1. Joe Thomas has to relax.
The NFL Network analyst was filling in on Good Morning Football on Friday morning and went off on Jim Irsay and the Colts for hiring Jeff Saturday as interim coach. However, Thomas’s rant was so over-the-top and bizarre that I would predict most people who watch the clip will end up rooting for Saturday to succeed.
Thomas came out of the gate hot, accusing Irsay of hiring his “drinking buddy.”
We all know that Saturday does not have any coaching experience. That has been made clear all week. But Saturday did play in the NFL for 13 seasons and has covered the league for ESPN for nearly 10 years. So to reduce Saturday to simply being Irsay’s “drinking buddy” like he’s some random guy at a bar is weak.
Irsay is also in recovery from alcoholism, so this was definitely not the best analogy for Thomas to make.
Thomas went on to say Saturday’s hiring was “one of the most disrespectful things I’ve ever seen in my entire life” and that Saturday “is not blameless for accepting the job.”
So Saturday is supposed to turn down the opportunity to become a coach because people like Joe Thomas are mad he doesn’t have experience? Who is Thomas or anyone else to tell Saturday he should turn down a job? Putting any blame on Saturday makes this seem personal for Thomas. There isn’t a law on the books that says someone has to have coaching experience to get a job as an NFL coach.
The Colts’ season is over because they are 3-5-1 and are led by a totally inept starting quarterback. Having Saturday fill in for the final eight games is not a big deal in any way, shape or form.
Thomas then rambled for two minutes about not being able to spend time with your kids when you’re a coach and told some weird story about giving your kids ice cream. Wuite frankly, I had no idea what any of this had to do with Saturday.
Thomas then closed his bash session saying Saturday’s hiring was “the most egregious thing I could ever remember happening in the NFL.”
Really? The MOST egregious thing in NFL history? It’s hard to take Thomas’s argument seriously when it’s so over the top.
2. It’s not like we needed another reason to prove why Ernie Johnson is one of the best ever when it comes to sports media, but the way he shamed Charles Barkley for not giving out full-sized candy bars on Halloween was perfection.
3. Al Michaels gave a nice shoutout that those who wagered on the over/under of 41.5 in Thursday’s Falcons-Panthers game.
4. You know how I’ve said over and over that Dolphins coach Mike McDaniel should be your new favorite person in sports? Here’s more proof.
5. My colleague Jon Wertheim has written a big feature story on ESPN’s Robert Griffin III. Here’s an except of a couple of memorable moments Griffin has had calling college football games this season.
Two weeks later, he called the Washington–Michigan State game. When the Huskies’ quarterback, Michael Penix Jr., threw for 397 yards and four touchdowns, Griffin declared this a display of “Big Penix energy.” In that same game, Griffin referred to a Michigan State offsides penalty as “premature snapulation.” Speaking of crossing the line … referencing Antonio Brown’s recently exposing his genitals in a hotel pool, after Seattle defeated Detroit 48–45, Griffin took to Twitter to note: “AB showed more D than the Seahawks and Lions did today.”
He knows the topic of his sexual references is coming—anticipating the blitz, as it were—and pre-empts the question. “It’s something on the spot. If anybody’s noticed, the last three or four weeks, there haven’t been any of those [sexual references]. And the reason is, it’s not what I plan to do; it’s not something calculated. I didn’t scour down Michigan’s depth chart and said, ‘Ooh, their third-string quarterback’s named Orji!’ … But, Oklahoma has a quarterback named General Booty. What do you want me to call him? General B.? When he’s getting ready to go in the game, well, Booty’s getting loose on the sideline. Play into it. Have fun with it. But never play into it so much where it’s over the top, where people can’t watch the game because it’s too sexualized.
6. A brand-new SI Media Podcast dropped today, and it features a conversation with The Ringers’s Kevin Clark.
Clark weighs in on the Colts’ hiring Jeff Saturday as interim coach and whether the angry reaction from across the board was over the top. Clark also shares his thoughts on Amazon Prime’s Thursday Night Football telecast, the problem with NFL pregame shows, what’s going on with Aaron Rodgers right now, whether the NFL should push back the trade deadline, why he feels passionate about hot chocolate and much more.
Following Clark, Sal Licata from WFAN radio and SNY TV in New York joins Jimmy for their weekly “Traina Thoughts” segment. This week, the guys talk about the anarchy on Twitter thanks to the new verification system. They read recent SI Media Podcast reviews, give out their weekly NFL “best bet” and more.
You can listen to the podcast below or download it on Apple, Spotify and Google.
You can also watch the SI Media Podcast on YouTube.
7. RANDOM VIDEO OF THE DAY: Happy Veterans Day.
Be sure to catch up on past editions of Traina Thoughts and check out the Sports Illustrated Media Podcast hosted by Jimmy Traina on Apple, Spotify or Google. You can also follow Jimmy on Twitter, Instagram and TikTok.