Behind The ScenesNFL

Denis Leary draws inspiration from ESPN for Draft Day role; also heard on open for tonight’s NFL preseason game

Actor Denis Leary plays a Cleveland Browns head coach in the 2014 movie, Draft Day. In anticipation of that film, ESPN asked Leary to channel his inner coach for the opening tease to Monday Night Football’s four preseason games this month, beginning with tonight’s Cincinnati Bengals vs. Atlanta Falcons contest (8 p.m. ET, ESPN and WatchESPN).

In the video above – recorded Sunday at ESPN’s Los Angeles Production Facility – Leary discusses Draft Day, and he talks about the NFL coaching greats he’s observed – including MNF’s Jon Gruden and longtime ESPN contributor and Hall of Famer Bill Parcells – and modeled his character after. Gruden also appears in the movie.

Video above produced by Tonya Malinowski

Note: In the video below, ESPN reporter Greg Garber provides a behind-the-scenes look at the filming of the Ivan Reitman movie “Draft Day,” starring Leary, Kevin Costner and Jennifer Garner.

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