2012-13, Sunday Night Football ranked as the most-watched (persons 2+) show, and the No. 1 program across the key demographics of Adults 18-49, 18-34, 25-54, as well as Men 18-49, 18-34 and 25-54, based on Nielsen live + same day data. Additionally, SNF was the No. 2 show among Women 18-34, and Women 18-49 based on Nielsen live + same day data.

See the full “Sunday Night Football” schedule after the break.

2013 SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL SCHEDULE

Thurs. Sept. 5 NFL Kickoff Baltimore Ravens at Denver Broncos

Sun. Sept. 8 Week 1 New York Giants at Dallas Cowboys

Sun. Sept. 15 Week 2 San Francisco 49ers at Seattle Seahawks

Sun. Sept. 22 Week 3 Chicago Bears at Pittsburgh Steelers

Sun. Sept. 29 Week 4 New England Patriots at Atlanta Falcons

Sun. Oct. 6 Week 5 Houston Texans at San Francisco 49ers

Sun. Oct. 13 Week 6 Washington Redskins at Dallas Cowboys

Sun. Oct. 20 Week 7 Denver Broncos at Indianapolis Colts

Sun. Oct. 27 Week 8 Green Bay Packers at Minnesota Vikings

Sun. Nov. 3 Week 9 Indianapolis Colts at Houston Texans

Sun. Nov. 10 Week 10 Dallas Cowboys at New Orleans Saints

*Sun. Nov. 17 Week 11 Green Bay Packers at New York Giants

*Sun. Nov. 24 Week 12 Denver Broncos at New England Patriots

**Thurs. Nov. 28 Week 13 Pittsburgh Steelers at Baltimore Ravens

*Sun. Dec. 1 Week 13 New York Giants at Washington Redskins

*Sun. Dec. 8 Week 14 Atlanta Falcons at Green Bay Packers

*Sun. Dec. 15 Week 15 Cincinnati Bengals at Pittsburgh Steelers

*Sun. Dec. 22 Week 16 New England Patriots at Baltimore Ravens

*Sun. Dec. 29 Week 17 TBA

*Flex Week

** Thanksgiving Night Game

-BAM

by Brandy McDonnell
Entertainment Reporter
Brandy McDonnell, also known by her initials BAM, writes stories and reviews on movies, music, the arts and other aspects of entertainment. She is NewsOK’s top blogger: Her 4-year-old entertainment news blog, BAM’s Blog, has notched more than 1...
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