There was some Dallas Cowboys flavor in Sunday's epic Super Bowl showdown between the Chiefs and 49ers. Multiple former Cowboys were on the rosters of the competing teams, including Randy Gregory, but Tony Romo calling the game for CBS alongside Jim Nantz was obviously the biggest Cowboys correlation.
Most of Romo's luster as a color analyst has worn off. He became the biggest sensation in NFL broadcasting, a mantle that now belongs to Greg Olsen, and though he still delivers strong commentary, his propensity to be overly dramatic and excitable in big moments has drawn the ire of fans.
Those habits returned on Sunday as the Chiefs scored a walk-off touchdown in overtime via a Patrick Mahomes pass to Mecole Hardman. Instead of allowing Nantz to have the floor and call the play, Romo broke the cardinal rule of broadcasting and jumped his longtime partner.
On the CBS broadcast, you can hear Romo utter "for the Super Bowl" as Mahomes completed his pass to Hardman. Romo then unleashed a celebratory sigh of relief. Nantz still nailed the call, but the overlap made for a tough listen and ruined an all-time moment.
Former Cowboys QB Tony Romo blasted for ruining Jim Nantz's call of Chiefs' game-winning TD
The jump might have been tough to decipher in real time, but Romo absolutely butchered Nantz's commentary. The former Cowboys quarterback's job was simple here: Sit back and allow Nantz, a broadcasting legend in his own right, to narrate history. His excitement got the best of him, and now we'll always hear him in the background of the game-winning TD in Super Bowl 58.
Romo's tough night didn't end there, unfortunately. Typically, after the culmination of a big game, announcers will allow the moment to breath. It gives fans an opportunity to absorb an unforgettable moment created by the winning team's celebrations and the losing team's utter despair.
Romo, though, kept his analysis hat on.
“This was the Andy Reid special, we talked about he was saving all day. He is going to fake a motion to go across. That moment he turns and goes back — Hardman, who they didn’t have, right? And they go get Hardman and bring him back. The game-winning drive of Mahomes’ career, he has been waiting for. He’s won Super Bowls, but he’s never had it in overtime. He is the best, he is the standard, Michael Jordan. Wins it again.”
It's admittedly strong analysis from Romo. In one fell swoop, Romo lauded Andy Reid's play-calling looped fans in on Hardman's redemption story after the Jets traded him back to the Chiefs mid-season, and brought Mahomes' legacy into perspective.
It was impressive work, but did it need to come mere seconds after Hardman's touchdown? Absolutely not. He talked over all of the Chiefs' celebrations. He should've either allowed Nantz to tell the story or let the natural sound and visuals take over.
Romo has faced increased backlash since his rise to broadcast superstardom. His apex moments have been marred by a growing list of miscues. His performance on Sunday did nothing to help his status as a polarizing analyst.
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