Usually when I think of Phil Simms and the Super Bowl, his otherworldly performance against Denver in SB XXI comes to mind. After Simms’ turgid analysis of last night’s Baltimore triumph over San Francisco, however, he might’ve fashioned a post-playing Super Bowl legacy every bit as underwhelming as his MVP display in 1987 was dominant. Here’s a handful of reviews :
“I have got to say, that’s a good no-call,” Simms said after the Ravens’ Jimmy Smith put his hands on receiver Michael Crabtree in the end zone on a fourth-and-goal play.
Simms initially noted that the contact came within the permitted five yards, but Jim Nantz pointed out that it was more like seven yards past the line of scrimmage.
As the damning replays mounted, Simms said, “The more angles I see, the more confused I get.” Neil Best, Newsday
I’m not sure why, but Phil Simms really was off his game Sunday. Following John Harbaugh’s decision to go with a fake field goal, Simms came back from commercial and said he wasn’t going to second-guess the coach? Huh? Isn’t that what an analyst does? The call was begging for more analysis, agree or disagree. You can’t be a network analyst in the Super Bowl, and shy away from weighing in on such a controversial decision. Big blow to Simms’ credibility, as evidenced by the reaction on Twitter. – Ed Sherman, The Sherman Report
After what was essentially the Super Bowl-clinching play for the Ravens defense in the final minutes, Simms was a disaster. It looked like a fairly obvious holding or pass interference penalty on Baltimore’s Jimmy Smith. Simms suggested at first that it was a “good no-call,” citing the fact that it was “late in the game.” But then Simms began to backtrack. After more looks, he admitted that “the more angles I see the more confused I get,” but still said “it’s hard to throw a penalty in that situation.” – Brad Gagnon, Awful Announcing
Two weeks to prepare, and on the first play from scrimmage the Niners are called for an illegal formation.
Then Phil Simms says of the play, “Yeah, Jim, I could see it when they came out.” Then how ’bout sharing that with us before it’s called?
Anquan Boldin catches a 13-yard TD pass, then Simms says, “I heard it 1,000 times this week, when the Ravens get inside that 10-yard-line, or near it, they’re looking to throw the football to Anquan Boldin.”
Is that right? So why not tell us — just once — before the play? – Phil Mushnick, NY Post
Simms provided no insight during two of the biggest plays of the games: a fake field goal by the Ravens in the first half and Jacoby Jones’ 108-yard kick return to start the second half. I still don’t know why one failed and the other succeeded. Explaining such big moments is Job One for an analyst. – Dave Zurawik, Baltimore Sun
Once the game resumed, Simms did not seem to draw inspiration from Beyoncé or studying highlights in the dark. He offered a trite truism about the 49ers, who were trailing badly: “When you’re down, you have to make great catches.”
Simms then added this tortured analysis: “One thing I’ve taken out of this game, and really all through the playoffs, is if you watch it, the number of big plays in the games are because the quarterbacks are throwing the football.” (Yes, yes!) Arm strength, he emphasized, is important.
Then, after the 49ers had amassed 105 post-blackout yards and 14 points, to the Ravens’ 15 yards, Simms said that the power failure had not hurt the Ravens but that it had helped the 49ers. – Richard Sandomir, NY Times