Shutdown Corner

Jon Gruden really, really, really, REALLY likes Texas

Doug Farrar
Shutdown Corner

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(ESPN)

In his capacity as ESPN's most "interesting" football analyst, former Oakland Raiders and Tampa Bay Buccaneers coach Jon Gruden loves him some hyperbole. From his endless litany of nicknames for players, to the occasional incomprehensible take when he gets too excited about the game to be understood, Gruden certainly brings a passion to the booth.

Never was this more evident than in the intro to ESPN's "Monday Night Football" telecast. Before the Chicago Bears and Dallas Cowboys kicked off at Cowboys Stadium, Gruden went off in an impressive fashion, even for a network where VOLUME EQUALS ANALYSIS.

Play-by-play man Mike Tirico asked Gruden to compare Jay Cutler and Tony Romo, and then took a step back, because he knew what was coming.

"He's a modern-day John Wayne," Gruden said of Cutler. "Look at the tape -- he's a modern-day Josey Wales! He gets hit a lot! Hard! But he gets up, and he stays after ya. And I've seen ... this ... kid ... get ... mad. He doesn't just get mad, he gets PLUM-DOG MAD. Just like Josey Wales did. Ya got that, Tirico? When he starts feelin' it, this GUNSLINGER ends your night. He creates more plays for the Chicago Bears than Johnny Lujack did. Some of these throws take your breath away! And if Jay Cutler can make enough plays, the Chicago Bears can win tonight, and win any week.

"And Tony Romo ... I've seen him break his collarbone! I've seen him break a rib!  Puncture a lung! This is the TOUGHEST COWBOY THEY HAVE IN TEXAS!!! But at the end of the night, Tony Romo gets more done on his own than any quarterback in pro football. LOOK AT TONY ROMO CREATE PLAYS WITH HIS LEGS AND HIS ARM. He has no fear ... I love this song ["God Blessed Texas" by Little Texas] ... GOD BLESS TONY ROMO ... They need to change the words of this song. Because without Tony Romo, the Cowboys got no chance. But he is the most dazzling playmaking quarterback in football and I LovewatchinghimRomo.

"GOD BLESS TEXAS!!! Make my day, Tirico ... go ahead. Make my day!!!"

That was a different Eastwood character at the end there, but at that point, it was like John Blutarsky in "Animal House." When you're on a roll, you're on a roll.

We're glad that Red Bull is working out for you, coach. Now, on to the ... game?

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