BOSTON (CBS) – CBS Sports football analyst and WFAN radio host Boomer Esiason came on 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Toucher & Rich show Monday morning, as he does every Monday morning for the length of the NFL season, for his weekly interview.
The discussion started with the Patriots, who traveled to Minnesota and sank the Vikings 30-7 without their star running back Adrian Peterson (more on that later).
The Patriots offense benefited all game long with great field position and turnovers caused by the defense. Tom Brady threw for 149 yards and one touchdown and wasn’t asked to do much more than that.
Afterwards, the 37-year-old signal caller was none too pleased with the job of his unit, as Brady struggled to connect with every pass catcher not named Julian Edelman.
Esiason told T&R he felt the Patriots would bounce back in this game, and is not “all worked up” about the New England offense.
“It was one of those games where the defense set the tone. Defense and special teams. When you’re the quarterback all you gotta do is not screw it up,” said Boomer of the Patriots, and how the defense carried the game. “The defense was in total control. Turnovers, sacks, blocked field goals — it limits the opportunities you have as an offense. So I’m not gonna sit here this morning and get all worked up about not throwing the ball down field. The quarterback numbers don’t reflect who the quarterback truly is.”
Esiason added that with the season fully underway the Patriots effectively “righted the ship” after last week’s second half collapse in the South Florida heat.
“The Patriots showed up and proved people right,” said Boomer.
For a public relations league in a public relations world, the prior week has been described as the worst in the history of the NFL, between the domestic assault cases of Ray Rice, Greg Hardy and Ray McDonald, as well as the child abuse allegations towards Vikings star Adrian Peterson.
A grand jury in Montgomery County, Texas has indicted Peterson with reckless or negligent injury to a child after his 4-year-old son was returned to his mother in Minnesota with a number of cuts on his legs and thighs.
The 4-year-old told the doctor that Peterson had punished him for pushing his brother off a bike by hitting him with a switch.
CBS Sports’ Jim Rome interviewed former NBA star Charles Barkley on Sunday, a man who grew up in the South and has never been known to mince words. Barkley basically defended Peterson and said that that type of punishment occurs in the South on a regular basis, and that we shouldn’t pass judgment on a parent disciplining their child.
Esiason was very critical of Barkley’s assessment of Peterson on Sunday, and didn’t back down off his stance Monday morning with T&R.
“I don’t buy [upbringing] as an excuse. Peterson is 6’1″, 220 pounds talking about hitting his 4-year-old son with what is known as a switch. I never even heard of that until the other night. It’s a tree branch that parents use to whip kids. I found it so reprehensible. I got emotional about it and was very intense about it. It’s no excuse in my eyes.”
Ray Rice has been released the Ravens, Greg Hardy was deactivated from yesterday’s Panthers game and Ray McDonald is still playing as he awaits adjudication. Esiason admits there is no broad brush to paint when it comes to punishment from the NFL, and agrees that every individual situation is different.
However, in Peterson’s situation, Boomer gave his opinion on what needs to be done.
“When it comes to situations like Adrian Peterson, I personally believe he should be, at worst, suspended for the rest of the season. Suspended for the rest of the season, and then look at this case even closer, and then figure out what the law enforcement is going to come up with down in Texas.”
Esiason then compared Peterson to another high-profile off field incident.
“I liken it very much to the Michael Vick case, because at that time people were saying, ‘Oh, that’s how he grew up. That’s all he knew.’ Dog fighting is illegal in this country and it’s reprehensible, much like child abuse is. I think Adrian Peterson is in a well of trouble and I think he should pay a significant price. I don’t give a damn how he grew up.”
Listen below for the full discussion: