By Barry Janoff
July 26, 2016: Russell Wilson, Dez Bryant, Odell Beckham Jr., Clay Matthews and Super Bowl 50 MVP Von Miller are among a group of a dozen NFL players who will get time in the spotlight when they appear with Carrie Underwood in the new opening theme for NBC's Sunday Night Football.
The new opener will officially launch on Sept. 11 when the the New England Patriots play the Arizona Cardinals in the season-opening Sunday Night Football game.
However, NBC said it would air a sneak-peek of the opener during its coverage of the 2016 Summer Olympics (Aug. 5-21).
NBC will also air the 2016 Kickoff Game on Sept. 8 when the Carolina Panthers play the Denver Broncos in a rematch of Super Bowl 50.
The new opening, "Oh, Sunday Night," based on "Somethin' Bad," the song, sung with Miranda Lambert, that Underwood had a hit with in 2014.
The previous opening song, "Waiting All Day For Sunday Night," based on Joan Jett's "I Hate Myself For Loving You," was used from 2006 through last season.
NBC said the opener was shot in June in Universal Studios Hollywood.
In addition to Wilson (Seattle Seahawks), Bryant (Dallas Cowboys), Beckham Jr, (New York Giants), Matthews (Green Bay Packers) and Miller (Denver Broncos), the players in the new opener include Antonio Brown (Pittsburgh Steelers), Kam Chancellor (Seahawks), Khalil Mack (Oakland Raiders), Eli Manning (Giants), Tyrann Mathieu (Arizona Cardinals), Patrick Peterson (Cardinals) and Earl Thomas (Seahawks).
The new opener is guaranteed to be seen and heard by more than 20 million people, as Sunday Night Football last season was the No. 1 primetime show on TV (September-May) for the fifth consecutive year, averaging 22 million viewers.
2016 NBC Sunday Night Football Schedule
Thurs. Sept. 8 NFL Kickoff
Carolina Panthers at Denver Broncos
Sun. Sept. 11
New England Patriots at Arizona Cardinals
Sun. Sept. 18
Green Bay Packers at Minnesota Vikings
Sun. Sept. 25
Chicago Bears at Dallas Cowboys
Sun. Oct. 2
Kansas City Chiefs at Pittsburgh Steelers
Sun. Oct. 9
New York Giants at Green Bay Packers
Sun. Oct. 16
Indianapolis Colts at Houston Texans
Sun. Oct. 23
Seattle Seahawks at Arizona Cardinals
Sun. Oct. 30
Philadelphia Eagles at Dallas Cowboys
Sun. Nov. 6
Denver Broncos at Oakland Raiders
Sun. Nov. 13
Seattle Seahawks at New England Patriots
Sun. Nov. 20
Green Bay Packers at Washington Redskins
Thurs. Nov. 24
Pittsburgh Steelers at Indianapolis Colts
Sun. Nov. 27
New England Patriots at New York Jets
Sun. Dec. 4
Carolina Panthers at Seattle Seahawks
Sun. Dec. 11
Dallas Cowboys at New York Giants
Sun. Dec. 18
Pittsburgh Steelers at Cincinnati Bengals
Sun. Dec. 25
Denver Broncos at Kansas City Chiefs
Sun. Jan. 1
Photo: Courtesy NBC