Now let’s finish the Sunday NFL pregame quotage with NBC’s Football Night in America. Wanted to pass my condolences to Cris Collinsworth whose father passed away last week.
Here’s the quotage from NBC.
“Eli is the best quarterback in the NFL.” – Rodney Harrison on Eli Manning
“They took over the game in the first half and didn’t let them breathe.” – Tony Dungy on the Texans defense
“I’m worried about their ability to close games. They’re letting teams hang around. You have to finish teams off when you’ve got an opportunity.” –Harrison on the Patriots
NEW YORK – October 21, 2012 – Following are highlights for Football Night in America. Bob Costas opened the show live from inside Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati, Ohio, where the Bengals are hosting the Pittsburgh Steelers. Costas was joined on-site by Sunday Night Football commentators Al Michaels (play-by-play) and Cris Collinsworth (analyst), and Hines Ward, the former Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver, Super Bowl MVP and newest addition to NBC Sports’ NFL team.
Dan Patrick co-hosted the program from Studio 8G at NBC’s 30 Rockefeller Plaza studios and was joined by Football Night in America analysts Tony Dungy and Rodney Harrison, and NFL insiders Peter King of Sports Illustrated and Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk.com. Alex Flanagan reported from Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Mass., on the Jets-Patriots game.
Following are highlights from Football Night in America:
Dungy on Houston’s defensive performance today: “I think it was the passion. They were embarrassed against Green Bay. The front seven got after it today. They made life very uncomfortable for Joe Flacco. They took over the game in the first half and didn’t let them breathe.”
Harrison: “The Baltimore Ravens, they are in trouble. All those injuries on defense to their main players. I don’t know if they are going to be good enough to be able to overcome those injuries.”
Dungy on Rodgers: “The thing I love is, when they were struggling a couple of weeks ago, Aaron Rodgers said, ‘I have to play better.’ He didn’t point the finger at anybody else, and he has done that the last two weeks. He has been on fire with all of his receivers… This is what I love about Rodgers. Moving left, throwing the ball 50 yards on the money. This is why I think he is great.”
Dungy: “The New York Giants used another fourth-quarter touchdown pass from Eli Manning and opportunistic defense to take control of the NFC East.”
Harrison on Eli Manning: “Eli is the best quarterback in the NFL.”
Dungy: “Better than (Aaron) Rodgers?”
Harrison: “Rodgers, Brady. Better than all of them.”
Dungy on game’s final play: “A lot of problems covering (by defensive backs) during the game but when they needed a big play, they got it.”
Harrison: “I’m worried about their ability to close games. They’re letting teams hang around. You have to finish teams off when you’ve got an opportunity.”
Dungy: “They’ll be disappointed when they watch this tape because they had opportunities to win the game.”
King: “Bad loss for the Cleveland Browns in Indianapolis and a bad loss for the coaching future of Pat Shurmur with new owner Jimmy Haslam looking on in his first game as owner. There’s been a lot of speculation about what Shurmur has to do to keep his job. I believe he has to be .500. That’s a long shot obviously, but an even longer shot would be to think that Nick Saban might consider going to a place where he doesn’t know people in the front office and where there’s no guaranteed quarterback of the future. I think it’s much more likely they would look hard at an offensive mind, maybe a guy like Chip Kelly from Oregon.”
For a video of King’s comments: http://nbcsports.msnbc.com/id/22825103/vp/49497335#49497335
Patrick: “They played a little bit of defense today.”
Dungy: “Not much. They gave up 420 yards to Josh Freeman. I promise you, Peyton Manning has this DVR’d. He is watching that game right now.”
Harrison on Chris Johnson’s performance: “This was against Buffalo’s defense. Unfortunately for him, you can’t play them every week…He has this type of talent, but he has to make up his mind if he’s going to do it on a weekly basis.”
Patrick on Adrian Peterson’s post-game comments about his knee getting stronger: “That’s scary news, if you’re a defense.”
Patrick: “John Skelton did not look like a starting quarterback.”
Harrison: “No, he didn’t…He looked very timid today and borderline scared.”
Patrick on Cam Newton’s post-game comments that he will be creating a suggestion box for how to improve the team: “You got something for Cam’s suggestion box, Tony?”
Dungy: “Yes, get those running backs more involved.”
Ward on Roethlisberger/Arians relationship: “Sometimes when you get so close, partiality sets in and you don’t know if Bruce Arians is doing what’s best for the Steelers or if he’s doing what’s best for Ben Roethlisberger. I think that set in and they had to part ways because when you go out there and you can’t decide what’s best for the team and you’re doing what’s best for the players. That can be a problem.”
ON RECENT APPOINTMENT OF FORMER COMMISSIONER PAUL TAGLIABUE IN SAINTS BOUNTY CASE
Florio: “I’m told the National Football League’s Players Association is considering a challenge to Tagliabue based on the fact that he works for the law firm that represents the NFL in the bounty cases. No final decision has been made on that attack.”