NEW YORK (AP) — ESPN President Jimmy Pitaro expects competition from Silicon Valley when the NFL's television contracts come up for renewal.

The cable network's $15.2 billion, eight-year contract with the league for Monday night games runs through 2021. CBS, NBC and Fox and NBC have deals with the NFL that extend to 2022.

Amazon, Google and Facebook could be among the bidders.

Speaking Thursday during a discussion at the Paley Center for Media, Pitaro said, "I have no idea if they're going to be interested specifically in 'Monday Night Football,' but I do believe that several new media companies are going to be interested in acquiring more NFL rights."

He added: "I still very much like ESPN's hand, if you look at what we offer in terms of production expertise, in terms of the scale and scope, in terms of what we can do with the game, around the game, 'SportsCenter,' all of our original programming, how we can drive value for our league partners I think is really the differentiator."

Pitaro said ESPN's production staff changed the new graphic at halftime during Monday's Houston-New Orleans game before he sent a note he was typing up on his couch at home. Viewers complained the yellow background for down and distance appeared to indicate a flag had been thrown on the field.

Interviewed by ESPN broadcaster Hannah Storm, Pitaro told her, "I think your description of 'holy cow, there's something wrong' was kind."

He added: "By the way, I'm color blind, so I didn't quite understand what was wrong."

Pitaro became ESPN's president in March 2018 following the resignation of John Skipper. He reports to Robert Iger, CEO of The Walt Disney Co.

———

More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP—NFL

Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

More from this section

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) — Odell Beckham Jr. had an 89-yard touchdown catch and a spectacular one-handed grab in his return to MetLife Stadium, and Baker Mayfield and the Cleveland Browns did just enough to beat the short-handed and banged-up New York Jets 23-3 on Monday night.