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Hear Keith Jackson Introduce The Very First Monday Night Football Game

Here are classic photos and sounds from the 1970 kickoff of the series on ABC to enjoy before the rematch of the inaugural MNF game tonight, Browns vs. Jets

On Sept. 21, 1970, commentators Keith Jackson, Howard Cosell and Don Meredith called the very first Monday Night Football game for ABC, featuring Joe Namath and the New York Jets versus Leroy Kelly and the Cleveland Browns.

Tonight, virtually half a century later, Joe Tessitore, Booger McFarland, John Parry and Lisa Salters are the voices of MNF, Namath and Kelly are Hall of Famers, and the Browns and the Jets once again face off under the Monday Night lights. Suzy Kolber sets the scene in the video above, which contains an outtake from play-by-play voice Jackson’s introduction to the first game in the MNF franchise.

Selected as the NFL 100 Game of the Week, Browns-Jets on MNF (8 p.m. ET, ESPN) will open with special recognition of NFL legends before introducing fans to the stars of today. Former Browns great Jim Brown will open with MNF’s signature “Are you ready for some football?” tagline while Namath will voice and appear in tonight’s opening tease.

Shelby L. Lacy and Allie Stoneberg produced the video.

On Sept. 21, 1970, ABC’s NFL “Monday Night Football” premiered with (L-R) Howard Cosell, Keith Jackson and Don Meredith calling the game action during the premiere game between the New York Jets and the Cleveland Browns. (ABC Sports Photo)
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