Stephen A. Smith, Molly Qerim, Marcus Spears and Chris Russo on First Take Photo credit: ESPN

The Kansas City Chiefs and Miami Dolphins should be a Sunday morning treat for football fans, except for the ones stuck in church like Chris “Mad Dog” Russo.

During his “What are you mad at?” segment Wednesday morning on First Take, Russo went off on the NFL for sending the Chiefs and Dolphins to Germany, forcing fans to start their football viewing early on Sunday if they want to watch the week’s best matchup.

NFL fans are used to international games having early kickoff times, but usually, those matchups are bland enough that if you have to do your Sunday morning chores, you’re not missing much. But Chiefs-Dolphins? Who wants to miss that game this season? Certainly not Chis Russo.

“What is the NFL doing,” Russo raged on First Take. “They’re gonna make me wake up at the crack of dawn to watch Chiefs and Dolphins in Frankfurt, Germany?”

Russo has a point. The NFL fan would be better served if a November matchup between two Super Bowl contenders like the Dolphins and Chiefs kicked off at 4:25. But no one would be better served by that than CBS. Without Dolphins-Chiefs in its primetime window on Sunday, CBS’ Week 9 slate of games is much less attractive.

“Did you see the CBS schedule this week?” Russo said while noting CBS Sports executive Sean McManus should be on the phone with Roger Goodell to complain. “Ian Eagle is the number two guy doing Houston and Tampa! And Harlan, the voice of the NBA for TNT, you know what game he’s got? He’s the number three announcer. He’s got Colts and Panthers! He might as well not even show up, nobody wants to watch that!”

But while CBS, Sean McManus, Ian Eagle, and Kevin Harlan might be getting a raw deal by losing Chiefs-Dolphins to the NFL Network, no one is hurt by the 9:30 a.m. kickoff more than devout churchgoers.

“I go to church on Sunday! I take Molly Russo [Dog’s mother] out to brunch,” Russo ranted. “I can’t watch that dopey game! And I want to! But Roger put me in a tough spot! I gotta pray to my God! I can’t be praying to Mahomes and Tua!”

If Russo can’t handle morning NFL games, that should rule out the West Coast for him when he retires. Luckily for Russo, he has plenty of time to sort that out because he has no plans of retiring anytime soon. And with rants like this, who would want him to?

[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