Why Does NBC Have Matt Millen in Their Broadcast Studio as an Expert Analyst?

I understand the way things work in sports broadcasting — the analyst jobs usually go to popular athletes who have retired or coaches who have recently been fired. I don’t have too many problems with this practice. For instance, ESPN brought recently fired Tennessee coach Phillip Fulmer into their college football studio for analysis, and NBA TV has added recently fired Raptors coach Sam Mitchell to their studio. I’ll listen to what Fulmer has to say since the guy built a strong program and was a national champion coach. Mitchell last year led the Raptors to the playoffs and is a former Coach of the Year, so his analysis of the game carries weight. What I don’t understand is how NBC can invite Matt Millen into their studio as an analyst given his history as a team exec. The guy ran the Lions from ’01 until this season when he was finally sacked after a few games. The team’s record was 34-81 under his watch. Millen presided over one of the most embarrassing stretches for a team in the history of professional sports. What expert opinion could the guy possibly have to lend?

Yes, I understand that Millen was a Super Bowl winner as a player and that he began a career in broadcasting following retirement. Yes, I understand he may have had success in each of those areas in life. However, what’s freshest in my mind and that of pretty much any football fan is his failures with the Lions. Failures of gargantuan proportion. How could any sensible broadcasting outlet bring him in as an expert analyst and expect the audience to take anything he says seriously? The guy admitted in an interview with Dan Patrick that he was not qualified for the job when the Lions hired him and that he would have even fired himself. So when he says things like he “the Lions have a foundation in place” how can you help but not laugh? A foundation for what, more losing? To me, NBC Sports loses all credibility bringing him on for an analyst role. After the job he just did with the Lions, I have legitimate reasons to question anything and everything he says.

Around The Web

  • http://twitter.com/vanillacokehead Vanilla Cokehead

    I’m glad Matt Millen picked himself up and dusted himself off and may be poising himself for a return to the booth or studio. While I thought he sucked – badly – as an NFL exec – I liked him as a broadcaster.

    Give the dude props for admitting his marked lack of acumen in the front office.

    Now this would be interesting – boot Tony Kornheiser out of the booth for MNF on ESPN – and replace him with Millen. The latter’s misadventures in Detroit – assuming he could be good-natured and self-effacing about it – would make for an interesting mix with Mike Tirico and Ron Jaworski.

  • fire-millen-again

    Millen shunned the media in Detroit and refused to answer basic questions about what he was doing with the Lions. Now he is back to being Mr. Friendly in front of the camera. He does not deserve to be an analyst as he had nothing to offer as an executive to fix the Lions. He says the Lions now have a foundation? They have 1 or 2 players who could start on another team. No coaching staff and too many holes on offense and defense to count. It will take several years of productive drafts to get them to a respectable level. Shame on NBC.

  • nfl fAN

    You need to lay off the coke, cokehead, and get some perspective. Millen has no credibility when it comes to commentary on the NFL because he was in charge of an NFL team for 8 years and was an abject failure. Who cares what he has to say?? Really. Who cares?? Millen’s NFL knowledge was tested on the job and he was monstrously, laughably bad. His opinions are meaningless because he’s proven he doesn’t get it. I can’t believe NBC hired him. Obviously, they don’t get it or they are simply trying to appeal to knuckleheads like cokehead. Btw, Millen’s claim to “take responsibility” is a joke – it doesn’t cost him anything now. A real man would have taken responsibility years ago by owning up to the fact he is in over his head – and irreparably hurting the careers of his players and those around him – and resigned. By Millen refused to take money when it mattered and instead continued to take money he didn’t earn at the expense of the Detroit Lions football organization. Thats not taking responsibility and instead shows that Millen is, as a human being, a feckless coward. I have no respect for the guy. I can’t believe anyone does. Oh, yeah, he’s supposedly a nice guy. Great. Just don’t tell me he knows anything about football or that he’s a stand up guy. The facts say otherwise.

  • Clyde

    Wow Millen on NBC thats worse than Olberman on NBC woops Ok now who else would be the worst person you could hire to destroy any rational minds from tuning in to NBC Pregame Show. I can not wait to see who it is…

  • SpinMax

    Pathetic, Millen himself should have told NBC that it’s best he take a couple years off. It’s not like he’s struggling to feed his kids

  • Shemp

    Elton John, Nicole Ritchie or Margret Thatcher are not the first people that come to mind when I think of NFL insight and analysis, but I have no evidence of their lack of knowlege. I do have proof beyond a shadow of a doubt that Matt Millen does not know what it takes to make a winner in the NFL. He has had 8 seasons at the helm of an NFL franchise, and under his watch it has gone from mediocre to a horrendous disaster the likes of which have never been seein in the history of the NFL. Given this obvious lack of credibility, I cannot figure out why NBC gave him a microphone and put him on set. I would rather hear Elton’s take on what the Dolphins should do in the off season, or what Nichole thinks the Steelers need to focus on when hosting Baltimore this week. Giving Margaret Thatcher a gig in the booth would be rediculious, but arguably less rediculious than putting Millen in there.