Mike Ditka sticks to his guns on Matthew Stafford’s backwards hat

Matthew-Stafford-Kelly-HallMost of us thought Mike Ditka sounded like a complete moron a few months ago when he criticized Matthew Stafford for wearing his hat backwards. But Mike Ditka thought Mike Ditka sounded just fine. How do we know this? Because the former Chicago Bears coach refused to change his stance when discussing Stafford on Monday.

Ditka, who made an appearance on 97.1 The Ticket in Detroit, basically said Stafford needs to turn his hat around because he is representing an NFL team and not a gang.

As we pointed out before, Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers, Jay Cutler and Tony Romo also must have ties to gangs. All of the aforementioned NFL stars have at some point in their careers worn their baseball caps backwards knowing cameras were around. Can you think of anything more disrespectful?

During the NFL playoffs earlier this year, a sports writer said Colin Kaepernick needed to turn his hat around and act like a professional. The fact that a backwards hat in itself is an issue for people like Ditka is truly amazing. He really needs to move on from that subject.

H/T @WorldofIsaac

Mike Ditka criticizes Matthew Stafford for wearing hat backwards

Matthew-Stafford-Kelly-HallDetroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford is coming off back-to-back seasons in which he has made too many mistakes. After throwing a whopping 41 touchdowns and 16 interceptions in 2011, he threw 20 scores and 17 picks in 2012. This past season, Stafford threw 19 interceptions and 29 touchdowns. The turnovers have to stop, and Mike Ditka alluded to that on Sunday night.

Ditka, an ESPN analyst, said he sees “touches of greatness” in Stafford when he is not making dumb throws. He also said he would like to see Stafford change the way he dresses.

“I think he can make all the throws. He’s a smart kid,” Ditka said, per Carlos Monarrez of the Detroit Free Press. “I wish he’d put the baseball cap on frontwards instead of backwards all the time.”

Here we go again. Last month, a writer took a ton of heat for saying Colin Kaepernick does not act like a professional because he wears his hat backwards. We then shared with you a collage of photos that features Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers and others wearing their hats backwards. Ditka apparently has a problem with it.

“If you’re the leader of the football team, I think you’ve got to stand up and be that leader, assume that role,” he said. “A lot of it is what you do on the field, certainly. But I think a little of it has to do with appearance, too. You know, respect the game, respect your team. That’s all.

“I’m not knocking him. I’m just saying that’s the first thing I would tell him if I inherited him. When you’re going to go do an interview, put it on like it’s supposed to be on, not backwards, sidewards, whatever way they put them on anymore.”

As we said with Kaepernick, wearing a backwards hat has nothing to do with being a professional or being prepared. It’s a backwards hat! If Stafford was flashing gang signs or being disrespectful during interviews, Ditka would have a point. Again, it’s a f—–g backwards hat.

Photo via Instagram/Kelly Hall

Mike Ditka on cold weather Super Bowl: ‘It’s stupid’

Mike-Ditka-BearsChicago Bears legend Mike Ditka knows plenty about football in severe weather. He spent eight seasons as a player with the Bears and Philadelphia Eagles and another 11 seasons in Chicago as a coach. You would think he would be one of the people who supports an outdoor Super Bowl in New York, but Da Coach actually thinks it’s downright “stupid.”

“The weather’s going to be a problem,” Ditka told the Detroit Free Press on Monday. “They made a big mistake. The game shouldn’t be there. I mean, it’s stupid.”

If you believe some of the more well-known forecasters, the weather may not end up being that huge of an issue. Accuweather set up a website that is dedicated strictly to forecasting the weather for the Super Bowl, and as of now temperatures are expected to be in the mid-30s at game time with just an 18% chance of rain or snow showers.

“First of all, it’s not fair to the players,” Ditka added. “It’s not going to be fair to the fans. It’s not going to be that enjoyable. I mean, I understand it’s the Super Bowl and it’s a privilege to play in the Super Bowl. It’d be nice to be playing in Miami or San Diego or New Orleans or somewhere the weather is conducive to guys being able to show their talents.”

Many fans who spend thousands of dollars on tickets will be proud to say that they attended the first ever outdoor, cold weather Super Bowl. Ditka hates the idea because he believes it will result in players performing at lower levels.

“I’m just saying, if you get extreme cold or you get snow during the game, then it’s unfair to the fans, to the players, to everybody,” he said. “You’re not going to be able to perform at near the level you’re used to. And the element of luck comes into it, and it shouldn’t happen in that game. That game should be based on the people on the field who make the plays.”

Some would argue that the mark of a great team is being able to adjust and perform under all circumstances. That’s why being able to win on the road in the playoffs is so important, especially if you’re traveling to a place like New York, Chicago, Denver or Foxboro. While the weather may be a factor, both teams have to deal with it. Whoever can overcome all variables deserves to be called the best team in the NFL.

Maybe Ditka just can’t stand the thought of people having to be as red-faced as he was in Chicago last month.

H/T Shutdown Corner

Mike Ditka talks about wrong game during pregame show (Video)

Mike Ditka sleepingFor the second week in a row, Mike Ditka had a flub on ESPN’s countdown show. This has become a pattern, and now we’re not even laughing about it; we’re legitimately concerned about his well being.

When the ESPN crew was breaking down the Saints-Eagles playoff game, Ditka added his analysis. Only his analysis was for the wrong game. He began explaining why he thought Dontari Poe would be a disruptive force for the Kansas City Chiefs against the Indianapolis Colts and, for the second week in a row, Keyshawn Johnson had to lean over to help him get on the right page.

We, like many football fans, love Da Coach. But ESPN should probably recommend some health checks for him, because clearly something’s wrong. He is 74 after all.

Previously: Mike Ditka falls asleep on NFL Countdown


Mike Ditka caught sleeping during NFL Sunday Countdown (Video)

Mike Ditka sleepingMike Ditka appeared to catch a few Zs during ESPN NFL Sunday Countdown.

As the show went back to the studio following a report from Josina Anderson at the Jets-Dolphins game, Da Coach seemed to be sound asleep. Keyshawn Johnson had to reach over to shake him to wake him up. Ditka now joins Mike Francesa and Bob Knight as personalities who have fallen asleep on air.

I actually did the same thing during one of my old 11:00 p.m.-5:00 a.m. sports update shifts back in the day, so there really is only so much laughing I can do. When you’re tired, this sort of thing tends to happen.

First spotted at Deadspin

Mike Ditka halftime speech – a little chilly? (Video)


Mike Ditka had his number retired by the Chicago Bears on Monday night during what was one of the coldest games in team history. The temperature was in the single digits all game with a sub-zero wind chill. The Bears legend gave a great speech during halftime, despite the fact that his face looked like it would have shattered if someone flicked it with their finger.

Like everyone else at Soldier Field, Ditka appeared to be frozen right to the bone. His face was about as red as Tom Coughlin’s was when the New York Giants took on the Green Bay Packers in the NFC Championship Game a few years back — and you can’t get much more red than that. Here’s a video that a fan shared where you can hear Ditka’s speech.

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Mike Ditka calls Jonathan Martin a ‘baby’

Former NFL head coach Mike Ditka spoke about the Richie Incognito bullying situation during ESPN’s Sunday NFL Countdown and gave a unique take. Rather than blasting Incognito for allegedly bullying Jonathan Martin like most other analysts have done, Ditka said he would not want either player in his locker room.

“I want to say one thing,” he said, according to Pro Football Talk. “If I was the coach, I wouldn’t have either Incognito, the bully, or the baby, Martin, on my team. That’s me. [Does] that make me right? No. That makes me me. And I would stand up to that, because you don’t do what Martin did and you don’t do want Incognito did. Period.”

As you might expect, Ditka’s opinion was not well received. Many people feel that the “tough guy” culture of the NFL is the reason Incognito was able to get away with harassing Martin for so long, and Ditka labeling Martin a “baby” perpetuates that. Keyshawn Johnson seemed to strongly disagree.

“To hear Coach Philbin say [Martin] could have come to him, no he couldn’t have,” Johnson said.  “Obviously, because he didn’t. There’s a reason he checked himself into a hospital. He didn’t just decide one day, ‘Oh, you know what, I’m gonna wake up and go check myself into a hospital because I’m not feeling good.’ No, he checked himself into a hospital because he was disturbed about everything that’s been happening to him over the last year and a half, Coach.”

If you have heard some of the stuff that was allegedly said to Martin, it’s hard to side with Ditka. We’re talking about full-grown adults in the workplace. Could Martin have done a better job of sticking up for himself? Probably, but not everyone is wired the same. Incognito and others — including the Dolphins organization — should have known when to quit.

Full Richie Incognito-Jonathan Martin history:

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