[NFL Network] strikes again with their terrible analysis. That’s what you get though, when you get a group of no brain meatheads with a collective IQ of around 80 to give their "expert" opinions. We don’t invest in defensive "bodies"? I understand, I guess, since we didn’t trade up to take Fili Moala, draft Terrence Taylor and Jerraud Powers, re-sign Ed Johnson, sign Adam Seward, and didn’t draft young guys recently like Clint Session, Phillip Wheeler, or Marcus Howard either. Yep, I guess Bill Polian just doesn’t care about defense, and Ron Meeks was the best DC ever, esp. better than some guy we just got to replace him that’s not even worthy of mention. Right, NFLN?
When I talk to other established bloggers (i.e., people with blogs that give them national recognition, or some junk), one topic that always comes up is the surprising amount of stupidity that comes from former players who try and analyze the game of football. Many of us marvel at just how dumb these half-brain dead morons sound when they discuss basic football topics on TV or in print. There is an old saying that players play, coaches coach, and few know how to do both. When you watch NFL Network's breakdown of the 2009 Colts, I think it is pretty safe to say Jamie Dukes does not have a future in coaching. In fact, if he keeps sounding as ignorant as he did in the Colts piece, his future in broadcasting might be in jeopardy.
Dukes makes the suggestion that the Colts do not invest enough "bodies" on defense. I got the distinct impression "bodies" was Dukes' definition for "first round draft picks." Apparently, in Dukes' world, the only players (or, bodies) worth a damn are players drafted in rounds one through... well, one. Rounds two through seven aren't worth his time, and if you are an undrafted rookie, the team should just give you the Spartan weak baby treatment.
What is funny in all this analysis is that Dukes himself was an undrafted player who managed to eek out a decent career in the NFL: Ten years with three different teams, most years with the Atlanta Falcons. He was an offensive lineman, which (of course) makes him totally qualified to talk about how a future Hall of Fame GM like Bill Polian should build a great defense.
If NFL Network wants to carve a niche in the TV world, why is it trying to be like ESPN? Fans like us stopped watching Chris Berman and his mindless pre-game show because it was short on analysis and long on Keyshawn Johnson (a guy no one likes, and no one respects). We stopped watching Terry Bradshaw and Howie Long do their fake comedy routine because they had about as much insight into the actual games as my 80-year-old landlady. The only reason I watch CBS' show is because James Brown (best sports program host in the biz) does a good job keeping Bill Cowher (a very knowledgeable coach) and Dan Marino on topic. I totally tune out Shannon Sharpe because even at age 40 the man still cannot speak the English language.
If NFL Network wanted to separate themselves from this pack of mindless drivel, why not tailor their content to the knowledgeable fan? Why not bring in people who might not look "flashy" on TV, but do a great job talking about the game. Don't they understand that, to us, the game is everything. Personalities come second to the game.
Why didn't they try to rope in Tony Dungy when he retired? Why not bring Mike Holmgren on set to talk about teams running the West Coast offense? ESPN's Trent Dilfer is one of the best analysts on TV when it comes to breaking down what teams like to do on offense and defense. Why not get him?
Instead, we're stuck with Jamie Dukes, Solomon Wilcotts, and Rod Woodson. Meh.
Maybe I just don't know TV, but I do know this: When just about every NFL fan I know complains that there isn't any good, intelligent pre-game coverage, that suggests to me that an up-and-coming network could have a shot at roping in a very loyal, very attention-starved demographic: The real NFL fan. Because, in all honesty, the only person watching any of these pre-game and post-game shows is an NFL fan. It would be nice if the network that is, you know, owned by the NFL would tailor its content to the NFL fan.