Bryant Gumbel still sucks…

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This will be a short blog, but I just feel compelled to write sometimes, especially when the obvious jumps out at me.

Once again tonight, the NFL Network has subjected us to its woeful ineptitude.

It’s gotten so bad around my condo, that when Bryant Gumbel is calling the game, we almost don’t want to watch it just because it makes our ears bleed. You really forget how much a good announcer (say a Joe Buck or a Gary Thorne or a Jon Miller) can bring to a broadcast.

How much more you wanna watch the game, how much more fun the whole evening becomes when you’re sucked into the drama, the storyline, the information and the "event" of the night. The good ones can make ANY game sound significant and interesting.

It’s just so glaringly apparent to most anyone who truly likes football, how little Bryant Gumbel likes football circa 2007. It’s bad enough Rich Eisen keeps me away from the NFL Network most weeknights, but when there’s a game I wanna watch the least the league and its mothership could provide is an announcer who knows the game, knows the players and actually LIKES football as much as I do.

Bryant Gumbel and Rich Eisen are just a sorry, sorry lot in the passion category. They are patently unwatchable. No matter who their guests are or what they’re saying or the game they’re calling, they just leave me stone cold.

As much as I don’t always agree with Cris Collinsworth, I must admit that his brand of "player/journalism" has grown on me.

I always feel like he speaks with conviction and passion and interest. And the few times I’ve met Collinsworth I’ve honestly liked him more than I thought I would. And when he speaks, I turn the volume UP in general.

He’s very informed. His work on the Sunday Night NBC show is sensational, as are his cohorts Jerome Bettis and Tiki Barber. I feel like I’m "getting it straight" when they speak.

(By the way, Keith Olbermann manages to trump even Gumbel in the "what the hell is HE doing on the broadcast?" category. But I’m not subjected to three hours of him in the framework of an actual game. That TOO would be harsh…but I digress!)

But back to Gumbel? Sheesh! It’s just terrible!

Does anyone out there think Gumbel is any good?

I’m wondering who the NFL Network thinks he appeals to?

I think that there are certainly people who would find Olbermann glib (no one I’d want to be friends with, mind you), but does anyone think Bryant Gumbel should be calling NFL games based on what we’ve heard for the past two seasons?

And how did he EVER get rehired for Season Two after the disasters last year?