Cris Collinsworth is typically a very good NFL TV color commentator. Cris Collinsworth, however, had a pretty rough Super Bowl LII on Sunday night.
Al Michaels’ partner on NBC particularly irked Eagles fans by expressing doubt as two Eagles touchdowns were reviewed, and incredulity after both were upheld. And Philadelphians, even after getting the Lombardi Trophy they’ve craved for decades, are still peeved about it.
A change.org petition calling for Collinsworth to be barred from commentating on Eagles games in the future had more than 37,000 signatures Tuesday afternoon. It calls the former Cincinnati Bengals All-Pro receiver “the most biased and horrible commentator ever.”
“Being a Philadelphia Eagles fan and having to listen to him constantly talk about the Patriots and hardly ever the Eagles during the game made it almost unbearable,” the petition reads. “As a professional, he has a duty to if not be unbiased at least try to make the game enjoyable for all viewers. His constant fawning over Tom Brady and the Patriots the entire game was disgusting, making it sound like he was a local Boston radio personality and not a commentator for a nationally syndicated football game.”
It then calls for NBC to “discipline” Collinsworth, or “at the very least” confine him to Patriot broadcasts.
But it’s not the only expression of anti-Collinsworth sentiment. It appears Pennsylvania congressman Brendan Boyle, along with many fans, supported the idea behind the petition before it even launched:
Cris Collinsworth can never be allowed to call a game again. It’s a catch and a TD. #FlyEaglesFly
— US Rep Brendan Boyle (@RepBrendanBoyle) February 5, 2018
A fired-up fan in the streets after the game made a point to call out Collinsworth in a TV interview:
'CRIS COLLINSWORTH, TAKE THAT BABY'
This dude brought the energy for his local TV interview pic.twitter.com/x4Z6HH3FzR
— Sports Illustrated (@SInow) February 5, 2018
Eagles fans first took issue with Collinsworth after Corey Clement’s second-quarter touchdown catch. Clement got two feet in bounds in the back of the end zone, but couldn’t get a third in. The ball moved slightly in his arms, leading Patriots fans and Collinsworth to believe it should have been overturned and called incomplete. But, as Fox’s Dean Blandino explained, Clement never lost control of the ball, meaning the call should have been upheld. It was, but Collinsworth seemed baffled.
That call was at least questionable, though. Collinsworth’s analysis during Zach Ertz’s game-winning touchdown was inexplicable. He had to have been the only neutral fan who thought Ertz’s TD catch might (or should) be overturned.
Even Eagles defensive end Chris Long, watching a replay of the game, poked fun at Collinsworth’s comments during the review:
Ertz takes 17 steps and Collinsworth says he thinks they have to overturn it
— Chris Long (@JOEL9ONE) February 6, 2018
On one hand, Eagles fans had a right to be annoyed during Sunday’s game. On the other, this is silly, and surely Philadelphians will forget their beef with Collinsworth when they’re surrounded by millions of their closest friends as parade busses stream down Broad Street on Thursday.
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