ESPN’s Jimmy Platt Named New Director of Monday Night Football
Platt will take over for longtime MNF director Chip Dean
Jimmy Platt has been named the new Monday Night Football director, following in the footsteps of Chip Dean, who moved into a new role in January after directing ESPN NFL telecasts the past 18 years. Platt will now report to Dean.
A nine-year ESPN veteran, Platt has directed football since he joined the company full-time in 2010. The past five years, Platt has directed ESPN and ABC college football games, including at least one New Year’s Six bowls annually. His ESPN director resume features an array of other marquee sports and events – 10 years of college basketball games, the past two NCAA Women’s Basketball Final Fours, Major League Baseball games since 2013, four NCAA Lacrosse National Championships, and four College Football Awards telecasts.
“Jimmy has excelled at directing college football and other major events for ESPN, and we are fortunate to have him move into the director’s chair on Monday Night Football,” said Stephanie Druley, ESPN Executive Vice President, Event and Studio Production. “The diversity of his experience will bring a new and unique perspective to the role while continuing the tradition of excellence that has been part of Monday Night for nearly five decades.”
Platt told ESPN Front Row: “I’m excited about the challenge to carry such an iconic sports show into the future and help it evolve as the way viewers watch is continually changing.”
Dean transitions out of the MNF truck after directing ESPN’s NFL games since 2001 – first on Sunday Night Football (2001-05) and since 2006 on MNF. An original 1979er – ESPN’s 10th most-tenured current employee, Dean joined ESPN just two months after the original network launch.
Dean, who has been responsible for the development of ESPN’s Bristol-based team of directors since 2011, has expanded his focus, mentoring and collaborating with a larger team of directors, including college networks (SEC, ACC and Longhorn) and more. In his new role, Dean is working with event managers to create a path for aspiring directors and develop a succession plan across ESPN’s portfolio of sports properties, while continuing to integrate innovation and new technology.
Asked about his favorite part about being a director, Platt told ESPN Front Row, “The challenge of documenting a true reality show, where you can plan for situations, but you have to rely on your instinct, communication and vision to tell a story as it unfolds. The beauty of when the game starts is you never know where it will take you or exactly how you will help tell the story of the game.”
Platt added that he is most excited about the Chargers-Chiefs matchup in Mexico City on Nov. 18.
“I love to travel and explore cultures around the world. I especially love Spanish-speaking countries,” he said. “While I’m not fluent in Spanish, I am a conversational speaker and always enjoy connecting with people to gain a better insight into their country and lives. Plus, it will present a unique opportunity to showcase the NFL in Mexico and challenge us to visually showcase the city, stadium, and people.”