NFL

Why Does Cris Collinsworth Slide in the NFL Booth?

You can always count on the internet to find the silliest things to obsess over, and the Cris Collinsworth slide is pretty high up there on the list. Before every Sunday Night Football broadcast, Al Michaels is centered in the shot and speaking directly into the camera about the upcoming game, alone. And then he references his broadcasting partner, Cris Collinsworth.

You’d have never known that Al Michaels wasn’t by himself if you didn’t know the drill. But then all of a sudden, the camera pans out a bit, and Cris Collinsworth slides into the frame. This little shimmy has turned into an internet meme and left fans wondering why on earth he does this.

Cris Collinsworth explains the slide

Cris Collinsworth chatted with For the Win about the slide and the sensation that it has become. He said that people were coming up to him in the street saying they loved the slide, and at first he had no idea what they were talking about. It was only after a meme went viral last December that he finally got it.

“It’s just fun,” Collinsworth said in the interview. “My dad always said, ‘There’s no limit to the amount of people you can entertain as long as you’re willing to be the butt of the joke.’ And I’ve made a pretty good living off of that over the years.”

When asked about the logistics of the slide, Collinsworth explained that he has a taped off mark that he needs to hit when it’s time for him to be on camera, but he needs to be out of the shot when he’s not on camera. So he sits to the side, waiting for his queue to get to his mark; and the quickest and easiest way to get to it is to slide right over.

Fans on social media are quite amused by it

The slide might not be as big of a draw if it was done by someone else, but Cris Collinsworth’s reputation as a goofball announcer probably adds some allure to it. It is also strange in that most broadcast teams just start with both of them in-frame, or wait until there is a commercial break to change up personnel. Collinsworth’s slide seems to be unique to the Sunday Night Football broadcast.

The meme that went viral back in December was an edited video in which footage of a Collinsworth slide is imposed over an English soccer game being played in an English bar. Collinsworth’s entrance is synced up to when a goal was scored in real life, so the fans at the bar murmur in anticipation and then go absolutely ballistic. Whatever you think of the slide, the video is pretty damn funny.

There are hundreds of reactions to the slide every week on social media. There is even a Twitter account dedicated to it, giving grades out of 10 on how smooth the slide was and how fashionable Cris Collinsworth is looking that evening.

It means so much to fans that they were outraged when Collinsworth didn’t enter the shot with a slide in this year’s NFL Hall of Fame Game during the preseason.

Slide on, you crazy diamond

Cris Collinsworth has been a good sport about becoming a meme
Cris Collinsworth has been a good sport about becoming a meme | Photo by George Gojkovich/Getty Images

Cris Collinsworth is a pretty polarizing figure. Some people can’t stand his broadcasts. Others are thoroughly amused by them, turning his catch-phrases like “now here’s a guy…” into drinking games.

But while reactions are mixed on Cris Collinsworth the color commentator, Cris Collinsworth the slider seems to be a unanimous success. Here’s to enjoying the little things in life.