Pat McAfree calls out Bill Cowher, Joe Thomas over Jeff Saturday bashing
1. In Friday’s Traina Thoughts, I called Joe Thomas’s lecture on Jeff Saturday’s hiring as Colts interim head coach, via Good Morning Football, “over the top.”
Based on Twitter feedback, many people agreed with my take, while many others thought I was out of line, and there was nothing wrong with Thomas’s opinion.
I can’t wait for those people to react to Pat McAfee’s take on Thomas and Bill Cowher’s Saturday hire.
Obviously, McAfee is a dog owner in this fight. McAfee was a Colts veteran, a Saturday teammate and has a close relationship with Jim Irsay. McAfee can’t be accused of hiding his feelings or being evasive. McAfee opened up on his Monday show.
“It was difficult not to dive into the hypocrisy and need to be puppets on television.
He gave the “I respect Joe Thomas” line and praised Thomas for being a football player, before getting into a fight with him.
McAfee started by mocking and mimicking Thomas’s over-the-top take. McAfee then played a clip of Thomas saying on McAfee’s show that he would like to one day be the Browns’ head coach. It wasn’t clear whether Thomas was joking or not in the clip.
McAfee became serious after the clip.
“I do not think Joe Thomas is a bad person,” McAfee said. McAfee said, “I think he is a puppet; he doesn’t seem to be a bad person.” He felt obligated to speak up because someone told him how disrespected he felt. Instead of looking at the situation from a realistic perspective, I believe he felt that he had to. This is an interim head coach role. The Indianapolis Colts have underwhelmed everybody on earth including their fan base, literally since the jump this season when they tied the f—ing Houston Texans in Houston, and the Houston Texans are the Houston Texans.”
McAfee then turned his attention to Cowher. Again, McAfee first did the “Have a lot of respect for Bill Cowher, blah, blah, blah” thing before pointing out that Cowher was hired as head coach of the Steelers at just 34 years old.
“He got hired at 34 in his hometown to be the head coach of the f—ing Pittsburgh Steelers, so if he maybe caught a lot of fire whenever he got hired for not earning and deserving the job that he took and he now wants to project that on Jeff Saturday, he can take that up with himself.
But Bill Cowher. He asked why John Fox didn’t get the job. Why didn’t Gus Bradley get it? It’s their first year at the building and the team has been a mess since then.
Jim Irsay wants to hire an interim coach and says, “You know what, these guys just arrived here and although they’re doing OK, the defense isn’t bad. Do I want these guys to work for me? They are just working with the D. They don’t know the building. They don’t know what we do. They literally just f—ing got here and our team hasn’t been good.’ Jim Irsay says, do I want to hire them or does Jim Irsay say, ‘You know what, give me a guy who played 13 years here. Give me a man who is in our Ring of Honor. Give me a guy who has won a Super Bowl. I want a guy who has sweated, bled, and puked on this field for the program, who has also built the Lucas Oil Stadium, which is where we call home, along with Peyton Manning and other players. Give me a guy who wants to be a coach, has been a coach and maybe understands what this program is supposed to be and he hires him, and they all take shots.”
McAfee continued for a couple of more minutes, repeating his claim that some people on TV are puppets and parrots, and correctly pointing out that “the backlash was absurd,” before finally ending his defense of Saturday with this:
“It was a wild week last week. Everybody was taking shots at a couple of friends of mine in the organization, and they get a f—ing win, the other quarterback’s crying at a press conference, I mean this is a lot better than where we had been, so congrats to Jeff, and f— off to all you parrots and on TV.”
You can agree or disagree with what McAfee said and you can point out that he’s not objective here, but you can’t deny that he knows how to do compelling TV/radio.
It’s weird, when I watched Thomas’s segment from GMFB, it felt forced and over the top and not completely honest. McAfee is telling people not to lie, and it feels natural and honest.
That’s the sign of a great host.
2. If you want to hear someone else completely go off on Bill Cowher and Joe Thomas, Chris “Mad Dog” Russo spent the first 12 minutes of his SiriusXM show Monday doing that.
3. As usual, Bill Belichick is 100% correct.
Not only does it make sense that coaches should be able to challenge plays under two minutes; this rule change would also allow us to watch the hilarity of Belichick pulling out his challenge flag from his sock more often.
4. I had Rutgers on Saturday, so I enjoyed this week’s “Bad Beats” even more than usual.
5. HBO has released the trailer for its upcoming four-part Shaquille O’Neal documentary, and it looks good.
6. The latest SI media Podcast features an interview with Kevin Clark, The Roster ‘.
Clark discusses the Colts’ appointment of Jeff Saturday as interim coach. He also discusses the anger from the board and whether it was justified. Clark also discusses Amazon Prime’s Thursday night Football broadcast, the problem of NFL pregame shows and what’s happening with Aaron Rodgers right at the moment. He also discusses why he is passionate about hot chocolate, and whether the NFL should delay the trade deadline.
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 discuss the anarchy of Twitter through the new verification system. You can also read SI media Podcast reviews, and more.
You can also watch the SI Media Podcast on YouTube.
7. RANDOM VIDEO OF THE DAY: I don’t condone this behavior in any way, shape or form, but how can you not be impressed that someone can fit 20 Chicken McNuggets in one hand?
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.
The author of 5 books, 3 of which are New York Times bestsellers. I’ve been published in more than 100 newspapers and magazines and am a frequent commentator on NPR.