Pablo Torre said he's sick of film breakdown being such a prevalent part of NFL content. Screen grab: ‘The Dan Le Batard Show with Stugotz’

When it comes to NFL coverage, it’s been impossible not to notice the recent rise of content focused on film breakdown.

And despite it being arguably the most in-depth look fans can possibly get at the games they’re watching, Pablo Torre has seen enough.

During Wednesday’s episode of The Dan Le Batard Show with Stugotz — which Torre guest-hosted with Domonique Foxworth and David Samson — the show aired a clip from the latest episode of HBO’s Hard Knocks: Offseason with the New York Giants. And while Foxworth, a former NFL defensive back, could hardly contain his excitement watching Drake Maye break down film with the Giants front office ahead of the NFL Draft, Torre had an even tougher time hiding his disdain.

“I hate this entire genre — of video, of person, of cultural trend,” Torre said. “All we just heard was a bunch of jargon that 99 percent of the audience has no idea what it means at all.”

“You have to understand what’s happened to American sports. Not only has football overtaken the entire calendar, but football players being nerds — what happened? Why are football players coming for my corner?” he continued. “They’re not even doing anything that anybody understands in the least. I don’t even know if Drake Maye, if his ability to do any of that is actually going to translate to being good at quarterback. And so here is this whole American Idol contest of, ‘Can you say the most amount of just bulls**t?’ that I presume is really something.”

Torre and Foxworth proceeded to go back and forth on the subject, with the former Maryland star accusing the Pablo Torre Finds Out host of being jealous that former NFL players like himself are filling with sports media landscape with a skill he doesn’t possess. And while that wasn’t necessarily a charge that Torre denied, he maintained that film breakdown content simply isn’t compelling to most of the audience.

“We’ve gotten to the point where jargon, where being confusing and extremely technical has become mainstream,” Torre said. “And I just want to know when we decided this was a thing.

“I think Dan Orlovsky’s really good at what he does. I think he’s the guy who’s probably the best at the telestration and the breaking down and the dissection. But it just feels like a lot of people nodding at something that they think they should be impressed by as opposed to actually knowing what’s happening and we’re getting away from the actual premise of like, ‘Football players doing something on the field that is good.'”

After Foxworth pushed back by comparing the variety in football coverage to the different ways people enjoy movies — “It’s fine if you’re big explosion guy. Don’t get mad at us allegory bros,” he said — Torre conceded, “I think that’s a reasonable parallel. I just think we fetishize jargon.”

It would be tough to argue that variety in coverage and consumers being better informed is somehow a bad thing, yet Torre makes a compelling case. So much of current NFL coverage centers on in-depth film analysis that it’s fair to wonder how many people actually understand what they’re watching and how many are just nodding along because they think that’s what they’re supposed to do.

Foxworth is right, however, that it is, in fact, a positive that fans who want to be better informed now have the option to do so. Ultimately, there’s enough room in the sports media ecosphere for those who want to analyze Xs and Os and those who want to argue whatever the football equivalent of  “Joel Embiid needs to step up” is.

[The Dan Le Batard Show with Stugotz]

About Ben Axelrod

Ben Axelrod is a veteran of the sports media landscape, having most recently worked for NBC's Cleveland affiliate, WKYC. Prior to his time in Cleveland, he covered Ohio State football and the Big Ten for outlets including Cox Media Group, Bleacher Report, Scout and Rivals.