Steve Smith (R) talks to Mike Garafolo on NFLN about Jerry Jeudy. Steve Smith (R) talks to Mike Garafolo on NFLN about Jerry Jeudy. (Awful Announcing on Twitter.)

NFL Network’s pregame show ahead of this week’s Thursday Night Football clash between the Denver Broncos and the Kansas City Chiefs wound up with quite the moment. That moment saw analyst Steve Smith Sr. go off on Broncos’ wide receiver Jerry Jeudy:

There, reporter/host Mike Garafolo asks Smith about his off-camera exchange with Jeudy. And Smith has quite the comments:

“I called out to him because on my podcast, Cut To It, I’ve talked about guys that have maybe not shown up in a way or in a manner. And the word that I’ve used to describe them in the past is a “JAG,” just a guy. And so when I saw him, he’s playing well, and I wanted to say to him face-to-face like ‘Hey, I know I’ve said some things in the past I probably shouldn’t have, and I’m sorry.'”

“That’s what I wanted to say to him. But his response, Mike Garafolo and Bucky [Brooks], was ‘ninja,’ I’m using the word Ninja, I’m just using the word ninja, ‘I don’t mess with you.’ And it was a curse word. And so I was like ‘All right.’ And then he repeated it.”

“So I’ll say it again. I’m sorry that I said that you’re a JAG, just a guy, who’s an average wide receiver that they used a first-round pick on that isn’t doing anything. I hope today that you actually show up in a way that you haven’t shown up in the last couple of years since they drafted you.”

“So if you’ve ever got a problem with Agent #89, I’m sorry for saying that you’re an average wide receiver that they will eventually move on from. And when teams call me and ask ‘Should they trade for you?’, I will say ‘No, don’t trade for Jerry Jeudy.'”

“Because he’s mentally unable to handle constructive criticism from people who ask specifically ‘Can he be a wide receiver?’ He can be a wide receiver, he’s a Tier 3. Go back into the studio, I’m done now.”

This then led to a response from Jeudy, and a response from Smith:

That is quite the commentary from Smith. It’s unusual to hear an analyst, perhaps especially one who works for a league network, be so critical of a particular player. (Then again, many strange takes are heard on league networks these days.)

But it’s somewhat understandable why Smith weighed in in such strong terms after Jeudy’s negative response to his attempt to mend fences. And this definitely led to a lot of Twitter discussion. Here’s some of that:

At any rate, this was certainly an unusual moment. And it created a lot of discussion about both Smith and Jeudy.

[Awful Announcing on Twitter]

About Andrew Bucholtz

Andrew Bucholtz has been covering sports media for Awful Announcing since 2012. He is also a staff writer for The Comeback. His previous work includes time at Yahoo! Sports Canada and Black Press.