2013 NFL Schedule: The Primetime Games: Broncos, Falcons, 49ers, Giants, Patriots, Redskins Have Five Games Each

 

 

 

 

 

 

Robert Griffin III and the Washington Redskins will play five games in primetime this season, starting with the 2013 opener against the Philadelphia Eagles on September 9 on ESPN.

Robert Griffin III and the Washington Redskins will play five games in primetime this season, starting with the 2013 opener against the Philadelphia Eagles on September 9 on ESPN.

Here is the list of all the primetime games scheduled for the 2013 NFL season.

Commentary to follow… Actually, I’ll get the back-patting out of the way early: I called the Ravens/Broncos opener on September 5, and I called the Washington Redskins getting five primetime games this season, up from just one last year.

And here are the games:

Thursday, September 5 – Baltimore Ravens @ Denver Broncos – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Sunday, September 8 – New York Giants @ Dallas Cowboys – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, September 9 – Philadelphia Eagles @ Washington Redskins – 7:10 PM ET – ESPN

Monday, September 9 –  Houston Texans @ San Diego Chargers – 10:20 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, September 12 – New York Jets @ New England Patriots – 8:25 PM ET – NFL Network

Sunday, September 15 – San Francisco 49ers @ Seattle Seahawks – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, September 16 – Pittsburgh Steelers @ Cincinnati Bengals – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, September 19 – Kansas City Chiefs @ Philadelphia Eagles – 8:25 PM ET – NFL Network

Sunday, September 22 – Chicago Bears @ Pittsburgh Steelers – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, September 23 – Oakland Raiders @ Denver Broncos – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, September 26 – San Francisco 49ers @ St. Louis Rams – 8:25 PM ET – NFL Network

Sunday, September 29 – New England Patriots @ Atlanta Falcoms – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, September 30 – Miami Dolphins @ New Orleans Saints – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, October 3 – Buffalo Bills @ Cleveland Browns – 8:25 PM ET – NFL Network

Sunday, October 6 – Houston Texans @ San Francisco 49ers – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, October 7 – New York Jets @ Atlanta Falcons – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, October 10 – New York Giants @ Chicago Bears – 8:25 PM ET – NFL Network

Sunday, October 13 – Washington Redskins @ Dallas Cowboys – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, October 14 – Indianapolis Colts @ San Diego Chargers – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, October 17 – Seattle Seahawks @ Arizona Cardinals – 8:25 PM ET – NFL Network

Sunday, October 20 – Denver Broncos @ Indianapolis Colts – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, October 21 – Minnesota Vikings @ New York Giants – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, October 24 – Carolina Panthers @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers – 8:25 PM ET – NFL Network

Sunday, October 27 – Green Bay Packers @ Minnesota Vikings – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, October 28 – Seattle Seahawks @ St. Louis Rams – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, October 31 – Cincinnati Bengals @ Miami Dolphins – 8:25 PM ET – NFL Network

Sunday, November 3 – Indianapolis Colts @ Houston Texans – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, November 4 – Chicago Bears @ Green Bay Packers – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, November 7 – Washington Redskins @ Minnesota Vikings – 8:25 PM ET – NFL Network

Sunday, November 10 – Dallas Cowboys @ New Orleans Saints – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, November 11 – Miami Dolphins @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, November 14 –Indianapolis Colts @ Tennessee Titans – 8:25 PM ET – NFL Network

Sunday, November 17 – Green Bay Packers @ New York Giants – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, November 18 – New England Patriots @ Carolina Panthers – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, November 21 – New Orleans Saints @ Atlanta Falcons – 8:25 PM ET – NFL Network

Sunday, November 24 – Denver Broncos @ New England Patriots – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, November 25 – San Francisco 49ers @ Washington Redskins – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, November 28 (Thanksgiving) – Pittsburgh Steelers @ Baltimore Ravens – 8:20 PM ET – NBC

Sunday, December 1 – New York Giants @ Washington Redskins – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, December 2 – New Orleans Saints @ Seattle Seahawks – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, December 5 – Houston Texans @ Jacksonville Jaguars – 8:25 PM ET – NFL Network

Sunday, December 8 – Atlanta Falcons @ Green Bay Packers – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, December 9 – Dallas Cowboys @ Chicago Bears – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Thursday, December 12 – San Diego Chargers @ Denver Broncos – 8:25 PM ET – NFL Network

Sunday, December 15 – Cincinnati Bengals @ Pittsburgh Steelers – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, December 16 – Baltimore Ravens @ Detroit Lions – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Sunday, December 22 – New England Patriots @ Baltimore Ravens – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

Monday, December 23 – Atlanta Falcons @ San Francisco 49ers – 8:40 PM ET – ESPN

Sunday, December 29 – [Teams to be determined following Week 16] – 8:30 PM ET – NBC

TEAMS WITH FIVE PRIMETIME GAMES: Atlanta Falcons, Denver Broncos, New England Patriots, New York Giants, San Francisco 49ers, Washington Redskins.

TEAMS WITH FOUR PRIMETIME GAMES: Baltimore Ravens, Chicago Bears, Dallas Cowboys, Green Bay Packers, Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts, New Orleans Saints, Pittsburgh Steelers, Seattle Seahawks.

TEAMS WITH THREE PRIMETIME GAMES: Cincinnati Bengals, Miami Dolphins, Minnesota Vikings, San Diego Chargers.

TEAMS WITH TWO PRIMETIME GAMES: Carolina Panthers, New York Jets, Philadelphia Eagles, St. Louis Rams, Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

TEAMS WITH ONE PRIMETIME GAME: Arizona Cardinals, Buffalo Bills, Cleveland Browns, Detroit Lions, Jacksonville Jaguars, Kansas City Chiefs, Oakland Raiders, Tennessee Titans.

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OBSERVATIONS: So, let me get this straight: The Baltimore Ravens win the Super Bowl, yet the runner-up gets one more primetime game in the ensuing season than the World Champions? Explain that to me.

Also, explain to me how the NFL didn’t greenlight the Denver Broncos going to Dallas on Thanksgiving Day. This was a given when the AFC opponents for the Cowboys were released at the top of the year. Or so I thought. Now, it’s going to be a chance to pass out with tryptophan in between another Packers/Lions matinee and the Ravens hosting another Thanksgiving night game, this time against the division rival Pittsburgh Steelers.

I wonder if Peyton Manning not getting a Thanksgiving date with Tony Romo was a byproduct of the Broncos actually hosting the NFL kickoff game.

Predictably, the Eagles/Chiefs game with Andy Reid bringing a new squad into Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia is an NFL Network Thursday night affair.

Predictably, that’s the Chiefs’ lone primetime game. The Jaguars’ sole primetime tilt in 2013 is also on NFLN, as was the case last year. Ditto for the Browns and the Bills, who actually play each other on an NFLN game; the Bills and the Dolphins killed two birds with one Thursday night primetime stone last season.

Thr Dolphins improve from one primetime game last year to three this year. Same with the Vikings. The Colts go from one primetime game last season to four this season. And I’ve already told you about the Redskins’ maxing out at five games, up from one last year.

Further proof NBC loves the NFC East: The Cowboys and Giants open the “Sunday Night Football” 2013 campaign. The Cowboys will appear on “SNF” three times this year, as will the Giants. Two of the Redskins’ five night contests are on NBC; two of them will air on ESPN. Eagles? Nowhere to be found on NBC’s initial schedule. Of course, the latter half of the season allows flex scheduling, so if the Eagles are actually a good team, they’ll likely see more than just the two games (down from five last year() they’ve been scheduled this year. In other words: the Cowboys/Eagles game that was not flexed out late last season might be the last time in awhile you’ll hear Al Michaels working an Eagles game.

And for the first time in recent memory, there are no Saturday games scheduled. The Bay City Rollers will now have to find alternate ways to be preoccupied this year.

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Ravens To Open 2013-14 Season On Road… In Denver?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Peyton Manning might get a chance to avenge his loss to the Baltimore Ravens in the recent NFL playoffs, as the Ravens are forced to play their season opener, scheduled for Thursday, September 5, on the road due to the Orioles citing their inability to reschedule their home game with the White Sox that same night.

Peyton Manning might get a chance to avenge his loss to the Baltimore Ravens in the recent NFL playoffs, as the Ravens are forced to play their season opener, scheduled for Thursday, September 5, on the road due to the Orioles citing their inability to reschedule their home game with the White Sox that same night.

For the first time since the Super Bowl champion was anointed the host of a season kickoff game at home, the Baltimore Ravens will be unable to continue this tradition, as the baseball team in town, the Orioles – who haven’t won a World Series in three decades – has decided to be a killjoy.

In a statement, the O’s claim all teams and leagues involved have done “everything possible to work with us to explore all options to reschedule the September 5 game.

“Given the limited options available to reschedule the game at that late date in the season, the parties jointly determined that even an earlier start time would still create such enormous logistical difficulties that it would greatly diminish the fan experience for both events which all parties realized would not be in the interest of their fans or the City.”

September 5 is the first Thursday of the month, on which the NFL has designated it its season “kickoff” night. The only exception was last year, when the New York Giants/Dallas Cowboys tilt was rescheduled to the Wednesday of that week, due to President Obama’s keynote presentation on the final night of the four-night Democratic National Convention, which was the Thursday of that week. (For the record, the Yankees and Mets were both on the road that day, but given their home stadiums are located outside the Giants’ field in New Jersey, there probably wouldn’t be that much of a brouhaha.)

And by the way, the first Wednesday of September this year is Rosh Hashanah, and the league had expressed at league meetings in Arizona this week their desire not to reschedule a Ravens’ home opener to that night. The Orioles would be finishing a three-game series in Cleveland that night, before embarking on a four-game homestand against the White Sox.

“While we are disappointed for the fans in Baltimore, we appreciate the efforts of the Ravens, Orioles and Major League Baseball and understand the logistical problems in trying to schedule the teams on the same day,” said the Ravens in their own team statement. “The Ravens will open the season on the road on Thursday night, September 5, in our annual NFL Kickoff Game on NBC.”

Unconfirmed to this point is whose stadium they will be invading on opening night.

Just as I speculated on which team I thought the Ravens would be hosting on September 5 on the day after they won the Super Bowl, I am now going to predict which team will host the Super Bowl champions on that night.

I will admit that a lot of research and thinking went into that post, but upon taking a good look at the eight teams they’re scheduled to play on the road this season, this time around, I invested as much time in my prediction as you did in reading this sentence.

Broncos.

Yes, the Denver Broncos, who hosted the divisional round playoff game in which the Ravens vanquished them in overtime en route to their second Lombardi Trophy, is the odd team outside of the three rivals in their division, half of another division in the AFC (Bills, Dolphins) and half of an NFC division (Bears, Lions) that the Ravens will be facing away from M&T Bank Stadium.

Yes, despite his struggles in that game, Peyton Manning is still ratings gold. In fact, his Broncos debut opened the “Sunday Night Football” season last year.

And yes, there could be a new rivarly budding between Manning and Joe Flacco, he of the record contract he signed in the offseason. Manning vs. Tom Brady it isn’t, but NBC will take it.

Heck, NBC would gladly take a rematch of an overtime playoff game in which the eventual Super Bowl champions prevailed – a game that was played on CBS, by the way.

So is Ravens/Broncos on September 5 in the bag? Not right away. Remember, CBS, the NFL’s AFC broadcast partner, has owned-and-operated television stations in Denver (KCNC-TV) as well as Baltimore (WJZ-TV). I’ll remind you how CBS was as defensive against NBC swiping away a regular season NFL game between the New England Patriots (CBS also owns WBZ-TV in Boston) and the Tim Tebow-led Broncos, as the Orioles appear to be for the right to play a regular season baseball game as scheduled, at a point in the season where either the O’s or the White Sox may be well out of playoff contention by the time the first pitch in that game is thrown.

For the Orioles’ sake, I just hope there isn’t rain in the forecast on the evening of September 5.

But who knows? It might be raining touchdowns in Denver that night.

And the big winner would be NBC.

Stay tuned.

Go 46ers! Jefferson City, MO TV Station Blacks Out During Super Bowl Text Messages

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Missouri television station erroneously reported that the San Francisco 49ers won Super Bowl XLVII via text message. That was after they first reported that the Baltimore Ravens had beat the "46ers" to win the Super Bowl.

A Missouri television station erroneously reported that the San Francisco 49ers won Super Bowl XLVII via text message. That was after they first reported that the Baltimore Ravens had beat the “46ers” to win the Super Bowl.

It was a Super Bowl that was watched by a great amount of people, even with a half-hour delay due to a stadium blackout in New Orleans.

But when the final seconds ticked off in Super Bowl XLVII, a television station’s news department fumbled not once, but twice, in relaying the final score to viewers subscribed to their “Textcaster” feature.

Of course, the Baltimore Ravens defeated the San Francisco 49ers, 34-31.

But according to KMIZ/”ABC 17″ in Jefferson City, Missouri, the Ravens actually beat the “San Francisco 46ers.” (Did a few states secede during that blackout?)

Immediately, the people in charge of the text service corrected the information – or so they thought.

“Correction,” read the subsequent text message. “San Francisco 49ers win Super Bowl 34-31.”

Not only did KMIZ give the 49ers their name back, they also handed them the Lombardi Trophy.

Was Brian Billick minding their texts?

Finally, a third text message was sent, reading: “After a few mistakes on our part, it was the Ravens over the 49ers 34-31 in Super Bowl XLVII. Apologies.”

Okay – if they had simply corrected the name of the team from the “46ers” to the “49ers,” we’d give them the benefit of the doubt. But following up that error with another one is just downright sloppy texting.

And what if you were one of the few people in mid-Missouri who could not watch the big game, that actually depended on these text messages for information?

I reached out to News Press & Gazette Broadcasting, the company that owns KMIZ-TV, and a person named Justin would not comment beyond saying “it was a mistake from our news department.” He also could not confirm how many viewers, if any, unsubscribed from the station’s text message service as a result of their Super snafu over the weekend.

Hey, we’re human. We are all not immune from mistakes. Nobody’s perfect. I get that.

But needing to send three texts for a simple score of the most popular football game of the year?

I suppose sending those texts while driving would make matters worse.

Dan Sileo, Deer Antler Spray Guinea Pig

 

 

 

 

 

 

WQAM/Miami host Dan Sileo spent his entire show on Monday imbibing deer antler spray and patches that he claims to have received from Mitch Ross, the alleged PED dealer of Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis, in New Orleans last week.

WQAM/Miami host Dan Sileo spent his entire show on Monday imbibing deer antler spray and patches that he claims to have received from Mitch Ross, the alleged PED dealer of Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis, in New Orleans last week.

“We will be making radio history,” Dan Sileo tweeted on Monday morning.

Many daily radio shows did their usual Monday morning quarterbacking of a blackout-prolonged, Beyonce-halftimed Super Bowl that was won by the Baltimore Ravens, and the final game of the career of linebacker Ray Lewis.

Sileo, on the other hand, opted for something that may earn him a Pulitzer Prize, if not a Marconi award.

You may recall that allegations of Lewis using deer antler spray were circulating not too long after the Ravens punched their ticket to the big game.

It was a game that Sileo, days removed from a suspension for tweaking Erin Andrews on Twitter, helped promote as he broadcasted live from the site of Super Bowl XLVII.

“I had an epiphany in New Orleans,” Sileo told his listeners on WQAM/Miami on Monday. “As I was coming home on Friday, there was an intervention… Who did I see but Mitch Ross himself, Ray’s dealer.”

Sileo claims that Ross gave him the same PED’s that Ross says Lewis (allegedly) received from him.

And who knew that a Ravens Super Bowl victory would lead Sileo to do some investigative journalism, live on his show.

“I was inspired by Ray’s performance last night.”

Inspired, that is, to be a deer antler spray lab rat.

“This is the most journalistic thing I will ever do,” Sileo proclaimed. “Most men can just report on stories; I am going to give you personal hands-on knowledge on whether or not deer antler velvet works.

“This is, without a doubt, radio history being made,” he continued. “We are doing an NFL-banned substance on the radio, right now, for you. The journalistic integrity that we have here on the program, that we never have, is here on display for you right now. And nor do I want it, but today, I felt compelled to tell you out there, that if the deer antler made Ray Lewis a champion, hopefully it makes me a champion broadcaster.”

And so, Sileo proceeded to take some sprays of deer antler. “Mitch told me ten sprays under the tongue.”

The problem is, by the end of his show, he would take a grand total of thirty-three sprays.

And I lost track of how many chips he used in addition to the spray.

“The chips, the most important thing, that Ray swears takes pain away, and helps his arm so that he can be a Super Bowl champion,” Sileo said. “Since my knee… that I’ve had four surgeries on… is hurting badly, I am going to do my right knee with the actual Mitch Ross chips.”

In the second hour of the show, Sileo gave his audience an update: “I’m feeling emotional like Ray was last night.” Also, “There is a tingling sensation in my heart now.

“I’m gonna power through this,” he said, as he seeked another “Ray Lewis chip” to place on his wrist. Also, because “my aunt is really concerned about my health right now,” he decided to turn his cell phone off. “My aunt’s blowing it up… My jounalistic integrity is on the line.”

It was around that time that Sileo also made a revelation.

“I’ve shot myself with pregnant women’s urine before. It brings the melons back, if you know what I’m saying; it turns raisins into coconuts… I’ve got a whole lot of pregnant women’s urine in my refrigerator right now.”

When Sileo started this experiment, he warned listeners that he “might pass out.”

Sure enough, at the very end of his show, he took two final sprays, struggled through a live read, and then lost consciousness – or at least it sounded like he did. Sileo’s sidekicks had to end the show for him. (The photo you see above was taken and tweeted by a WQAM staffer.)

So is the deer antler stuff that potent? Or is it just too much for one radio host?

You be the judge.

(Full audio of the entire February 4, 2013 Dan Sileo show is available here.)

Baltimore Ravens Will Kick Off 2013-14 NFL Season On NBC Against… Pittsburgh Steelers? New England Patriots?

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Baltimore Ravens will begin their defense of the Super Bowl championship with a Thursday night "kickoff" game on NBC, and it will likely be against the division rival Pittsburgh Steelers on September 5.

The Baltimore Ravens will begin their defense of the Super Bowl championship with a Thursday night “kickoff” game on NBC, and it will likely be against the division rival Pittsburgh Steelers on September 5.

There is but 213 days until the 2013-14 NFL season kicks off.

Not like we’re the only ones keeping track, or anything.

But with not even a single game scheduled (sans the two games taking place in London) for the upcoming NFL season – the entirely of which is slated to be released in mid-April (and that hasn’t stopped me in predicting which games will be played this upcoming Thanksgiving) – this much is true: Your Super Bowl champion Baltimore Ravens will open the season with a “kickoff” game airing on Thursday, September 5, on NBC.

The question is, who will their opponent be?

In the seven years that NBC has aired the season kickoff game, only two of those games were divisional matchups: New York Giants/Washington Redskins in 2008, and the Giants’ Wednesday night loss to the Dallas Cowboys last year. Meanwhile, the Pittsburgh Steelers have appeared in two of the three games that the AFC team winning the previous year’s big game have hosted the “kickoff” game in the ensuing year. Yet the Steelers, in their fifteen appearances on “Sunday Night Football,” have played the Ravens on “SNF” at least once during the last four seasons; the Ravens hosted the Steelers in 2009 and 2010; the Ravens would then win both subsequent “SNF” matchups against the Steelers at Heinz Field in 2011 and 2012.

So it’s very conceivable to think that the Ravens will host their division rival Steelers at M&T Bank Stadium on NBC, when the 2013-14 season kicks off.

But let’s look at the rest of the opponents the Ravens will be facing at home for the remainder of the year. Right away, we can count out the other AFC North foes, the Cincinnati Bengals and the Cleveland Browns. With AFC North teams scheduled to play interconference games against the NFC North division, the Ravens are due to host the Green Bay Packers and Minnesota Vikings, both of whom made the playoffs this past season.

Then, there’s the rest of the slate of AFC teams that will be traveling to Baltimore next season: the New York Jets, the New England Patriots and the Houston Texans.

If the Jets were not undergoing their current image problems (read: had they made the playoffs), you could make an argument for them being the Ravens’ first opponent of the year, given Jets head coach Rex Ryan’s previous ties with the Ravens. In fact, both teams had opened up their respective 2010 campaigns on “Monday Night Football.”

But then you have the Patriots and the Texans, two teams that the Ravens had met in the playoffs in recent years: in the 2011-12 playoffs, they defeated the Texans, en route to a crucial missed field goal sealing a loss to the Patriots in Foxboro – a loss, of course, that the Ravens would avenge in the Patriots’ house just a few weeks ago.

On paper, a Patriots/Ravens game would immediately blow a Steelers/Ravens game out of the water as your season opener. And the fact that the Ravens and Patriots both faced each other in the playoffs over the past two years, combined with the Ravens just recently winning it all, would add to the storylines for such a game. People are already drawing conclusions as to whether or not Joe Flacco is a better quarterback than Tom Brady, and that discussion is sure to continue through the offseason – and a culmination on the Thursday night primetime stage would be something that the NFL would want.

But would CBS stand for it? Each year, the NFL’s broadcast partners file requests for “protected games.” And with CBS possessing an owned-and-operated broadcast affiliate in both Boston and Baltimore, to have a game that could be lucrative to the network as a juicy late-game broadcast taken away for airing on NBC, may not sit well with the Eye Network. (CBS also has an O&O in Pittsburgh, but the Ravens and Steelers play each other two times per year.)

You already know how influential Patriots owner Robert Kraft is, and how he wielded his power when the league had considered moving a Broncos/Patriots telecast from CBS to “Sunday Night Football” on NBC at the height of “Tebowmania” (yes, CBS also has an O&O in Denver).

To me, the strong favorite for the 2013-14 season opener would be Patriots/Ravens, as it should. But should CBS have a problem with that, then it’ll likely be Steelers/Ravens. I mean, it’s as if they’re destined to play another game on NBC this year by default, so you may as well upgrade it to a season kickoff game. And consider this: all four Steelers/Ravens games played on NBC over the last four seasons have been decided by a single field goal. The Ravens have won three of four, including the aforementioned road victories in Pittsburgh. NBC would be guaranteed a close game – which, in turn, equals great ratings.

And did I mention that the Patriots were actually flexed out of a few “Sunday Night Football” broadcasts?

It’ll probably be Big Ben Roethlisberger vs. “F—ing Awesome” Joe Flacco to kick off the 2013-14 season.

Or will it be Flacco vs. Tom Brady?

Which would you rather want as the 2013-14 season opener? Post your thoughts in the comments below.

Boomer Defends Blowing Up Ray Lewis On Super Bowl Broadcast: "Somebody Has To Say Something"

 

 

 

 

 

 

Boomer Esiason explained on his WFAN radio show why he went after Ray Lewis on CBS' Super Bowl pregame show the day before.

Boomer Esiason explained on his WFAN radio show why he went after Ray Lewis on CBS’ Super Bowl pregame show the day before.

Boomer Esiason is not a big fan of Ray Lewis.

That much was made known during CBS’ Super Bowl XLVII pregame show.

After the network aired a pre-recorded interview with Lewis that was conducted by Shannon Sharpe, Boomer’s colleague and Ray’s former teammate, Esiason expressed his skepticism of the now-retired Baltimore Ravens linebacker, who will soon join him in the sports broadcasting field.

At one point during the piece, Lewis blamed “our system” for not being effective in prevailing with “the bottom line truth” of the murder case that the player was involved with in 2000.

“I’m not so sure that I buy the answer,” Esiason commented. “He was involved in a double murder… He knows what went on there. And he can obviously come out and say it, but he doesn’t want to say it; he paid off the families.”

As CBS would show Lewis giving his Ravens teammates one final pregame pep talk – the Ravens would go on to upend the San Francisco 49ers, 34-31 – Esiason once again took a potshot at him. “I’m getting sick and tired of Ray Lewis,” he was quoted as saying. “This is not the Ray Lewis show.”

The next morning, a caller had brought up Esiason’s being fired up about Lewis (to borrow a quote from Lewis himself) on WFAN/New York’s “Boomer & Carton” morning show.

“Marino’s not going to say anything, Bill Cowher’s not going to say anything, and I get it,” Esiason said. “I’m there in the end; somebody has to say something.”

And sure enough, Boomer lowered the boom.

“I said to Shannon, ‘I appreciate you asking him a direct question’… And I understand the difficulties that a former teammate might have in that situation. and I know why Shannon went there, because Shannon has a great friendship with Ray Lewis; they spent time together this week in Ray’s hotel room.” And it was during that time that the “deer antler spray” allegations emerged, but “that’s a whole ‘nother issue… We only have two minutes to discuss these things.

“These guys are coming back from injuries quicker than anybody in the history of sports.”

At that point, Esiason’s radio colleague, Craig Carton, reminded listeners that Lewis recalled doctors telling him that his particular injury was one that no player has ever overcome in order to continue his career.

“Now, Ray Lewis is going to want to tell us that this is God’s plan,” Esiason shot back.

I guess it’s a good thing it wasn’t in God’s plan for Ray Lewis to join CBS Sports. Those pre-show meetings would be awkward.

Joe Flacco Is A Platonic NFL Playoff Quarterback, Says Shaun O'Hara

 

 

 

 

 

 

NFL Network analyst Shaun O'Hara compares Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco to "that girl... stuck in the 'friends' category [that] wants to be in the 'girlfriend' mode" when it comes to performing in the playoffs.

NFL Network analyst Shaun O’Hara compares Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco to “that girl… stuck in the ‘friends’ category [that] wants to be in the ‘girlfriend’ mode” when it comes to performing in the playoffs.

Meet the opponents for this year’s AFC Championship Game.

Same as last year’s opponents for the AFC Championship Game.

And yet, Shaun O’Hara claims that when it comes to Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco in the postseason, everyone says they won’t get fooled again.

That was the NFL Network analyst’s stance on Friday’s edition of “NFL Total Access.” During a roundtable segment that featured guest analyst, St. Louis Rams running back Steven Jackson (who I will be the first to say has a very bright future as a football analyst once his playing days are over) discussing whether or not Flacco will have a better game than Tom Brady and the New England Patriots, as they did during Week 3 of the regular season this year, the former New York Giants center argued that, while the potential for an upset in Foxboro exists, the fifth-year quarterback, who has led the Ravens to a playoff berth in each of his five years with the team, still isn’t getting the credit that he deserves.

“When I look at Joe Flacco, I love what he’s doing,” O’Hara admits. “And yet, he’s not getting any love. He’s like that girl, all right, she’s stuck in that ‘friends’ category, and she wants to be in the ‘girlfriend’ mode, how do you get into that next level? That’s the way we look at Joe Flacco: he gets no love, no respect, and look what he’s done this season… He’s rising to the occasion in the big games; he’s done it before against the Patriots. He’s not scared of this Patriots/Bill Belichick team, he’s ready to play.”

Yes, just when you thought O’Hara was going for yet another one-liner to be had at the expense of Manti Te’o, he actually likens Flacco to the hypothetical gal pal in a famous Chris Rock comedy routine (here’s a snippet of it – obviously NSFW).

Flacco is a respectable 2-3 against Brady and the Patriots, with the Ravens winning only one game out of four in Foxboro (a Wild Card routing of the Pats in 2010). And of course, last year’s AFC Championship Game could have certainly went the Ravens’ way.

We’ll find out on Sunday night whether or not Joe Flacco will step up and bust out of his chastity belt, and prove the critics wrong.