Peter King wrote yesterday in Monday Morning Quarterback that Millen is the favorite to replace Cris Collinsworth in the NFL Network booth for their Thursday night package. This has, predictably, not gone over well in the Detroit area.
Here's what King wrote:
In the wake of NFL Network losing Gruden, the channel has considered a few options of analysts to pair with Bob Papa. One is Brian Billick, the quick-on-his-feet former Ravens coach who had a successful debut on Fox last season. Another would be a three-man booth, with Papa, Marshall Faulk(notes) and Joe Theismann, who, presumably, would walk to each game if the network would give him the gig. But I hear Millen is the leader in the NFL Network clubhouse.
Either Millen or Brian Billick would be fine replacements for the departed Collinsworth. They both know football (yes, even Millen -- we'll get to that in a second) and, more importantly, both know how to talk football.
As for the Joe Thiesmann rumor, we're going to act like we didn't hear that. The only thing worse than Thiesmann being back in the booth would be him being back in the booth with Marshall Faulk. (Actually, strike that. The worst possible thing would be Paul McGuire coming back to join Joey T. The mere thought of that frightens me like the threat of nuclear war did to people in the '60s.)
Back to Millen though. I understand why people in Detroit don't like him. It's personal to them. They think he destroyed their team. (In reality, he merely made a bad franchise even worse.) But for everyone else, why does Millen's incompetence in one job make him unfit for another?
Most people dislike Steve Phillips on ESPN's baseball coverage not because he was an awful general manager, but because he's an awful analyst. If Millen is a good commentator (and he is), who cares that he failed as a GM? They're two different skill sets.
People in Detroit care though and there promises to be a ruckus in the city if Millen ends up getting the job. It might end up being the one city that doesn't complain about the availability (or lack thereof) of the NFL Network.
- Matt Millen
- NFL Network
- Brian Billick