|Jon Gruden has a weird obsession with westerns and NFL QBs. (US Presswire)|
Never let it be said that Jon Gruden, former NFL coach-turned color analyst for Monday Night Football, isn't the most positive guy you'll ever meet. In a sense, his over-the-top "[random football player] is the best to ever step on the field!" send-ups are a nice change from the pessimism that pervades sports commentary in general. That said, the Earth's orbit around the sun is less predictable than Gruden's grandiose proclamations about players the rest of us are content to call average.
Gruden was in rare form Monday night, even by Gruden's "hopped up on Mountain Dew" standards.
While most folks like to bash Jay Cutler for, well, being Jay Cutler, Gruden compared the Bears quarterback to a bunch of cowboys. Yes, we'd imagine the irony of Chicago facing Dallas in Texas was lost on him. No matter. Here's Gruden during his pregame screaming monologue (transcription courtesy Yahoo! Sports -- and be sure to watch the video for the full effect):
"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?" he no doubt asked rhetorically.
"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."
Gruden didn't waste all his powers of hyperbole on just one quarterback. Nope, Tony Romo got a name-check, too.
"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!!!"
And then Gruden's head exploded.
In general, we have no problem with Gruden's slapstick act. He drops enough Xs and Os into the game to more than make up for the theatrics. Plus, now we have someone to join us on the Jay Cutler bandwagon.
For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnNFL on Twitter, like us on Facebook, and subscribe to the Pick-6 Podcast on iTunes. You can follow Ryan Wilson on Twitter here: @ryanwilson_07.