NEWS, NOTES & QUOTES FROM THIS WEEK’S
“INSIDE THE NFL” ON SHOWTIME
Wednesday, Dec. 10 at 9 p.m. ET/PT on SHOWTIME
NEW YORK (Dec. 10, 2008) – Host James Brown, analysts Phil Simms, Cris Collinsworth and Warren Sapp break down this week’s key match-ups including Dallas Cowboys vs. New York Giants. Plus, reaction to Clinton Portis–Jim Zorn public criticism, the Buffalo Bills Canadian home game, Collinsworth returns to his throne in “King For A Day” and much more on this week’s edition of INSIDE THE NFL on SHOWTIME—Wednesday, Dec. 10 at 9 p.m. ET/PT.
(On Washington Redskins Clinton Portis and Jim Zorn publicly criticizing one another)
SIMMS: … The fact is Jim Zorn, a young coach, talks about his players a little bit to the press. He is too honest (to the press.) One thing I think you have to learn as a head coach, a quarterback or even a player in the NFL, you can’t be honest … to the press. You just can’t tell them everything.
(Is the Zorn-Portis relationship repairable?)
COLLINSWORTH: It depends on how Jim Zorn handles this from here. He has to make sure that everybody understands that this Clinton Portis is an absolute warrior. This guy went to work the last few weeks where he could barely walk. Maybe he wasn’t good enough to get it done in that game, but I think the comment should have been, “We’ve asked enough out of Clinton Portis. He’s been absolutely remarkable. Sorry it didn’t work out this week, but he’s still our guy.”
(On Buffalo Bills hosting home game in Toronto)
COLLINSWORTH: In the history of the National Football League there has never been anything dumber than the Buffalo Bills selling out their home game against the Miami Dolphins to go play in Toronto and take the cash. Season over. Thank you very much, Buffalo Bills. I hope they spend the money wisely.
(On New York Giants – Dallas Cowboys)
COLLINSWORTH: There were three parts of the Giants football team that were intimidating in my mind. One was the defensive side. Obviously, they played great. Two was the running game because of Brandon Jacobs. And three was the fact that if you tried to stack the line of scrimmage, you had Plaxico Burress to deal with down the field….. Now, you have to say that at least one and-a-half parts of that intimidation factor that is the New York Giants – Plaxico Burress, and I am going to give half to Brandon Jacobs – are gone. Because we don’t know how much longer he is going to be able to play at full strength this season. In my mind, are there questions? There certainly are. At this point, I think much more of it now falls on Eli Manning; more than he’s had to carry this entire season, and that’s a question.
SAPP: The strength of their ball club is the offense and defensive line and those two things are intact late in the year. That is when you go to the horses that pull your carriage and they have been pulling it all year long.
SIMMS: Brandon Jacobs. It’s like Rugby when you watch him behind that offensive line, the pile just moves. If they lose him, to me, that would be a bigger loss than Plaxcio Burress.
(On Tony Romo)
SAPP: I have to ask you all, where is this guy’s signature game – his signature performance that we talk about? The Cowboys haven’t won a playoff game since 1996.
SIMMS: Can’t win the big game! You want to get me fired up? Start saying that phrase, because that is one of the worst things that can ever be labeled on a quarterback. They said that about Peyton Manning. They said that about Dan Marino. They said it about John Elway, until the last couple of years. Tony Romo has only been a full-time starter for two years. Let’s give him a little time to see what happens in his career before we label him the guy that can’t get it done in a big spot.
COLLINSWORTH: I wonder if it’s in Tony’s head now, that’s my question. That he lost another significant game when they had the lead. They could not possibly lose that game to the Pittsburgh Steelers. In 19 seconds they give up two touchdowns, one of them his…You just have to wonder how he reacts emotionally to this one. Because now you have the World Champion Giants coming in. Now you have the Baltimore Ravens and that “D” and then you have to go play the Philadelphia Eagles on the road in order to get into the playoffs. If he loses any one of those games, that label is going to start to stick.
SIMMS: Let me say this about Tony Romo, and I watch all these quarterbacks, Ben Roethlisberger to me has done one of the best jobs in the NFL this year of pulling back and quit trying to be that guy that is the playmaker. And when Tony Romo is out on that field sometimes, I saw it against the Steelers, when he is trying to be Tony Romo that is not good. You have to see the big picture, what is best for the football team and sometimes, truly not losing the game is more important and better than trying to win it. You have to know when to be extremely careful. He hasn’t done that yet in his career.
SAPP: Tony Romo trying to be Tony Romo turns into Tony Oh-No.