With the departure of Jon Gruden from the “Monday Night Football” to coach the Oakland Raiders, a void has been created in the broadcasting booth. Many times a former player will fill the void and that may be the case this time. According to CBS sports, however, it won't be Brett Favre. Favre reportedly didn't exactly ace his audition. That same report also said Peyton Manning turned the job down. Throughout its 48-year history, "MNF" has used a long list of high profile former athletes and celebrities in the booth, with mixed results.

Glory Days

While Keith Jackson was the initial play by play guy, the broadcast hit it's stride in 1971 when Frank Gifford took over the play by play duties while Howard Cosell played himself with Dandy Don Meredith providing some comic relief and serving as a counterpoint to Cosell.

Some long-time football fans probably think of 1971-74 as the Golden Age of "MNF."

Gifford was a competent play by play guy and a good moderator between Cosell and Meredith. While "MNF" has had some good broadcasting teams since then, it's never achieved that balanced mix since then.

A roster of All-Stars, but not an All-Star roster

A number of big-name former players have been in the booth, with mixed results. Included in that list are Alex Karras, Joe Namath, O. J. Simpson, Fran Tarkenton, and Dan Dierdorf. Most of those guys were fairly non-nondescript, though, in my opinion, Alex Karras had one of the best lines in the history of the series when he said Raiders defensive lineman, Otis Sistrunk, was from the University of Mars. That was the highlight of Karras' three year run in the booth.

Former offensive lineman, Dan Dierdorf, had a 12-year run in the "MNF" booth from 1987-98. Beyond the glory days of early glory days of "MNF," Deirdorf's tenure in the booth was a high point of the broadcasts.

And now for something different...

At times, "MNF" tried too hard to inject humor into their broadcasts. A case in point is the hiring of Dennis Miller. While Miller can be funny, his work on "MNF" sometimes seemed stilted, forced and rehearsed. But Miller was far from the worst idea ever seen on "MNF." That honor would fall to the hiring of Rush Limbaugh.

A Rush to the exit

Limbaugh was a color guy on "MNF" for a few weeks in 2003. Limbaugh lasted only a few weeks. Possibly because he thought every play should be run to the right and criticized any play going to the left. He also thought running plays were named after him. Well actually, that wasn't the case, but some of his statements got him in trouble and the Rush Limbaugh on "MNF" experiment was short-lived.

Regardless of who ends up in the "MNF" booth this season, they probably won't be a s good as the Gifford, Cosell and Meredith trio, but will no doubt be better than Rush Limbaugh.