Ravens TV: Not Phil Simms best day, but it's OK

Baltimore Sun reporter

From the Z on TV blog:

CBS analyst Phil Simms called Baltimore Raven coach John Harbaugh "Jim" Harbaugh at one point.

At another point in Sunday's game, he claimed that members of the NFL players association "don't really know what's going on" because of a survey in which they named Ben Roethlisberger, the Steelers regular quarterback, one of the the most overrated players in the game.

And at the end of the telecast, Simms insisted that Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Charlie Batch, who filled in for the suspended Roethlisberger, "played really well today." That was right after the game-ending interception Batch threw to Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis.

As those three moments suggest, Sunday's game was not one of the best in the broadcasting career of Phil Simms. But Simms and play-by-play announcer Jim Nantz still deliver one of the better NFL telecasts around -- even on a relatively bad day. And who wants to complain too much on a day when the Ravens beat the Steelers in such dramatic fashion?

As I said last week, when you combine the visuals images, taped packages, endless camera angles, steady flow of information, generally smooth performance in the booth and enhanced HD technology, almost every CBS, Fox, ESPN and NBC NFL telecast is a pleasurable viewing experience these days.

So, I am not getting cosmic about it. I enjoyed the game.

But Batch did not play really well. He had a few good moments, but the cameras also showed viewers at least three plays in which he had receivers wide open and missed them badly. And while you can credit the Ravens pass rush, Batch was not particularly mobile in getting away from the pressure.

And Simms saying that members of the NFL players association "don't really know what's going" on, while he does, sounds just a little bit blowhard and overly celebratory of Roethlisberger to me. In fact, at that point, Simms was starting to get on my nerves.

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