This is Eric Dickerson, Hall of Famer and obvious byproduct of an SMU education. From this photo, he may also have played Sam Ace nemesis Jheri Curl in "Hollywood Shuffle." You might remember Eric from his stint on Monday Night Football, where he somehow made the role of sideline reporter seem even more useless.
Well, get ready for an AFC season free of Eric and his ilk, because CBS has decided to get rid of sideline reporters for all of their NFL broadcasts, with a lone exception for the Super Bowl.
You'll have to excuse me for a moment while I pass out and slowly regain consciousness. It's been so long since a sports programming executive has made a logical decision that it's obvious to me that I have fallen into some sort of bizarre new dimension. If anything, I expected CBS to announce that they were using more sideline reporters, or that they had found a way to turn Jim Nantz into even more of an elitist dipshit, or that they decided to let all of Shannon Sharpe's 46 illegitimate children join him in the studio as contributors.
But no, CBS has decided to employ common sense. Which is both shocking and somewhat frightening to me. It's certainly something ESPN would never do. And I can't see FOX giving up on the black hole of aggressive stupidity that is Tony Siragusa ("I don't know about you guys in the booth, but down here on the field it's pretty hot!") It almost gives me hope that the NFL will be presented on television in a sensible, agreeable manner. Almost.
Anyway, guess you'll have to spend this year without shots of Jill Arrington in a tight sweater, or Bonnie Bernstein wearing a Russian fur hat when it's 50 degrees outside. It's a brave new world, one that will be free of questions like:
-"What do you have to do in the second half to get back on track?"
-"Coach, you've gotta be pleased with your running game."
-"What's Fred Taylor's status for the second half?"
-"How do you stop (insert name of passer or runner)?"
I'm not sure how we'll live without those moments of complete and utter inanity. We'll just have to stick it out together.
NOTE: And, considering that a sideline reporter was the inspiration for this very site, this news almost makes me sad. But not really.