Q&A: Terry Bradshaw on the perfect QB, Bradys longevity and reality TV – Sportsnet.ca

September 20th, 2020 7:58 am

If youre like me during the COVID-19 pandemic, your TV viewing habits have consisted of two guilty pleasures: reality TV and, of late, the return of live sports.

Terry Bradshaw is synonymous with live sporting events, as hes helped set up NFC matchups on FOXs NFL coverage since 1994. A Pro Football Hall of Famer, four-time Super Bowl-winning quarterback and broadcast icon, Bradshaw is adding reality TV star to his resume with his new show, The Bradshaw Bunch, premiering on hayu Canada on Friday, Sept. 18.

I caught up with Bradshaw ahead of the premier of his new show, which will release new episodes for stream or download every Friday, in anticipation of the Week 2 NFL schedule to find out what hes looking for, what players he loves to watch and how playing in his era compares to playing now.

Sportsnet: Did you ever think youd be doing a reality show?

Terry Bradshaw: Well, actually, this is my second reality show.

I did a show with NBC called Better Late Than Never, which is about a bunch of old actors and football players and boxers George Foreman, Henry Winkler, William Shatner and a young comedian named Jeff Dye. We travel around the country, and we did that show for two years and then thought we were going back out. NBC pulled the plug on it. And that was it. So, I have done one before this one.

This show was brought to me by Jason Ehrlich, who was executive producer of Better Late Than Never. He had come to a birthday party and he had seen my three girls and how they interacted with me and how much fun we had together. Light bulb went off.

I said, OK, lets do this. Away we went.

SN: Weve all consumed more TV during the pandemic. What are you watching? What reality shows do you watch?

TB: Duck Dynasty was pretty much it. Thats the only reality show I watch. Im not a reality guy. Im an old movies guy. I like to watch old movies. My wife, she likes to watch old movies. We love documentaries and we love sporting events. So glad they are back.

SN: On your NFL show on FOX, youve got a couple of co-hosts who have done some reality shows themselves. Have they weighed in?

TB: Howie thinks its going to be a hit. Jimmy thinks the same thing. He thinks its going to be funny. Michael Strahan was kind of surprised that I would do something like this, but he thinks it will be good.

All of them are very, very encouraging. Theyre very polite because theyre really good friends. Now, the show airs Friday, though. By Sunday, when I get there Sunday, they may go, T.B., what were you doing? They might be getting ready to rib me waiting for me in my parking spot on Sunday. But otherwise, everybodys asking, Whens the show? Whens it going to be on?

And its about my family. They know my family. They know my grandkids. So, you know, theyre very supportive right now.

SN: The reality show that you help bring to us as viewers is the NFL. Looking at the star character of the league, Patrick Mahomes and his big arm, you have something in common with him: when you played you were known for your arm talent. How do you evaluate the way guys like Mahomes can spin it now?

TB: I think Mahomes has got a good arm. He doesnt have a howitzer, but he can throw it. Hes very good in traffic. Great peripheral vision, throws it from all angles, very accurate, good under pressure, quick release. Tremendous talent.

Weve got other guys. The guy who played against him in Week 1, Deshaun Watson. He can really spin it and probably spin it a little better than Patrick. Hes not Patrick Mahomes, but is awfully good. Weve got Ben Roethlisberger who can really throw.

But the face of our league is, youre right, Patrick Mahomes from Kansas City. That is just a special talent and fun to watch any time. Hes one of the few players that I know, hes on television, Im watching that. Of course, my wife is a Kansas City Chiefs fan, so I have to be careful when Im on the air. Stay off of our boy, she says, because he sent her a signed helmet. And so, you know what that means. He bought my mouth.

SN: But I mean, the Pittsburgh Steelers helped you buy your house. So how does that work?

TB: Exactly.

Well, she knows for a fact that if it went between Pittsburgh and Kansas City, youre history. Thats where you draw the line. Lets not get crazy here. I mean, I spent 14 years at this organization. We won a lot of Super Bowls.

SN: If you had to build the perfect QB from the guys playing right now you could Frankenstein it up how would you build it?

TB: I would start with the strength of Roethlisberger.

I would follow that up with Tom Brady. I mean, theres so many guys that have the clutch gene. He is very much clutch. Hes great in the fourth quarter. Hes great in overtime. Its just amazing. I probably take Bradys calmness under pressure.

Ill take Drew Brees for accuracy. Escape ability, athleticism and the wow factor is Mahomes.

Three out of the four quarterbacks have strong arms. Probably fans would have no idea the strongest arm of all of them Brady believe it or not has a very strong arm.

Ive got a pretty good answer. You take those four players; I got a pretty good quarterback. Yeah, you win some games there.

SN: Youre in your 70s. Youve got so much energy, but you mentioned Tom. Hes 43 now and still playing. Can you imagine that?

TB: Yes, I can imagine playing nowadays at that age as much as I love playing. Had I not gotten hurt, my goal was to play and last to 40. I missed that target as I was 33.

But I missed it by seven years. So, I cant imagine. But I also understand it. Why not? Listen to what a young man does. A kid does. He dreams of playing in the NFL. Its his passion. And he gets there, and the dream comes true. And then its, I want to win championships and that comes true. And theres just nothing greater in life. Experiencing your dream unfold in front of you. And you have tremendous success at what you envision is the greatest job in the world, playing quarterback in the National Football League.

So, yeah, I certainly can get it. Why would you want to retire when youre doing what you want to do? You love what you want to do. You have a good team around you. So, youre competitive and youre making tons of money. Why give that up? So, I dont blame him whatsoever. I got hurt. And once it was over, you cant go back. Im proud of what hes doing and all of what hes doing. There is not many guys willing to do what he is doing this, you know, vegetable ice cream and stuff like that.

God bless him for that. Sounds like horrible, horrible ice cream. If Im eating ice cream, Im eating real, peach ice cream. Thats the real deal.

SN: Absolutely (laughs). Is todays game easier for quarterbacks now than when you played?

TB: Yeah, absolutely.

Professional football in Canada or in the National Football League, to play the position of quarterback, its not easy to handle the pressure, block everything from your mind, separate coverages, deliver the ball without realizing that people are hanging all over you.

Ive got one of the greatest pictures, most exciting pictures I have of myself: just all you see are people and at the very top of my hand with the football coming out of my hand and you can hardly see me.

That is the coolest picture I have ever seen. I just love that it shows me that Im oblivious to whats around me. And thats what you have to have to play quarterback.

It is easier to play in the sense that when I played in the 70s, you could get hit, you could get body slammed. You didnt have a suspension helmet, early part of my career, no chinstraps. I mean, the rules were changed back in the late 70s. It slowly started changing to where you couldnt jab or jam a receiver at the line of scrimmage up to five yards. Get your hands off of it as opposed to bump-and-run all over the football field.

So, its a totally different game. The game you see today in the NFL is the old AFL of the 60s. Thats why Ive often said 40, 50 times passing is the reason they did it because passing the football is exciting. And the NFL of the first 70 years from the first day, up to about 78, was just hard run, run, run, play action, run, run. Boring.

And the merger of the AFL and NFL was predominantly because the AFL was gaining. They were garnering ratings, taking them away from CBS, and it was because their brand of football was exciting. It was really fun to watch.

And what youre seeing today is the 60s of the AFL, especially in the last year. Its so much fun to watch.

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Q&A: Terry Bradshaw on the perfect QB, Bradys longevity and reality TV - Sportsnet.ca

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