Cris Collinsworth kept making puzzling remarks during last night's game

93.7 The Fan
93.7 The Fan

Once upon a time, Cris Collinsworth was maybe the best analyst in the NFL. His detailed breakdowns of schemes were a welcome respite from the cliches that usually permeate throughout NFL telecasts, and it’s apparent he prepared for every broadcast.

But just like players, broadcasters have their primes, too. Collinsworth is past his.

The longtime analyst made some puzzling statements during the Steelers’ 23-20 overtime win Sunday over the Seahawks, but few were more questionable than his proclamation about Cam Heyward. After the Steelers’ stalwart pass-rusher brought down Geno Smith with a sack in the second quarter, Collinsworth guaranteed Heyward will be enshrined in Canton.

“Cam Heyward — a no-question Hall of Famer, in my mind,” Collinsworth said.

His partner, Mike Tirico, followed up with more reasonable praise, calling a Heyward a “good player.”

While it’s great to see Heyward garner the respect he deserves, it was a bit overzealous for Collinsworth to declare he’s a surefire Hall of Famer. Heyward is a two-time first-team All-Pro and fifth in Steelers history with 60 sacks. With a couple of more productive seasons, he could be in the conversation for Canton.

But it’s too soon to say that now. Color analysts dampen their credibility with unnecessarily grandiose statements about players. It’s a trap that Collinsworth has fallen into as the years progress. I mean, he called Geno Smith a “veteran presence.”

The now-journeyman QB is about as reassuring as a three-alarm fire — despite his respectable effort Sunday.

Though Smith played well in the second half, he struggled in the first two quarters, and the Steelers were leading 14-0 at halftime. That prompted Collinsworth to make his strangest statement of the evening: he says he didn’t realize how important Russell Wilson was to the Seahawks.


“My first thought is, ‘How much do they miss Russell Wilson?,’” Collinsworth said. “I didn’t know he was quite as significant to this team as what he’s actually proving to be so far for a half of football.”

Basically, Collinsworth called Wilson a replacement quarterback. That’s about as silly as Jamal Adams declaring he’s the “best in the nation.”

It’s apparent that Collinsworth has lost his observational zip in recent years. He was confused at the end of regulation, wrongly declaring the Seahawks wouldn’t have been able to spike the football with one second remaining, even though that’s exactly what they did before the officials reviewed DK Metcalf’s catch. The stoppage in play helped the Seahawks, because it gifted them time to properly set up for their game-tying field goal.

The time on the clock was irrelevant.

And no, Cris, the mind-numbing sequence at the end of the game wasn’t “fantastic.”

At this point, Collinsworth is more NFL shill than analyst. He seldom criticizes officials and overpraises players. His performance was about as frustrating as watching Smith and Alex Collins carve up the Steelers’ defense.

Comments / 146

Edward Izbackok

they are not nor never were essential to the football experience! no real lifelong football fan needs two men telling us what's going on! I can follow the game perfectly with volume on MUTE

James Dawson

I don't see anything wrong with his opinion. Many share his opinions. I believe Cam Heywood is a Hall of Famer. Many would agree with him on Russell Wilson. Seattle has weapons around Wilson so how significant is Wison? Fair question. Wilson is no Mahomes, Murray or Allen. He has better skilled players than these quarterbacks. If you play fantasy football then you can easily back up what Collinsworth said. It is just an opinion. One of several that people have. The debate should be respected by all whether you agree or disagree.

John Ellis

agreed. his praise seems insincere and trite. the rabbit trails he takes often distract from the game


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