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#pounditThursday, March 30, 2023

Booger McFarland throws shade at NFL in aftermath of Damar Hamlin situation

Booger McFarland smiling

Oct 4, 2021; Inglewood, California, USA; Booger McFarland aka Anthony McFarland on the ESPN Monday Night Football Countdown set before the game between the Los Angeles Chargers and the Las Vegas Raiders at SoFi Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

ESPN analyst Booger McFarland ripped the NFL on Monday night in the aftermath of the Damar Hamlin situation.

Hamlin collapsed after making a tackle on Tee Higgins with 5:58 left in the first quarter of the Week 17 “Monday Night Football” game between the Bengals and Buffalo Bills at Paycor Stadium in Cincinnati. The 24-year-old safety was given CPR and later taken away in an ambulance.

According to a timeline provided by ESPN, which was broadcasting the game, the contest was temporarily suspended 23 minutes after Hamlin collapsed. One hour and six minutes after Hamlin collapsed, the NFL officially declared that the game would not be played that night.

The NFL was criticized heavily by many Twitter user for taking so long to announce the game would not continue. In the ESPN studio, McFarland, a former NFL player, made clear that the league needed to suspend the game.

“I think we reached a point where nobody is concerned about football anymore tonight,” McFarland said. “Football is played as entertainment. I don’t think anybody is in the mood nor the spirit to be entertained tonight. The only thing we’re concerned about is that young man, his family, what’s going with him, making sure that he’s OK. That’s it. We’ll figure out the football game at some other point in time.

“It’s time for the NFL … whoever needs make the call… we’re done playing football tonight. … nobody is concerned about football right now. America is concerned right now about one thing: the health and safety of this young man. … NFL, go ahead and call this game. Let’s move on.”

Then, about an hour after Hamlin collapsed, ESPN’s studio team of Adam Schefter, Suzy Kolber and McFarland were talking about the situation. Schefter was talking about how the NFL was likely operating and handling matters, with people on the phone with coaches and officials.

McFarland stepped in and threw some shade at the NFL for seemingly being concerned about what will happen with the game.

“Knowing how the NFL operates … not only are they canceling the game, they’re probably trying to figure out what we’re gonna to do next. To let the coaches know what to do, how we’re going to do it, because that’s what the NFL thinks. I think the rest of America right now is not thinking about that. The rest of America is thinking about this young man. But the NFL, that’s kind of how they run their business,” McFarland said.

McFarland, 45, played in the NFL from 1999-2007 and won two Super Bowls. He has worked with ESPN since 2014 and became part of their “Monday Night Football” team in 2018.

The NFL released a statement saying that Hamlin is in critical condition. A friend of Hamlin also shared an update on the status of the Bills safety.


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