NFL on CBS Media Day: Tony Romo, Boomer Esiason, Greg Gumbel, James Brown and Nate Burleson Talk NFL Season and More!


( ENSPIRE Sports ) CBS Announces Its 2019 NFL Broadcast Teams and Tony Romo, Boomer Esiason, Greg Gumbel, James Brown and Nate Burleson Talk NFL Season and More

Photo Credit: Dex Blackman

Earlier this week CBS Sports kicked off its 60th NFL Season with an NFL on CBS media day. The 2019 broadcast teams and announcers were introduced. CBS has a crew blended with veteran experience and a contemporary perspective. The networks NFL announcer pairings for the 2019 season:

  • Jim Nantz/Tony Romo/Tracy Wolfson
  • Ian Eagle/Dan Fouts/Evan Washburn
  • Greg Gumbel/Trent Green/Melanie Collins
  • Kevin Harlan/Rich Gannon
  • Andrew Catalon/James Lofton
  • Spero Dedes/Adam Archuleta
  • Tom McCarthy/Jay Feely
  • Beth Mowins/Tiki Barber
James Brown and Nate Burleson

Being able to speak with Tony Romo, Boomer Esiason, Greg Gumbel, James Brown and Nate Burleson on New York Football, their thoughts on the upcoming season and the politics of football was great. They all touched on some imperative points, great perspectives and concise explanations that show all to much why they are some of the best in sports news.

Tony Romo

-What would you say is the one thing you’ve learned from last year that you’re taking for this year?

Tony Romo: I think you learned something every game. I don’t think there’s any one that is specific. I think you’re constantly evaluating yourself. And really just how to make people enjoy watching the game. I mean, in this society nowadays, it’s tougher to get someone to pay attention for three hours, an hour really for three. I mean, you really, so you have to come up with ways unique ways to communicate the same thing.

-What would you say is your favorite part about broadcasting?

Tony: Just honestly, at this point. I love the game of football, that’s number one. I really enjoy the play out right in front of you. And then right there with him and just be the people that work with a really enjoyable to be around. And I appreciate the friendship. It’s fun.

Boomer Esiason

-Do you see Eli starting all 16 games, or you see Daniel Jones coming to play this season?

Boomer Esiason: What I see, a best-case scenario for Eli is what happened in Kansas City a couple of years ago with Alex Smith and Patrick Mahomes. Alex Smith was up to the challenge, he had his best year ever as a pro. And he held off Patrick Mahomes until the last game of the year when the playoff birth was secured. And then the next year everybody knew Patrick was going to be great. Now Let’s trade Alex and get something for him. That’s the best-case scenario for the Giants. Have Eli have his best year ever, make it to the playoffs again and hand the ball to Daniel Jones next year. But the Giants aren’t the Kansas City Chiefs of two years ago they’re not that good. So I think their offense is better. If you draft the kid number six overall, he’s playing just a matter of when And that’s all going to be determined by either injury or winning. If they’re not winning the rookie is going to see time at some point. I went through it myself, so I know. Eventually, the rookies gotta get on the field.

-And what are your thoughts on the Jets quarterback situation this season?

Boomer: Sam Darnold second-year starter, high hopes for him. I love the match between him and Adam Gace, his new head coach, offensive-minded, young, aggressive. Who knows if Sam Darnold will throw for 35 touchdowns this year, or it’s his ass on the line. So I think Sam Darnold is in a great situation they added Le’Veon Bell, they added Ryan Kalil, they added Jamison Crowder and Ty Montgomery. Those are four pros who will make the job of Sam Darnold much easier. So hopefully that will be the case and he’ll be an exciting player.

Greg Gumbel

-What are your thoughts on the Jets new head coach and the changes they made?

Greg Gumbel: Well, I like their coach, I like Adam Gace, I got to know him last season. I live in South Florida now and when he was coaching the Miami Dolphins. And, and I like him I like his approach. He’s a no-nonsense kind of guy, which I think the Jets kind of need. And it’ll be, it’ll be interesting to see how much things Darnold develops, and how much help they can give him. Le’Veon Bell, which is an interesting pick up to them. But their culture has not been a winning one. And, but And that’s not to be taken away, simply because there are people who are brought in and their first job is to change the field around the team. There are some teams that are just born to lose. Chicago Cubs were like that for so many years, they were just used to losing games. And when you get used to losing, it’s hard to inject that winning feeling. And that confidence that comes not just with a couple of players, but with the entire organization. And for them to be able to change that. I don’t know how long it’s going to take. It would be nice if it happened overnight. But if it rarely happens overnight, and that’s one of the things that you have to wait and see what happens.

-Which team are you looking forward to seeing this season? Like who’s gonna have more excitement this season?

Greg: Well, certainly the Cleveland Browns are going to be. There’s a perfect example of a team that hasn’t had a winning culture in who knows how long. All of a sudden, there’s a new attitude, there are new players, there are people who are beginning to gel and who are realizing that all of a sudden, they can learn they can play winning football. And not everybody gets that and look how long it’s taken. Just two years ago, the Cleveland Browns weren’t winning games. The year before they won one, they won one game in two years, that’s hardly a winning culture. But suddenly, people come in, make some changes, make some good draft picks. Put together the right free agent saying you haven’t seen that’s going to be a nightmare for other teams to play in. If you’re just finding your feet. You know you want to be that and then maybe get on a roll and prove to yourself and to others that you really are a good team and that happens in all sports.

James Brown and Nate Burleson

-What are your thoughts on the Jets? It’s been a struggle. It’s been a struggle with the quarterback situation. Obviously, all the politics going on behind football, too. What are your thoughts with their situation, the new coach and the quarterback situation and as just New York sports in general with football?

James Brown: Clearly, from our standpoint, as a broadcaster, we need New York to do well for all the obvious reasons. It’s the number one market. It’s a major part of the engine that drives sports, especially when there are success here. So for all the obvious reasons. In terms of the Jets, well, I know some of the moves, and maybe even with the Giants, and some of their draft choices and all. People have, everybody’s an expert now, those of us who are not on the playing field. Everybody in the media. Fans who are much more sophisticated and knowledgeable now, everybody’s weighing in. And a lot of that drives some of the thinking and maybe even unfortunately, in some cases, decisions that team ownership and leadership makes. When you should never do that you go with what you know. So for what all that I’m seeing what the Jets have done, there is an energy inside that building and out there and on that practice field that has us excited. Clearly one of the conduits that we use, are people like my colleague, Boomer Esiason, who has his tentacles deep. And when you hear a lot of what’s going on behind the scenes, and how excited they are, and what they’ve done, because it starts at the top, if it’s dysfunctional at the top of any organization, chances are it’s going to be dysfunctional, through the rest of the organization.

I hear you know, I’ve learned that much. It always starts at the top. But for what I’m hearing, there is an excitement there throughout the building that resonates. Way back in the day, Joe Gibbs, when he was with Washington used to always talk about how important it was for everybody in the organization to do well. Well, you know, what, when I’m looking at successful organizations, whether you like them or not New England, irrespective of the challenges going on there. Ownership, knew the reception, his family, and in his paper business, he knew all about the family members. I said it today at our seminar when I got up to talk about the NFL today before I did that we have three colleagues who had significant losses in the family. Greg Gumble with his sister, James with his father, Dan Foust 90 plus-year-old father. And then we’ve got one gentleman who’s going through a real medical challenge, but he’s still working. The fact that our chairman of the company got up and spoke about that first, that we were family. I didn’t want to steal his thunder, but I personalized it because when I came back to CBS when he brought me back to CBS from Fox. It was on the heels of my mother going through nine months or longer actually battling the ravages of diabetes. And she passed before I started day one here. The fact that they welcomed me with a serious collective open arms helped me to get my feet planted emotionally, spiritually and mentally, so that I can start to run right. People trivialized the expression. People don’t want to know how much they don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care. That is what’s important. And for what I’m hearing over at the Jets. Right now they’ve got that kind of attitude and house that should permeate and result in good play on the field as well. I’d love to see it.

-Outside broadcasting, you were talking about you’re doing the music that you do, what other things are you doing that is community endeavored?

Nate Burleson: I’m part of the NFL youth football Committee, which is a group of about 15 of us. And we’re spread out throughout the country, heavily involved in the youth programs. I live in New Jersey, where my kids play football and basketball, they’re in need of guys that are attached to the NFL and the resources. So when it comes to sports, and giving kids an opportunity to get out of the streets and find motivation and older men and women that care for them in a way that we do. That’s the most important point. I think at this point, there are a few things heavy on my heart and making sure that the youth are more motivated than ever. And being able to tell the stories from yesteryear, that are direct results of my people. There’s going to be a documentary dropping at the end of the year about Fritz Pollard who was the first African American coach inducted into the Hall of Fame. So we’ll be filming that throughout the year. And I’m the narrator. It’s another job which I don’t have room for too many of them. But it’s a cultural piece that I’m proud to be part of. It’s one of those things that I can show my kids. Fritz Pollard was ahead of his time. This is 1920 in a timeframe where being an African American athlete in professional sports, you weren’t always welcomed at every place you walked into. So during this process, I’m learning about him while meeting with people that were attached to him. So different things like that, trying to have more impact with because I can talk on TV every day and make people laugh and be engaging about X’s and O’s. But it’s all pretty surface, you know, like, What am I doing that’s going to last the test of time? And If I do more pieces like that, the knowledge just spreads, you know, last longer than what I say about a championship game.

-With all these things that are going on with the NFL, the players and having them to use their platform; and people like you as well? Who have a platform? How important do you think it is going forward in football for players to start putting that out there a little bit more?

Nate: It’s huge. I believe that guys are doing it more and more, you know, in the early 2000s, you know, guys didn’t really show themselves when it came to some of the societal issues. Nowadays, players are bold, and it’s not just African American players. There are individuals from every race that are represented. And whatever issue we’re having right now and of course, you know, as a recently coming off the heels of Kaepernick. And then you look at this year with Meg Rapinoe from the women’s soccer team. She said she was inspired by Kap. She doesn’t hold her tongue about anything. When it comes to how she feels about politics and the management office. So I think nowadays like athletes are standing up the saying this dollar sign is cool that you’re hanging above my head, but I could live without it. In a moment where you can live without, you know, the money someone’s paying you. That’s the moment you have a different type of freedom.

Jim Nantz
Phill Simms