1. I’ve said this a million times and I’ll say it again: More miked-up players, please.
In addition to the great games we got from wild-card weekend, we now have some outstanding clips of players who were miked up during the action.
NFL Films does a tremendous job each week of highlighting the best of players who were miked up for games, and things went to another level for wild-card weekend.
First we have Giants nose tackle Dexter Lawrence, who caused havoc for the Vikings in New York’s 31–24 win.
Thanks to him being miked up, we know that 6'4", 342-pound Lawrence attributes his strong play to Pilates. We also know that the Vikings hugged Lawrence more than his girlfriend. This was A+ trash talking.
Next we have Bengals defensive lineman Sam Hubbard, who sealed Cincinnati’s 24–17 win over Baltimore with a 98-yard fumble return for a touchdown.
All of us who have ever told a white lie to make ourselves look good will appreciate how Hubbard handled himself after the long touchdown. Right after scoring, Hubbard kept screaming, “CAN’T CATCH ME! YOU CAN’T CATCH ME.” And then he immediately kept telling everyone on the sidelines, “I was so scared of getting caught.” Perfect.
We also learned that even Brock Purdy’s teammates can’t help but make the Purdy good/pretty good puns.
2. Trevor Lawrence explained Tuesday how he rented out a Waffle House for his post-wild-card game celebration Saturday and also revealed one of his go-to Waffle House orders.
3. NFL wild-card weekend viewership numbers:
Giants-Vikings: 33.2 million
Dolphins-Bills: 30.8 million
Cowboys-Bucs: 30.6 million
Seahawks-Niners: 27.4 million
Ravens-Bengals: 26.8 million
Chargers-Jaguars: 20.6 million
4. If you’re a fan of the ManningCast and want more ManningCast, it’s not going to happen. Peyton and Eli are very happy with just doing 10 episodes a season.
“One thing I think comes through is just how much Eli and I enjoy this,” Peyton Manning told Fast Company. “We laugh a lot. If you maybe go to 17 games, maybe we’re not laughing as much, and it starts to get repetitive. ESPN has certainly mentioned going up to 12 games or more, and Eli and I held strong. We just feel the show is better if we keep it to the 10.”
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5. Danielle Collins had a premature walk-off at the Australian Open today.
6. This week’s SI Media Podcast features an interview with ESPN’s Troy Aikman. Topics covered include:
• Being on-air for Damar Hamlin’s injury
• NFL’s quality-of-play problem
• First year at ESPN
• Why Tom Brady is still good
You can listen to the podcast below or download it on Apple, Spotify and Google.
You can also watch the SI Media Podcast on YouTube.