Chris Russo on First Take Photo credit: ESPN

Joe Buck and Troy Aikman might appear to have a pretty cool job that millions of fans envy, until the NFL forces them to sit through an entire Chicago Bears game.

Monday’s matchup between the Bears and Minnesota Vikings played out more like a preseason game than a prime time contest in late November. With six turnovers and just 19 points between the two teams, Buck and Aikman got a taste of the frustrations expressed by Al Michaels every week with that “crap” Thursday Night Football schedule.

Wednesday morning on First Take, Chris “Mad Dog” Russo used his “What are you mad about?” segment to sympathize with ESPN’s announcers for having to call the atrocity that was the Bears-Vikings this week on Monday Night Football.

“Did anybody see Buck and Aikman?” Russo asked. “Did you see Buck and Aikman with that Bear-Viking game? I think we’ve all seen enough of the Bears. Last year they lost their last ten games. And I understand they got a lot of mouths to feed with the NFL schedule makers, but who in their right mind – in May – decided to put the Bears on in 2023, FIVE TIMES ON NATIONAL TELEVISION!”

Not lost is the irony of Russo going on ESPN and railing against a game that aired on ESPN. But since joining ESPN, Russo has repeatedly proved that he has no interest in bowing to the Worldwide Leader. Last year, he ignored ESPN’s UFC partnership and claimed serious sports fans don’t watch the sport. And earlier this year, Russo referred to Disney as “brainless entertainment.” Watching Bears-Vikings probably falls into that same category.

“Boy, Buck and Aikman were so annoyed doing that game, it was funny,” Russo continued. “That last play, oh they hated that last play…NOBODY in America, especially Buck and Aikman, wants to watch the Bears!”

That last play being Minnesota’s failed desperation attempt at getting into the end zone, chock full of laterals, offensive linemen running with the ball, and an illegal forward pass, all of which Buck aptly noted should have been accompanied by the Benny Hill music.

It was an ugly finish to an ugly game. Albeit one that NFL fans didn’t have to watch. Russo admitted he listened to Rob Reiner’s Who Killed JFK? podcast instead of watching Monday Night Football. Buck and Aikman, however, didn’t have that same power, and for that, Russo sympathizes with the iconic broadcast duo.

[First Take]

About Brandon Contes

Brandon Contes is a staff writer for Awful Announcing and The Comeback. He previously helped carve the sports vertical for Mediaite and spent more than three years with Barrett Sports Media. Send tips/comments/complaints to