It seems like Cris Collinsworth always makes a comment or two during Sunday Night Football broadcasts that end up becoming pretty polarizing. Heck, almost every NFL broadcaster has probably said something on TV that later got them trending on Twitter. Well, Collinsworth recently made some comments during the Week 17 game between the Philadelphia Eagles and the Washington Football Team, and those comments drew a strong reaction from media personality and former Indianapolis Colts punter Pat McAfee.
Eagles coach Doug Pederson played Nate Sudfeld against Washington
The Week 17 game between the Washington Football Team and the Philadelphia Eagles had a lot riding on it. With a win, Washington clinched the NFC East division title and a spot in the playoffs. An Eagles’ win, though, would have given the New York Giants the division title and the playoff spot.
Sudfeld did not play well, either. He went 5-of-12 through the air for 32 yards and turned it over twice, which helped Washington win 20-14 and clinch a spot in the playoffs.
Pederson’s decision led to many people questioning whether he even wanted to win the game, especially since the loss gave the Eagles the No. 6 pick in the 2021 NFL draft and a win would have given them the ninth pick. He denied the notion that he was trying to lose, though.
“Yes, I was coaching to win,” Pederson said, according to ESPN. “Yes, that was my decision solely. Nate has been here four years and I felt he deserved an opportunity to get some snaps.”
However, Cris Collinsworth had some strong comments about Pederson’s decision.
Cris Collinsworth and Al Michaels blasted Pederson’s decision
Like many people at home, NBC announcers Cris Collinsworth and Al Michaels couldn’t believe Pederson’s move.
“I couldn’t have done it. I couldn’t have done what Philadelphia did,” Collinsworth said during the game, according to Sporting News. “I just simply could not have done it. You’ve got men out there that are fighting their guts out, trying to win the game. And I’m not saying — I’m not blaming anybody. I, personally, could not have done what they did.”
Michaels also had a strong reaction.
“I agree under the circumstances, absolutely,” Michaels said, according to Sporting News. “[If] they’re getting blown out, yeah [bench Hurts]. And we mentioned yesterday, Doug said he wanted to get Sudfeld into the game. But in this circumstance? Come on.”
Collinsworth also somewhat joked about how he might hear from the league for making the comments he did that night. This is in addition to bringing up potential conspiracy theories that might have come out had the playoff situation been slightly different.
“Al, I’m gonna take this one step further, as if I haven’t gone far enough yet. … I’m trying not to get fired tonight,” Collinsworth said, according to Sporting News. “But, if this had been the Dallas Cowboys that had won today, can you imagine the conspiracy theories and the things that would be going on right now between those two organizations?”
Pat McAfee had a strong reaction to Cris Collinsworth’s comments
It’s unclear whether Collinsworth will actually hear from the NFL regarding his comments or not, but Pat McAfee had some strong thoughts about that potentially happening.
“Cris Collinsworth is allegedly in s— with the NFL for talking about the tanking happening on the field,” McAfee said on the Jan. 5 episode of The Pat McAfee Show. “I’ll tell you what NFL, I don’t think you have a case against Cris and Al because Al and Cris are just supposed to go ahead and set the environment for a game that is being watched. I don’t know what you want them to do. You want them to go out there and completely lie?”
He continued: “I do believe Cris Collinsworth and Al Michaels talking about what was happening in the fashion that they were, potentially set a tone a little bit for how everybody else viewed it. But they were just calling it how they see it, which you can’t blame them. … I’ll be excited to see what the NFL says to Cris. Is he going to have to apologize for it? Is Cris going to have to lead off a game saying, ‘No matter what I see here — here’s a guy in the booth that no matter what I see today, I’m going to lie about [it].'”
He makes some good points. Collinsworth and Michaels have a job to do, and giving opinions about the game they’re covering is a part of that job.
Whether Collinsworth actually hears from the NFL or not, at least he has Pat McAfee on his side.
Stats courtesy of ESPN