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What Would It Be Like If John Madden Called One More Game?

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In April 2009, at the age of 73, John Madden made the announcement that he was walking away from the broadcast booth and ending a career that saw him revolutionize the art of football color analysis. Now 85, John Madden is preparing to come out of the shadows where he’s been living his life out of the public eye ever since.

Thursday night, Fox Sports’ studio host Curt Menefee teased the news that the network will soon broadcast the first on-air interview with Madden in over a decade. It’s unclear if that interview will be part of the All Madden documentary to be released on Christmas Day or if we will see Madden before the release date.

What’s clear is that we’re about to get Madden content and it’s a massive Christmas gift to all of us who grew up with the grunts, the BOOMs, the Thanksgiving afternoons with the Madden cruiser, and football the way we loved it all those years with John calling the biggest NFC games of the week and later as the voice of Monday Night Football and Sunday Night Football.

All of it got me thinking: What would happen if Madden replaced Troy Aikman for a week on Fox?

The novelty factor would be through the roof. Teenagers would finally hear the guy the video game is named after call a game. Retirees would have one more chance to hear Madden bring back Brett Favre stories.

During a January 2021 email interview with ESPN, Madden was asked about the new generation of players and one that really has his interest.

“‘If there is anyone I would love to coach’ is Patrick Mahomes,” Madden wrote. “I’ve met him. I’ve talked to him. The kid is a first-class kid and a first-class player. I have talked to Andy Reid about him. There are a lot of guys out there I’d like to coach, but Patrick Mahomes would be the guy.”

Guess who has the Chiefs-Chargers game Thursday, December 16 in Los Angeles? That’s right, Fox does. I’m just saying.

And in case you’re thinking Madden has lost a step and the game has passed him by? Think again. The guy is inhaling football content.

“I watch a lot of football each week. I watch every game on my soundstage. I have 10 screens — one movie theater type of screen in the middle, then I have nine screens around it — four screens on either side and then one screen down below — and they’re all numbered,” he told ESPN.

“So, we could switch from one game to another game, so we don’t watch any commercials. I’ve been doing this since I retired. It’s kind of a complicated thing, but it’s a system that works for us. And so, it’s a perfect thing. So that’s why I set it up, and I do that every Sunday. I also get game films from the NFL, so if I wanted to look at a game, the coaches’ version of a game, I have that also. I have plenty of ways to watch.”

Yes, this site is owned by Fox Corp. and Clay is on all of the Fox broadcasts, but I have no insider knowledge of future plans with Madden besides what is known publicly. The documentary will be released Christmas Day and that’s it.

From his January interactions with ESPN and the previews from the documentary, it’s clear he could step into a booth and run circles around many of today’s color analysts.

“Initially, it started out as a Sunday hangout. Everyone would come by. We had our own food festival too, mostly BBQ. My only rule — if you want to come by to just eat and drink, you need to sit in the back, and if you want to sit up front, you cannot talk, just watch. With COVID, it’s just family now watching. The TV setup has been a big part of my happiness since I retired.”

C’mon John, how’s that Thursday night in December sound? One more gift for us aging guys who just want to consume football the way we grew up with it and loved it so much. Step into that booth and wax poetic about Patrick Mahomes vs. Justin Herbert.

Tell us stories for four-plus hours. We’re all ears.

Written by Joe Kinsey

I'm an Ohio guy, born in Dayton, who roots for Ohio State and can handle you guys destroying the Buckeyes, Urban Meyer and everything associated with Columbus.

4 Comments

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  1. I’d love to see Madden. He likely wouldn’t say much of anything controversial…at least to normal people. But just him being there would set of the small but vocal white-male hating Twitter mob. There is nothing better than setting those woke losers off.

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