Finally, Matt Millen is not calling games for Thursday Night Football. What a relief I, along with most NFL fans, must be feeling right now.
Millen and his partner, Joe Theismann, are going to continue to work for the NFL Network, but not together. Their duo could be one of the worst in broadcasting history. To replace them, the NFL will bring in Brad Nessler and Mike Mayock. It's about time Thursday nights became enjoyable without the mute button.
Millen is usually known for repeating the same uneducated lines over and over until the viewers ears bleed and/or they are seen ramming their head into the wall, and it's not just on Thursdays. My worst experience comes on Saturday when Millen covers college football; specifically my Iowa Hawkeyes.
The scene was set; the Arizona Wildcats were on the road to play Iowa in Kinnick Stadium. Iowa, like it did most games last season, ended up losing late in the fourth quarter when Arizona gave the Hawkeyes their first loss. That was heartbreaking in a season filled with expectations, but it wouldn't have been nearly as bad if Matt Millen wasn't doing the old "talking without saying anything."
In the process of that game, there was one replay where the bottom of a player's wrist hit the ground. Let me paraphrase what Mr. Millen had to say:
"If the back of your hand hits the ground, you are down. If you put the front of your hand down, you can keep going, but if you keep the back of your hand on the ground, the play is over. So you cannot touch the ground with the back of your hand, because if you do, you're down, but if the opposite side hits, the play keeps going and you're still eligible to keep running the ball."
A commercial break came about during the review of the play. Then Matt Millen came back.
"They're still reviewing the play, but as I was saying, if the back of your hand touches the ground, you're down. However, I don't think his did. I think the front of his hand touched which meant the play was still alive. You see, his palm can touch but the back of his hand cannot."
It goes without saying, that was the worst replay of my life. It could not have dragged out any longer. The referee could have made a call to give Arizona 20 more points and I would have been fine with it as long as Millen would have stayed quiet.
You know what makes it worse? His mustache. Mustaches tend to be cool, and character-defining. Take a look at Mike Ditka; you don't mess with that mustache. Millen? He seems like somebody who's lunch money is still taken on a daily basis following the swirley he gets before work starts. I bet Stuart Scott pushes him in the ESPN lockers before each game Millen calls.
The only downfall of this move is not having anybody to make fun of. Making himself so easy to make fun of is what Millen does best. Oh well, I'm sure I can just wait until Saturday to do that.
Even with the Lions, Millen was awful. How did the picks of Joey Harrington, Charles Rogers, Roy Williams, Mike Williams, Boss Bailey, Shaun Rogers, Drew Stanton, Gosder Cherilus, Teddy Lehman and Ernie Sims work out for you? Keep in mind, those were all either first- or second-round picks. Calvin Johnson was a good one, though! You had to get a good wide receiver eventually.
Here is something to Millen's credit; he did win a Super Bowl ring for every team he played for.
I'm sorry that I dedicated an entire article to bashing you, Matt Millen, but everything you do or say has bothered me in some way. You're the John Grabow of announcing (did you think I would go through this whole article without a bad Cubs reference)? I'm sure you're a great guy to get your haircut or have a barbecue with, but I will never talk about sports with you.
Now, if only you would get off of Saturdays.