It’s hard to be too critical of any NFL telecast that delivers the kind of images CBS did Sunday following Jacoby Jones’ touchdown catch that put the Ravens up 19-3 over the New York Jets.
The money shot with five seconds left in the third quarter was a close-up on the face of Ed Reed, the Jets safety who was beaten on the play.
Reed, the former Raven who is considered by many to be the best safety ever, was sitting on the bench looking toward the field with a pained expression on his face. He then hung his head in embarrassment as his former teammates celebrated across the field on which he had once enjoyed so many triumphs.
Wisely, director Suzanne Smith brought her cameras back to Reed no less than three times coming in and out of commercials as replays of Jones’ great catch replayed. Each time, Reed looked just as pained. It was the look of a man who perhaps knew that he had hung on for one paycheck too many.
That was the high end of CBS’s coverage and it also included images of a joyous Joe Flacco coming off the field after that pass showing as much excitement as you’re ever going to see from the Ravens’ stone-faced quarterback.
On the other hand, in that very same window of time following the touchdown, CBS failed to provide any images of Jones dancing in the end zone.
I had to go to Twitter and the Baltimore Sun’s Aaron Wilson to even know Jones was dancing in the end zone.
“Jacoby Jones with an end-zone dance after his second touchdown catch of the season,” Wilson tweeted.
Given Jones’ “Dancing with the Stars” history and the kinds of moves he made on the field Sunday, his post-TD steps would have been nice to see — very nice to see.
I later saw it on WJZ’s local highlights show after the game. I don’t think CBS ever showed it during the telecast.
But like I said, it’s hard to be too critical. The great image was that of Reed, and CBS delivered that one.
Overall, Smith and producer Mark Wolff put together a solid and energetic telecast.
There were some strange shots, like a tight focus on what looked like a plastic bag on the field.
Maybe it was an errant shot, a directorial mistake, or maybe it would have meant something if play-by-play announcer Greg Gumbel or analyst Dan Dierdorf had explained it. But they said nothing, so I have no idea what it meant.
And the telecast was wildly uneven on injuries.
Again, I had to go to Wilson on Twitter to know “Jets linebacker Troy Davis is being evaluated for a head injury after being crushed on a block by Courtney Upshaw.”
Ditto for “Chris Canty went into locker room for evaluation.”
CBS did tell viewers Canty was out at one point with a possible shoulder injury — but not in the locker room.
And CBS never told me when Canty and Arthur Brown, who also went out with an injury, returned later in the game.
I had to go to Sun writer Jeff Zrebiec on Twitter for that.