Good times seem to be a-poppin’ here at the very first official podcast of the National Football League.
First of all, optimism abounds now on the labor front. The Commissioner and DeMaurice Smith are travelling/breakfast buddies, the lawyers are exchanging proposals, and everything may soon be coming up roses.
And we’re now just ONE week away from the biggest and most entertaining podcast this show has ever produced: the “Curb Your Enthusiasm” podcast with Larry David, Jeff Garlin, Bob Einstein and JB Smoove all in-studio. That show posts next Thursday, July 7th, and also debuts that very night on NFL Network at 10 p.m. ET.
In the meantime, we only put together a show with one of the funniest guys in film who has a new movie coming out, along with a nine-time Grammy Award winner currently on tour in an arena near you. That would be Kevin James and John Legend.
Legend makes his second appearance on the podcast, but the very first since his beloved Ohio State football program got turned upside-down and inside out. We talk about that with Legend, who happens to be a big fantasy football player and also believes in the optimism ruling the labor front right now.
As for James, whose new movie “Zookeeper” opens in a theater near you on July 8th, he makes what I hope is the first of many appearances on the podcast. It offered a great opportunity for James to opine on one of his greatest passions: New York Jets football. What does he think of his team’s chances of finally getting over the AFC Championship hump and into the Super Bowl? Does he like Rex Ryan’s coaching philosophy? We talk about it all. Plus, James also tells a funny story from the set of his new movie that involves a wolf and a bottle of shampoo.
In between those two guests, we find the Renaissance Man of the NFL, veteran linebacker Dhani Jones. We get along swimmingly for many reasons. First, we’re both University of Michigan Wolverines. Secondly, we’ve known each other for years due to his frequent appearances on NFL Network. And lastly, but most importantly: Jones may just be the only person I’ve met who is more self-promotional than me. He appears in-studio to promote his new book: “The Sportsman.” But, I frequently felt compelled to interrupt his self-promotion to bust his chops on several fronts and get his forthright thoughts on all things Bengals, including Carson Palmer’s future in the Jungle, as well as his own and that of Chad Ochocinco. What ensues can only be called a rollicking good time.
But all of that only sets the table for the latest podcast appearance for NFL Network reporter/host Kara Henderson, who returns after a few weeks away of rest and relaxation all the while trying to hook up her son’s kindergarten teacher with NFL Network and television-version of the podcast producer Spandan Daftary, aka “Spoon.” Throughout the past few weeks, no topic discussed on this podcast has garnered more curiosity and reaction from the listenership than this potential burgeoning love connection. So, we get the latest from Spoon and Kara on this front … before getting the actual kindergarten teacher on the phone to try to ensure a second date for Spoon. Just call me Chuck Woolery.
Of course, we also discuss some hardcore football in that segment with Kara and Michael Lombardi to suss out if all the optimism swirling around the labor front is warranted.
It better be. I don’t think I could handle the alternative.
Either way, enjoy the podcast. And the Fourth of July. And then next week’s podcast fireworks with David and friends.