If you’re a regular visitor to this blog, you’ll know that I will rail on Bob Costas most of the time for his halftime commentaries on Sunday Night Football. Some of you will agree with what he said tonight. Others will disagree. Count me as one who thought he sounded pompous this evening. While I agree with his premise on Buffalo Bills’ wide receiver Stevie Johnson’s ridiculous celebration today during the game with the New York Jets, to lump it with other TD celebrations went over the top for me. I felt Bob sounded like the New York Post’s Phil Mushnick complaining about the sky being blue every week.
You may disagree with my opinion. You’re entitled to yours. I’m not one who liked the commentary this week and if you do a search for “Bob Costas” on Twitter, it’s not kind.
BOB COSTAS’ HALFTIME ESSAY ON KNUCKLEHEADS
For those of you too busy keeping up with the Kardashians to notice, we live in a culture that in many ways grows more stupid and graceless by the moment. Sports both reflects and influences that sorry trend, so on playing fields everywhere, true style is in decline, while mindless exhibitionism abounds.
In the late ’60′s, the Giants had a receiver named Homer Jones. He invented the spike — and it was great; a simple, elegant punctuation that somehow has devolved into this…(video of excessive celebrations)
Given the tone of the times, it’s probably too much to expect that most players would appreciate that back in the day, this guy (Barry Sanders) was much cooler than this guy (Mark Gastineau), or that there is a difference between spontaneous and/or good-natured displays of enthusiasm and calculated displays of obnoxious self-indulgence. No, that train has already gone so far down the wrong track, there’s probably no turning back.
So our suggestion here is a more modest one: hey, knuckleheads, is it too much to ask that you confine your buffoonery to situations that don’t directly damage your team? Week after week, game after game, we see guys who think nothing of incurring penalties for unsportsmanlike conduct, costing their team’s valuable yardage, even late in close games.
Today’s most conspicuous culprit: Buffalo’s Stevie Johnson, who after a TD catch versus the Jets, thought it would be a good idea to go Marcel Marceau, pantomiming, among other things, Plaxico Burress shooting himself in the leg. But in this case, it was Johnson, who shot himself in the foot, as his display cost his team a 15-yard penalty on the ensuing kickoff. And given a short field, the Jets proceeded to score in a critical game that wound up, 28-24, New York.
Which raises this question: where are the coaches in all this? Guys are routinely benched or called out for blown assignments. When is a coach going to make an overdue statement and sit a guy down on the grounds of pure selfishness and unprofessionalism detrimental to his team?
By the way, late in the loss to the Jets, Johnson dropped a pass that could have led to a Buffalo win. Shockingly, he didn’t follow it with a rehearsed “my bad” dance of apology. Maybe he just forgot.
If I find the video, I’ll post it here. The written text loses some meaning in the translation without the video.