Tony Gonzalez joining CBS NFL broadcast; Dan Marino and Shannon Sharpe out

Tony GonzalezIt would appear that Tony Gonzalez is committed to retiring from football this time around, as CBS announced on Tuesday that he will join the network’s NFL broadcast during the 2014 season. Gonzalez will contribute to Showtime’s “Inside the NFL” in addition to working with “The NFL Today.”

Gonzalez’s arrival signals a major shake-up for CBS, as Dan Marino and Shannon Sharpe will be leaving the network. Gonzalez will work alongside James Brown, Bill Cowher and Boomer Esiason.

“While we welcome Tony, we want to acknowledge Dan Marino and Shannon Sharpe who have contributed greatly to the success of THE NFL TODAY for more than a decade,” CBS Chariman Sean McManus said in a statement. “Dan and Shannon are true Hall of Famers on the field and in front of the camera. As they pursue other professional opportunities, we thank them for their hard work and dedication and wish them nothing but the best.”

According to Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald, CBS made the decision to drop Marino and Sharpe and they did not choose to leave.

We have every reason to expect that Gonzalez, who has always been regarded as one of the classiest players in the NFL, will transition seamlessly from player to analyst. He has offered some controversial takes on the NFL’s new head shot rules, which apparently did not scare the folks at CBS away.

You mean to tell me this exchange is one of the last things we will remember from the Marino-Sharpe era at CBS? That’s a shame.

Shannon Sharpe rips on QBs without rings in front of Dan Marino and Boomer Esiason

Dan-MarinoDan Marino is one of the greatest quarterbacks to ever play in the NFL. Boomer Esiason wasn’t bad, either. The one knock on Marino is that he was never able to win a Super Bowl, and the same is true for Esiason. During the CBS pregame show before the Denver Broncos took on the San Diego Chargers on Sunday, Shannon Sharpe reminded his colleagues of that.

The panel was discussing whether or not Super Bowl championships validate greatness. Perhaps forgetting that he was sitting beside a Hall of Famer who never won a ring, Sharpe chimed in.

“For a quarterback, at the end of the day, you don’t even get to enter this discussion if you don’t have a championship,” Sharpe stated emphatically. “I’m sorry, that’s just the way it is.”

Oops. Marino then admitted that a Super Bowl trophy is the one thing he never captured, saying “I wish I had that feeling.” He also pointed out that Esiason walked off the field with a lead in Super Bowl 23 and would have won a championship if one of his Cincinnati Bengals teammates didn’t drop an interception. Sharpe then backpedaled.

“One more thing,” he interrupted. “Let’s not get carried away — there’s a lot of guys that have Super Bowl rings that are lesser quarterbacks than Dan Marino. So let’s not just say, ‘Oh, he won a Super Bowl…’”

Sharpe had a point. Championships are the ultimate measuring stick, especially when statistics vary so much from generation to generation (see: All the dudes who threw for over 4,000 yards the past two seasons). Sharpe just happened to make his point at an awkward moment, which made for extremely uncomfortable television.

Video via Awful Announcing

Dan Marino reportedly fathered child out of wedlock with a CBS employee

Dan-MarinoThe Super Bowl is just days away, and Miami Dolphins legend Dan Marino is set to work as part of CBS’ broadcast team before the big game begins. However, the Hall of Famer may find himself answering a number of questions unrelated to football over the next several days.

On Thursday morning, the NY Post published an exclusive story revealing that Marino fathered a child out of wedlock in 2005. Marino has worked as a CBS pregame analyst since 2003, and the woman he reportedly impregnated is a former CBS production assistant named Donna Savattere. She was 35 at the time.

“They had an affair, and she had a baby,” a source reportedly revealed to the Post. “Everything was on the down-low and secretive.”

The 51-year-old Marino reportedly paid Savattere millions of dollars to keep quiet about their daughter Chloe, who was born in June of 2005. On Wednesday, he issued a statement to the Post admitting to the infidelity.

“This is a personal and private matter,” Marino wrote. “I take full responsibility both personally and financially for my actions now as I did then. We mutually agreed to keep our arrangement private to protect all parties involved.”

Marino and his wife have six children, including two adopted daughters, and have been married for 28 years as of Wednesday. At the time of the affair, they had been married for 20 years. Marino claims his marriage remains intact despite the affair.

“My wife and I have been married for almost 30 years and have six children together,” he wrote. “And we continue to be a strong and loving family.”

The Post’s source said that Marino and his 7-year-old daughter have had “impromptu meetings,” which was part of the deal he arranged with Savattere in addition to the money he paid her. She has reportedly since married a man she met in the Bahamas in 2009 named Nahill Younis. Savattere and Younis also have a child of their own.

What was supposed to be an exciting and enjoyable week for Marino likely just became a long and stressful one.

Peyton Manning feels the Twitter love from Dolphins legend Dan Marino

Dan Marino doesn’t tweet very often, but he decided to send a message about Peyton Manning through the social networking service Thursday.

Coming from someone else, this would just be seen as ordinary respect from one quarterback to another. But this is different, obviously. Dan played his entire career with the Dolphins. Peyton called Dan his idol when he broke the single-season passing touchdowns record in 2004.

Between this tweet and the recruiting pitch from LeBron and Dwyane Wade, Miami is breaking out the big stops to get Manning interested in Miami — and that’s without even backing up the Brinks truck yet.

H/T Sun-Sentinel

Dan Marino: Bill Cowher Doesn’t Plan to Ever Return to Coaching

When discussing potential head coaching replacements in the NFL, one name that always seems to come up is Bill Cowher.  When you consider the fact that he is a Super Bowl-winning coach, only 51 years old, and said he would likely return to coaching at the time of his retirement, it makes perfect sense.  However, it is starting to sound like Cowher has no intention of making a return.  Dan Marino, one of Cowher’s coworkers and friends, recently said he can’t envision Bill returning to the sidelines.

“I would love to see him be the Dolphins’ coach or if he wanted to coach again because that would be great for the NFL, but I don’t think his mind-set is that he wants to coach again,” Marino told Dolphins.com. “And he may change that over time now, but my feeling is that, you know, he’s a pretty straightforward … guy that tells the — kind of — the truth most of the time, I would say — or no, all the time — and he said on TV that he doesn’t have any plans of coming back, and I believe him.”

We have speculated in the past that Cowher may want to coach in Kansas City, San Diego, and New York, but none of those scenarios ever came to fruition.  If Cowher did decide coaching was something he was interested in getting back into, he would have no problem finding a job.  That being said, he knows all about the long hours and stress that come along with it.  A known family man, it would make perfect sense for Cowher to be content with his CBS gig unless an offer comes along that he feels he can’t refuse.

Chest bump to NFL.com for passing the Marino interview along.

Kyle Turley: I Heard Dan Marino Got High Before Games

Former NFL lineman and first-round pick Kyle Turley was making the radio rounds on Thursday to promote a party he’s co-hosting at the Super Bowl on behalf of Gridiron Greats. The outspoken hot head already made headlines earlier in the day for ripping Brady Hoke who left Turley’s alma mater (San Diego State) to go coach at Michigan. That interview on XX Sports in San Diego had nothing on the interview he did with the Dan LeBatard Show on 790 the Ticket in Miami, as I learned via Steve Cofield.

Because Turley was promoting a Gridiron Greats party, he was asked about his partying habits. The conversation turned into one about weed, and one of the hosts asked Turley semi-jokingly, “Did you ever roll some [weed] before a game?” His answer blew the toupees off the old folks’ heads in South Florida:

“No, I never got the balls enough to do that. I heard Dan Marino did, down there in Miami. That’s a rumor, but I don’t know — you’d have to ask Danny. All those old pictures of him and his old hair, I wouldn’t pass it by him.”

Naturally the hosts were shocked, so they followed up asking for more details.

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