“They have as much character on their team as any team that I’ve seen in recent years, but I don’t think they can overcome these injuries.” – Tony Dungy on the Eagles
“If I’m the Ravens, I’m riding with Lamar Jackson.” – Rodney Harrison
“Don’t forget the Giants. It’s not over in the East yet…The Giants showing a little life here.” – Mike Tirico
“Their defense is good enough to go to the Super Bowl.” – Harrison on the Cowboys
STAMFORD, Conn. – Nov. 18, 2018 – Mike Tirico hosted the Week 11 edition of Football Night in America tonight from NBC Sports’ International Broadcast Center in Stamford, Conn., in advance of the Sunday Night Football matchup between the Minnesota Vikings and Chicago Bears.
Tirico was joined on the set by analysts Tony Dungy and Rodney Harrison, as well as NFL Insider Mike Florio. Liam McHugh co-hosted Football Night on site from Soldier Field in Chicago, Ill. He was joined by the SNF team of Al Michaels, Cris Collinsworth and Michele Tafoya.
Pre-game coverage on Football Night included taped pieces that featured Pro Football Hall of Famer and former Bears LB Mike Singletary and the musical talents of Vikings QB Kirk Cousins. McHugh also conducted pre-game interviews with Bears head coach Matt Nagy and Cousins.
Following are Notes & Quotes from the Week 11 edition of Football Night in America:
Collinsworth: “We saw last year the Philadelphia Eagles go from last all the way to Super Bowl champs. Well, the Bears are going to try to one up them here – last place four years in a row and trying to make a run.”
Collinsworth on comparing Mitch Trubisky to Patrick Mahomes and Deshaun Watson: “You know they are a lot alike because they make so many plays with their legs. At least one time tonight you’ll see Mitchell Trubisky spin out, run around, and make some plays. He does it all the time. It’s just great to watch.”
Harrison on Bears offense: “When I look at the Bears offense, it’s very frustrating as a defender because they come out with all these different formations. Then they come out with all these different motions. Then they come out with all these gadget plays. It puts so much pressure on the defense. It almost makes you less aggressive.”
Harrison: “I would not hire a defensive-minded coach to be a head coach in this league…This league is about scoring points, and developing young quarterbacks. You look at what Andy Reid, Matt Nagy, and Sean McVay, all these guys have done, developing these young quarterbacks. And I think that’s where the league is going to go to more.”
Tirico following pre-game video of Kirk Cousins firing up his team by shouting, “They’re not the reason we (moved) to primetime, we are.”: “I’ve never heard flex scheduling used to fire up teammates, but Cousins went there. I love it.”
Dungy on Philadelphia’s season and injuries: “They have as much character on their team as any team that I’ve seen in recent years, but I don’t think they can overcome these injuries. They have more injuries in the secondary today. I just think they’re running out of people.”
Harrison: “This offensive line is the best in football.”
Harrison on Dallas: “Their defense is good enough to go to the Super Bowl.”
Dungy on Ron Rivera going for two points and the win: “I thought Ron might have been rattled because his kicker missed two easy kicks, but to say we’re just going to go for the win on the road, I don’t agree with that. Tie the game up, play defense, get the ball back and win it that way.”
Harrison: “I really didn’t mind the fact that they went for the (two-point conversion). Cam Newton had a perfect opportunity just to place it in there. I think their problems exist a little deeper — it’s going back a couple weeks against the Pittsburgh Steelers and then today, they have to learn how to protect Cam Newton. It just seems like he gets rattled under all that pressure.”
Harrison on Lamar Jackson: “If I’m the Ravens, I’m riding with Lamar Jackson. I know Coach Harbaugh. He’s a very loyal guy. He won a Super Bowl with Joe Flacco. But if I’m him, the type of excitement and energy he (Jackson) brought and the way he drives defenses is crazy. He’s your first-round draft choice. I’m riding with him the rest of the season.”
Dungy: “They’ve done a great job in a couple of different ways. Chris Ballard, the general manager — drafting some offensive linemen, better protection. But also Frank Reich, coming in with a plan (to solve), how are we going to get the most out of Andrew Luck and protect him?”
Harrison on Jalen Ramsey: “He’s an excellent player. But if he just shuts up and plays, he’ll be the best cornerback…Just be quiet and play football.”
Dungy: “They hung in there like a veteran team, but I didn’t like Jacksonville down the stretch. It reminded me of last year in the AFC Championship Game. They were up and went conservative against New England.”
Harrison: “They don’t believe in Blake Bortles…I can see why the Jacksonville Jaguars defense is so frustrated. They played their hearts out today, and to see that type of effort (from the offense) and that conservative play calling is ridiculous.”
Tirico: “Don’t forget the Giants. It’s not over in the East yet…The Giants showing a little life here.”
Dungy: “And they’re playing hard. That is the impressive thing to me. Long game on Monday night, and come back and play hard again today.
Harrison on Giants QB Eli Manning: “(It’s) just amazing how Eli looks when you protect him and give him time.”
—FOOTBALL NIGHT IN AMERICA—