Monday, August 10, 2009

Football's Kinda Back

So the Hall of Fame Game happened last night. I watched it from beginning to end which is definitely the result of it being actual live football on television and also unlikely to happen again this preseason.

A few things I took away from the Titans' 21-18 win over the Bills: if first team v. first team this far before the start of the real season means anything, the Bills are in for a long season and Tennessee looks pretty tight; the first quarter fake punt was ridiculously awesome; things don't look good for Vince Young's make it or break it season; in fact, make that bad; no, really bad; Chris Mortenson's kid looks dopey.

So, yeah, there you go.

Since the advent of the floating score box overlay over a decade ago, to the first down line, to the on field down and distance graphic, each year seems to bring some sort of presentation tweaks. This season, I'll sometimes talk about them because, let's face it, we can use any bullshitty content we can come up with around here.

The first thing that struck me was that NBC hasn't changed the color of the peacock wipe (Ed: Ewwwww) they use when cutting between live action and replay. It's still the same weird peach color (the color that Crayola used to call flesh tone before they got all inclusive and whatnot) which has always struck me as a weird choice. It looks like a color the designer arbitrarily chose as a filler while they were testing the graphics and then forgot to change before the version was finalized.

While that's merely cosmetic, another choice they've made could feasibly give a viewer a heart attack. Between downs, there's a small graphic that rotates (possibly the down and distance: 2nd and 8 to 3rd and 4, for instance). Problem is, while it's rotating, it goes from black to yellow to black. That flash of yellow in your peripheral vision, I guarantee, is at least subconsciously interpreted as a flag notice. I think a few years ago CBS had something similar, and when I was watching a Packers game, everydamntime Green Bay's defense had a third down stop and I caught that flash my blood pressure rose a little.

And speaking of CBS, for at least the last few years, their down and distance change has been accompanied by a barely audible peepy sound that has always sounded like a whistle. Also a bad idea.

Finally, NBC is really miking the hell out of the quarterback. Sunday night isn't just Football Night, it's now Listen For Swears Night.

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