As we all know, the NFL on CBS is home for quite a few Steelers games, as they are the home for the AFC package of for the NFL.
Today we take a break from talking about the games, and instead talk about the guys that call the game, and give them a grade on how they do when it comes to calling the action on the field.
1. Jim Nantz//Phil Simms – The team we see the most, as they cover probably 9-11 games a season for the Steelers based on who they are playing. Natz is solid, and I like the way Simms complements him. I think as far as having knowledge and knowing the game they are good, but at times this two-some can put you to sleep, as they seem to lack that excitement level for the ‘A’ team of the CBS NFL product. Grade: B
2. Greg Gumbel//Dan Dierdorf – Always enjoyed Dierdorf on ‘Monday Night Football’ as the third guy, but at times can get a little grating as the number two behind Gumbel. I like Gumbel. I can take his quirks at time, but think overall he knows the game, knows his stuff, and can lift up the level of excitement when the game is on the line. Problem is, Dierdorf brings him down a grade. Grade: B –
3. Ian Eagle//Dan Fouts – Very good pairing, and while Fouts can jump on Eagle at times, I think this is a solid three team for CBS. Eagle knows his facts, seems to prepare well, and calls a pretty good game. This may be my favorite team of the bunch, as I think Eagle and Harlan are the best two PBP guys CBS has. Grade B+
4. Marv Albert//Rich Gannon – Gannon is my favorite color guy of the bunch, but I still can’t get use to Albert calling NFL games, despite the fact he’s done it for quite awhile now. Albert seems a little slow at times, and his NBA speed seems to almost confuse him as he can’t find the words in between the plays. As for Gannon, as stated, my favorite of the crews, smart, witty, knows the game well. Grade: B-
5. Kevin Harlan//Solomon Wilcots – Think Harlan is way better than fifth as far as a team goes. Great energy, brings it every game, and he knows what he’s talking about. Problem – Wilcots is terrible. Just thinks he knows it all, talks over Harlan, and it’s just a nightmare when you see him next to your game for your team. Good thing, he calls maybe 1-2 Steelers games per year. Grade: C –
6. Bill Macatee//Steve Tasker – I hear this crew quite a bit being in Cleveland, and they are ok, but nothing to really write home about. Tasker is better as a color guy than Macatee is as a PBP guy. Put Tasker with Harlan and you have IMO the best pairing on CBS. For now with Macatee, it’s a average pair that we rarely see call Steelers games. Grade: C
7. Spero Dedes//Steve Beuerlein – As Steeler fans, we almost never get to hear this team, and for good reason. Dedes is never going to be a main guy, and for good reason. He misses plays, has moments where he doesn’t seem to know the game, and just isn’t all that good. Sorry Spero. As for Beuerlein, he’s like he was as a QB – average at best. He makes you miss a guy like Gannon or even Tasker. Grade: D
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