Monday, July 18, 2011

Carl Edwards TV Overload

He might be the nicest guy in North America. He might be the best driver in NASCAR. He might have the perfect marriage, a great physique and represent the ultimate dream for a Sprint Cup Series sponsor. That doesn't mean he deserves to be on TV.

The place we would normally see a Sprint Cup Series driver like Carl Edwards is among the personalities being interviewed before and after the races. Should a problem occur during the event, some words from him outside the infield care center or in the garage explaining the situation would make sense. That is not what is happening.

Somehow this season, Edwards is morphing into a NASCAR TV analyst who drives. When he is in the race, he is often the in-race TV reporter. If he happens to drop out, he immediately moves into an on-air position regardless of the network covering the race. No other driver has extended his personal brand with the NASCAR TV partners like Edwards.

Last year ESPN tapped him to appear in the post-race coverage of every Chase for the Championship race. He was not appearing as a driver, but as an analyst. Moments after the professional sports event in which he participated was over, Edwards was on national TV offering opinions from his perspective on the other teams and drivers.

There is no TV network more enamored of Edwards than ESPN. Monday, he will be an in-studio guest analyst on the NASCAR Now panel. Normally comprised of three panelists, ESPN will just add a chair and let Edwards sit among the experts hired to talk about him and the other athletes.

It was a head-scratcher when ESPN let Nationwide Series owner Rusty Wallace call Nationwide Series races. It was puzzling when ESPN let Brad Daugherty continue in his analyst role after becoming a Sprint Cup Series owner. Both of those examples pale in comparison to Edwards continued presence on ESPN.

Dale Jarrett, Andy Petree, Rusty Wallace, Brad Daugherty, Ricky Craven, Johnny Benson, Kenny Schrader, Terry Blount, Marty Smith, David Newton, Ryan McGee, Ed Hinton and Dr. Jerry Punch all contribute to ESPN's NASCAR TV content. That is what they do for a living.

Just as there are a limited number of seats for drivers in the Sprint Cup Series, there are a limited number of opportunities on the TV side of the NASCAR fence. ESPN filled those TV seats long before the season started. That is why someone must be pushed aside to make room for Edwards on the Monday NASCAR Now program.

Whenever Edwards shows up in the TV booth or studio, he is taking advantage of a fundamental conflict of interest. He is welcomed as a current NASCAR driver of whom the ESPN personalities would normally ask questions. Instead, Edwards has perfected the transition to an analyst offering comments of his own.

That immediately changes the on-air dynamic because none of the ESPN personalities have been involved in the racing. Suddenly, there is someone on the set who can top any opinion they have to offer because only he has been there and done that. It puts the ESPN analysts in a very awkward position.

At age 31, it certainly does not appear that Edwards will be retiring from driving soon and seeking a TV career. While other NASCAR stars like Jeff Gordon and Jimmie Johnson are TV friendly, there has never been an ongoing dynamic quite like the current Edwards situation.

When SPEED asked Elliott Sadler to join the network's RaceHub show for a Monday segment, it was because Sadler had left the Sprint Cup Series. In his current TV roles, Edwards continually puts himself in the position of offering commentary on athletes, owners and team members with whom he actively competes.

This season there have been several other drivers who have visited the NASCAR Now studios and appeared on camera. While those appearances were strictly for publicity, the Monday Edwards appearance feels much more like an audition.

It should be interesting to see what ESPN TV role might be assumed by Edwards as the network takes over the Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series telecasts for the rest of the season beginning with the Brickyard 400 in two weeks.

How do you feel about this issue? Many fans enjoyed Edwards on the air from the ESPN infield pit studio on Saturday after his car fell out of the Nationwide Series race. Others felt that his ability to step into that type of national TV exposure was unfair to his competitors.

We welcome your comments on this topic. To add your opinion, just click on the comments button below. Thank you for taking the time to stop by The Daly Planet.


terri said...

I have no problems with it. He's intelligent, offers smart insights, and is entirely credible. And he's easy on the eyes.

What's the saying? "Make hay while the sun shines." Ride on, Carl.

Anonymous said...

Let me preface my comments by stating that Carl is not the driver I root for or even in the top five, but I thoroughly enjoyed his perspective from the booth this weekend. It boiled down to how objective his comments were. Yes, you have a built-in conflict of interest, but I don't have a problem if your professional and personal biases don't creep into the discourse. Honestly, I've been a bit distrustful of Elliot Sadler due to his relationship with his boss (Harvick) and who Harvick works for (Childress). Not because of the relationship per se, but how he'd nuance his comments about KHI and RCR. Most of the TV hosts and analysts leave a lot to be desired. I can recall years ago when Rusty was a regular host. For whatever reason, DJ either filled in or was added to the booth as he ended his driving career. It was remarkable the technical and driving insights he brought to the table because of his relevancy. I don't have a problem with active drivers in the booth if they are objective.

Donna said...

I enjoy seeing Carl on after he is out of the race in the booth, He brings a freshness and honesty to his calls of the race. I would much rather hear how the track really is from him then from people who only have to guess about it. Bringing an active driver to the booth adds to the show. Since he has not been on Nascar Now yet I can not comment on how that all works out but I am sure he will bring his first hand knowledge of many of the issues and talk about them the group which isn't a bad thing.

OSBORNK said...

Edwards is the current "hot" personality. Whether it is a driver, actor, singer, politician or even criminal, the public can't get enough of them and the media satisfies their desires. Edwards is the Hollywood model of the "perfect" driver/celebrity and he will be in demand until the next "hot" thing comes along.

Also, the booth personalities have gotten stale and there is a need to freshen the the booth up. The current talking heads need to be replaced or challenged to do a better job.

Anonymous said...

"That immediately changes the on-air dynamic because none of the ESPN personalities have been involved in the racing. Suddenly, there is someone on the set who can top any opinion they have to offer because only he has been there and done that. It puts the ESPN analysts in a very awkward position. "

Yes it's weird, but it's nice to hear something from someone who has been there and done that, recently. Sometimes as recent as 30 minutes before. :)

Rather than experience from back in the day (double digits) years ago.

There should be a little more consideration for conflicts of interest. Since I have been following this site, it's very apparent that Rusty Wallace has to choose words carefully when one of his cars is on camera and generally being destroyed. Other times, he's working the sponsors in as if he'd won the race himself....gotta ask WHY is the 62/66 car on the screen at that point anyhow?

There really out to be a standard on how people are chosen for broadcasts, and how they can mention the car's sponsors during the broadcast. Racing is so tied to the sponsor, how do you make it even? I don't know. Soccer is the olny other sport I can see tied to the sponsor...they have it on their jersey. I don't watch, how is that handled?

James said...

The presence of a current COT driver in the booth adds an insight to the broadcast that is sorely lacking as we all witnessed this past weekend. You can not take away the fact that when Carl was on screen he added a fresh perspective to the booth. I wonder when the networks will understand that the FACE OF NASCAR is not DW and Larry Mac. I welcome Carl to the mix, I want technical information about the cars and the track, I already understand the tires are round.

With the current state of NASCAR the only way to attract new fans and try to keep the old ones, is to accept the fact that drivers and crew cheifs a decade removed from competition are not the most knowledgeable folks to have reflecting the image that is necessary to move the sport forward. One can only take so many "war stories" that have little revelance to what is happening today. Add the fact that these folks have many ties to manufactures sponsors and NASCAR management and the whole creditability issue looms overhead to cloud the process. They may not all be that bad, but they all are not that great! In fact there are way too many of them. What is needed in the booth is a great PxP person and CREDITABLE color commentators to support that person. These guys on SPEED wear shirts with their sponsors name on them, they own teams looking for sponsorship, and this causes even the most dedicated person to be in conflict. Dignity is not something that is high on their list of neessary traits to hold dear.

It is going to take more than Lindsey going to ESPN to turn the sinking ship back to safe harbor.

Buschseries61 said...

First, I can't stand Edwards. I don't connect with his 'golly gee, I'm sorry' nice guy persona - it's artificial to me. His absurd wreckless moments with Brad Keselowski last season solifified that.

Soon, he began his ESPN post-race duties. While this feud remianed in the news, one driver had an active role on tv - Edwards. Talk about awkward.

There are positives. The fans have a better insight on the race since Edwards is a top regular competetor. Edwards has offered commentary better than certain network analysts.

From a historical perspective, DW & Kyle Petty did a few Busch races as analysts in the late 90's while they were still full time in Cup. But it was the Busch series, not their home in Winston Cup.

Edwards is put in the position to be judgemental of his friends, enemies, and his own team as an analyst. It is part of the job. If there is another drama series like Edwards/Keselowski, can he continue the same fake grin and judge his competitors as if nothing happened? With Edwards in the middle of Silly Season 2012, can the topic even be touched while he contributes? It's a tough situation for ESPN and mixed for the fans.

Anonymous said...

I like him better behind the Mic than behind the wheel. At least so far he hasn't been near as agressive or tried to kill anyone behind the Mic.

I think he's excellent behind the Mic, and great behind the wheel. I have no issue with it, ESPN (and race coverage in general) hasn't pretended to be impartial in quite a while, their role is now to sell the sport. When we lost David Poole we lost one of the few honest voices left in high profile NASCAR coverage.

Anonymous said...

Put me down as one who enjoys Carl's contributions and insights. He brings a fresh perspective and generally lightens things up.

As far as conflicts of interest go, I was surprised that Rusty jumped right in on Saturday describing and defending his son's actions in that wreck. There are others in the booth who could do that. Rusty should be advised to keep silent when his teams are involved in an incident.

Roland said...

I dont have a problem with him joining the broadcast after falling out. He gives better info than Brad ever will. My issue is with ESPN. He gets a lengthy interview before each Nationwide race, gets interviewed before and after his qualifying runs. 90% of the time he is the in race reporter. ESPN is in love with the guy.

17972 B. C. said...

I have no issue with it either. The NFL uses players and in their studio on their bye weeks and playoffs. The other 3 stick n ball sports use them too during the regular season. On the list of issues with NASCAR telecasts, this one is an "eh".
Now using Owners as part of your year long coverage.....

Anonymous said...

I, for one, cannot stand the Eddie Haskell persona of Carl Edwards. He may be the darling of ESPN, and he may have insight, but every time I see him, all I can see is his attempted assault of his own team mate, Matt Kenseth and his many out of control actions on the track, that have the potential to harm other drivers. What I cannot understand is, there are 42 other drivers who can provide the same first person commentary, but ESPN, like they do during their races, falls in love with one person/driver, and ignores all the others. I know when Carl's face shows up on the screen, I change the channel.

Anonymous said...

Hey John, I guess my comment is once again the Dave Blaney's, Brian Vickers, Martin Truex's of the world are never seen on any tv. Especially when they fall out of the race.
FOX, SPEED and TNT is in love with Kyle and his irrelevant win totals in the not in the CUP series. He's ALWAYS on TV.
It sickened me to see Steve Wallace flat run over guys and hear Mr. Hot Rod in hte booth say nothing. Except excuses. But ESPN loves him.

This whole TV thing needs blown up and start over.

ESPN hasn't even started yet and I sure hate to think they are next up.

Thank the lord for MRN and PRN.

Anonymous said...

I don't see a difference between what Carl is doing with ESPN and what Michael Waltrip did and still does with SPEED.

For several years it seemed you couldn't turn on a SPEED NASCAR related telecast without having Michael give some type of analysis. He was often an in-race reporter for Fox and SPEED and was always involved with special programming.

It is possible to argue that Carl may be taking this a step further because of ESPN's power and reach beyond the world of racing, but to me it is more a matter of SPEED opened the pandora's box many years ago and deserves most of the blame for this type of behavior.

MRM4 said...

Carl offers some interesting insight whenever is it playing the role of analyst. Still, he should not be running up to the booth to call a race when he falls out of it. I know it's done in other sports. It shouldn't be done in any of them.

One thing I dread about ESPN taking over the Cup coverage is Carl Edwards overload. He'll be everywhere, especially since he's leading the points.

Mike in Pittsburgh said...

I'm not really a big fan of his in the first place but in the booth he is rubbing me the wrong way. Next year if he is with Gibbs there is no way I will be able to stomach the bromance between him and DW when they are in there together.

Anonymous said...

"I, for one, cannot stand the Eddie Haskell persona of Carl Edwards. He may be the darling of ESPN, and he may have insight, but every time I see him, all I can see is his attempted assault of his own team mate, Matt Kenseth and his many out of control actions on the track, **that have the potential to harm other drivers.**"

Is racing not dangerous enough any more? I have seen some real doozy crashes that guys have just wallked away from and often raced the next day. The most recent bad hit was the truck nose into the wall on Saturday, but it alsmost seems like a non-issue to these guys.

The split personality that *any* of these guys have in wrecking one minute, shilling for the sponsors the next (when the cameras are on) is amazing. Seeing Morgan Shepherd getting knocked out last week, he actually showed real emotion. It hit him in the wallet as well.

Anonymous said...

Buschseries61 and Anonymous 11:42 - I agree with you. I absolutely cannot stand Carl Edwards and cringe whenever I see him or are forced to listen to him. I find his tv act to be so phony and truly believe under that facade is a nasty person (as stated by Anonymous going after Kenseth and I believe there was also an incident going after Harvick, not to mention his ontrack issues with Keselowski). There are certainly other Cup AND Nationwide AND Truck drivers who can fill in and give that same insight without the "overload" of Carl Edwards. And, if the rumors are true that he is joining Gibbs - I can't wait to see the fireworks amongst Denny Hamlin, Kyle Busch and Edwards - three manic personalities.

MtnVwJay (forgot my password)

Anonymous said...

Carl Edwards is as fake as a $2 bill. He has shown us his true identity on numerous occasions. He reminds me of a politician who says one thing and does the opposite He is untrustworthy, counterfeit, and a bully to boot.

When ESPN hired him as an analyst, I stopped watching the after-race show. The fact that he can now give "his" opinion is conspiratorial in relation to the other drivers, and the worst kind of pandering and self-promotion. Now I will not watch Nascar Now.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Anon 12:28PM,

Just so we are on the same page.

The original TWIN show featured 3 active drivers and was themed that way. It was goofy and irreverent.

In my memory, M. Waltrip never appeared as an analyst on a Sprint Cup Series telecast when his car fell out of the event.

Currently, he works the Truck Series for SPEED because he is an owner in other series.

I have been critical of Waltrip for his role on many TV shows on SPEED. Bear in mind shows from the track like RaceDay, Victory Lane and NASCAR Live are actually produced by the NASCAR Media Group for SPEED as part of the TV contract.

My point with Edwards is that he is actively in contention for the Sprint Cup Championship and at the same time is offering analysis and commentary on his competitors on national TV.

There are lots of views on this topic and I hope we continue to hear them on this post. Thanks again for your comment.


Anonymous said...

We get the Waltrip overload from FOX/SPEED all the time. Overloading on something good is far better than overloading on something bad. Carl is everything the Waltrips are not. Well spoken, smart, intelligent, witty, and offers insight that has credibility. I find the Waltrips are wrong about simple things as often as they are right.

Anonymous said...

I like it when Carl comes up to the booth. I think he is being respectful and knowledgeable (so far). I wish he didn't have time because he is too busy driving his car!

Sam said...

Everyone is making some very valid comments here. Carl is certainly either liked or not. But I don't think it's all that bad of a deal if he's willing to come and talk about a N'wide race he's fallen out of.

He's not the first guy to do that. Remember Neil Bonnett at Talladega?

If he fell out of a Cup race and went on TV as an analyst during the same race that would be a little overboard to me there. But not a N'wide race. He's not running for points.

Like many have said, let's get some former drivers in the both who have actually won a race at some point since 1994. DW and Larry Mac need a permanent vacation.

Anonymous said...

I don't necessarily think that Larry Mac needs a vacation, but let's go a little deeper than "cooling is affected by a hot dog wrapper on the radiator opening".

They always talk about different setups between drivers...what's different? Expand on that.

Let's talk about the new tired Goodyear brings to each race. They all look black. Why do they keep changing them from track to track? Let's learn something from their learning something.

I'm a driver (road course ringer, sorta). I have one kinda tires I bring to every event (it's all I can afford). I'm also my own crew/car chief, fueler and hauler driver. A lot of the people watching this sport are gearheads, let's go a little deeper.

DewCrew88 said...

I do not like Carl the least bit, he has shown us what kind of person he is with almost killing Brad K on numerous occasions.

That being said outside of Larry Mac (who I think has a ton of technical knowledge and has kept up with the info on car setup as he shows us on Nascar Performance) nobody in the booth of any broadcast has the slightest clue what goes into setting these cars up anymore. The mix of aero and suspension setup are so intertwined now that it is incredible.

Add on top of that the fact that not one of the drivers in the booth, except for Dale Jarret (at the very end of his career) probably never even touched a COT. Add to that the COT he drove was a COT in its infancy before they discovered that they can run the minimum legal springs on both front corners because of the bump stops in the car.

I dont mind hearing from a driver who can provide technical insight into the broadcast, I liked when they had Brian Vickers come out and talk on a few broadcasts last year too.

Majority of the problem with the broadcast (when we actually get lucky enough to watch some between commercials) as mentioned here is the fact that they dumb everything down. They dont explain football to you when you watch a football game do they? However, talking about the mental game that goes into restarts and the technical work required to set the cars up for each tracks isnt dumbing the sport down. Its opening up a whole world that many dont even know about if you just show them digger hiding from crashes.

glenc1 said...

I don't think Carl's 'aw shucks' persona is fake. I think he's just more of a Jeckyll/Hyde kind of's real in the moment, but so was some of his rather odd behavior over the last few years (the Matt Kenseth & Kevin Harvick incidents...). But quite honestly, I think his contributions are a lot more immediate and realistic than DW, who hasn't raced in years. I think of him more as a 'contributor' than a reporter. The NFL has had current players on their shows during the season (from players with injuries). Once in a while an owner or related person will show up in the TV booth during a game. I've seen tennis tournaments where a current player will go an a show & comment about other players. I don't think it's that unusual on a 'from time-to-time basis.' Carl doesn't go on there and bash other drivers/owners. It's not like he hasn't disclosed who he is and who signs his paychecks. As long as he tries to be reasonably objective I don't have a problem with it; he's well spoken and interesting. I never saw the 'Chase' show on SPEED with him & Byrnes, but didn't a lot of people say they missed that the next season? Not sure what the difference is, even if he wasn't in the Chase that year, he had teammates who were.
Rusty is a regular paid-for analyst with a giant conflict of interest. I think sometimes he doesn't comment on the 66 because he feels that conflict and he waits for the others to take that over. (Though he did blame the 66 for that last wreck, I believe. And probably was cringing....

I don't pay much attention to the in race reporter deal (isn't some of that sponsor driven? Not sure.) But if they're using him more than average, then yes, I think they should spread it around, ditto on the pre/post interviews. Occasional booth appearances are fine with me; I haven't felt them 'overdo' so far, but I wouldn't want to see that happen either.

Anonymous said...

Seems like I agree with the remarks that say Carl is phony, he is agressive, has shown that he has no real regard for other drivers and there is dishonesty in a lot of his remarks. If and when he comes on as a tv personality, I just turn the volumn off and find other things to do. We definitely have Carl overload and to me it is plain annoying. Whether it was him going after Harvick, Kenseth, Keselowski or Jr years ago, he shows how easy it is to switch from a destrutive attitude to that "Look at me, I am so sweet" attitude that is just sickening. I just don't buy his back stabbing and phony attitude which in turn makes it so hard to listen to and watch him. But as Anonymous at 10:58 said, at least he has not been dangerous or tried to kill anyone behind the mic.

GA Red

Zieke said...

ANON. 12:28 I believe I see a difference between Carl and Mikey. When Carl's driving is finished he has the time to do some TV. What I don't understand is how does Mikey have the time to do all this TV he does, with him being an owner? Is he really that useless that his race team doesn't need his input or even being with them? You don't see Roush, Hendrick,or Childress doing junk like that. They must have better things to do with their time.

Anonymous said...

Sam--a few weeks back he was in the TNT studio after he fell out of a Cup race He was with Lindsay & Larry Mac in their studio.

After his bully attitude & not caring if he kills someone, he's fallen on my list, but don't have an issue with him in the studio if he's fallen out. As many others have stated, he brings an insight that the other analysts can't regardless of "how many they talked to before the race" or "how it was back when I raced" statements.

He's shown that he fits in & allows Allen to do his job while answering questions or providing his two cents. I'm sure he'll be the same on NN.

As far as it not being fair, many drivers can barely get through their weekly interviews whether it's after a qualifying run or their media center appearances. Few I'm sure would be comfortable in that TV analyst role. But if a driver really wanted to I'm sure that their PR person could contact the folks in Bristol on that :).

Anonymous said...

Hey Zieke
Yeah they have a lot more to do than Mikey. Like winning Championships. Not pawning Aarons dream/nightmare machine off on us.
Carl...get off TV and help Jack. He's about to go belly up if he loses Aflac and UPS in addition to Crown being gone at years end.
That's should be the TALK of the garage and media.
Going to Home Depot now, maybe see Sliced Bread at the cashier's desk.
Cause Cup racing ain't for him.

Patti said...

I enjoyed Carl's in the booth Saterday. It was interesting to here his view of the track, tires, and other race cars, from someone that was out there racing. As for being biases, he has seemed to do a decent job walking the line,unlike some other analyst's.

mrclause said...

What I see Cousin Carl doing is pulling off a marketing coup at contract time that equals anything Danica and Go Daddy has done!! He doesn't even use an agent. Not one of the dumber drivers!

Being it's NASCAR it shouldn't be surprising that the networks have no more credibility than they show, kind of short on the ethical side as well. If the networks or NASCAR really cared about this product they'd pay attention to the fans complaints about the shows. They give us Adam Alexander, Marty Reid, who are totally out of their element. They overload us with the self promoting Waltrips and Wallaces. Then there's the Big Brad, yet another team owner and this one has nothing to bring to the table except his goofy laugh. There are good announcers being wasted that would actually enhance the production.

But as I said in the beginning, this is NASCAR and we shouldn't be surprised. The networks, NASCAR, were well represented by Bruton, it's all about the Benjamin s folks, the fans are only $$$ signs.

Palmetto said...

Let's face it, none of the former drivers working as analysts have driven competitively in several years. They've never driven a COT, either winged or spoiler version. There are a few tracks they've never driven. Next year will bring fuel injection, another change that will further date the experience of these retired veterans.

Carl brings a more up-to-date viewpoint. He also expresses himself better than any former driver except Ricky Craven. Apparently the broadcast producers don't see him as an obstacle or they wouldn't let him in the booth. My only objection is Carl showing up regularly instead of rotating this among other drivers. On the other hand, does he have an early finish often enough to make this a topic of discussion?

I don't see the conflict myself. It certainly isn't as noticeable as this weekend's Nationwide race. It was painful listening to Ricky Craven try to tap-dance around Steven Wallace's aggressive style while Rusty sat there beside him.

Anonymous said...

Not only is ESPN corrupt to the bone, the comments on this post indicate to me the corruption you document and I allege is ok with everyone. The only serious objections hinge on the likes or dislikes of everyone for Carl Edwards. Who or what the population likes or dislikes is irrelevant where corruption is concerned-corruption must be rooted out and exposed when it is discovered. Sunlight is a great disinfectant.

ESPN has no oversight of any kind. Those guys are only limited by their imagination. If anyone is troubled by this instance of corruption within the WWL, tighten those belts one more time for the ride will certainly be worse in the years to come.

Palmetto said...

Corruption? Dude, it's televised sports; lighten up. Nobody is slipping them cash to air Edwards. If you don't like ESPN's coverage, don't watch them. Listen to races on MRN and watch the leaderboard on There are similar alternative for other sports.

CaseMoney said...

"I just couldn't let him take the win from me" (Carl Edwards, after violently wrecking Brad Keselowski and consequently, several others, because Brad had the nerve to pass him on the last lap)

"My guys worked too hard for that." (Carl again, because the other teams don't work hard, you see)

That's the real Carl Edwards. Entitled and completely self-absorbed.

I wish he was held more accountable for his numerous dangerous actions by NASCAR media, commentators, etc. But no, he's a total sweetheart.

That said, I wouldn't be opposed to him offering up occasional commentary on ESPN, but where are the other drivers? Why it is just Carl, Carl, Carl? That's not fair to the other drivers, and not fair to the sponsors of the other drivers.

glenc1 said... occurs to me that they know Carl will make the time for it. I wonder how many other drivers just say no because there are just a lot of demands on their time, and if they fall out they prefer to spend it doing other things. They've had Jeff Gordon up there and he was quite good...if they had the opportunity, I would think they would get him. Or a number of others (Burton, Harvick come to mind.)

Anonymous said...

i'm not a huge edwards fan, but he's added a tremendous amount to the broadcasts he's joined... makes me miss TWIN when we got to hear from drivers as analysts every monday.

Anonymous said...

I am ok with having Carl in the booth occasionaly although I do think he is a little phony sometimes but not anywhere near as phony as DW is at all times. Carl does seem to bring a breath of fresh air.

SlashVohaul said...

I'm not really a Carl fan. He has some not so 'aw-shucks' anger issues but I am also not a hater now that he's put that messed-up Keselowski crap behind him. I'm enjoy his view as a driver. I think he's an asset to any telecast he can be a part of. When he's not rattling off sponsors he offers great perspective intelligently. If I can learn, I like. Just, PLEASE, no Cousin Carl and I'm okay.

Vicky D said...

The only problem I have with CE was the time with Matt Kenseth and him trying to kill Brad Keseslowski. He's pleasant enough so it's not bad watching him on these shows. Waiting to hear the latest with who he'll sign with for next year.

Sally said...

Carl Edwards and Kyle Busch have certainly figured out how to give their sponsors a lot of air time even outside the racing. Personally, I'm tired of both of them. I'm sure many other drivers could give just as much insight as either of them, but for some reason, these ase the 'chosen. I'm going to burned out on both of them long before they retire to the booth.

Anonymous said...

I enjoy Carl Edwards coming to the booth when hes out of the race. I wish more drivers would do that.Hes smart & makes sense when he speaks.
I wish more drivers would do that instead of rushing off to their plane.
BTW.. I am not a Carl fan but still enjoy listening to him.

GinaV24 said...

I am not a fan of Edwards, although I don't dislike him. He is very articulate and most of the time when I have seen him appear in his "analyst" role, he seems to be more balanced in his comments than many of the others in the booth.

that said, I didn't like it last year and I'm not in favor of it this year. A soundbite is one thing, a specific interview is part of being a driver in NASCAR, but as you pointed out, there are already far too many conflicts of interest in NASCAR - at ESPN and Fox, too for me to like it.

I like Allen Bestwick very much but I don't particularly enjoy ESPN's coverage of NASCAR so I avoid a lot of it.

Mdulian said...

I like watching Carl commentate! He's good at it and it brings great insight to what is really happening on that specific track! While I agree he is removing someone else from their seat and that doesn't seem fair. Sometimes people just can't handle change! I think change is good! That's just my opinion! But who am I?

Sam said...

Don't forget Kyle Petty did drive the COT at the end of his career. So he does have a little experience with it even though he's quick to point out he hasn't driven a car in a while. :)

Anonymous said...

One aspect of this Blog is that I learn so much. Reading these posts, I learned that.."Carl tried to kill Brad Kesolowski...". That's heady stuff!

Anonymous said...

Edwards is articulate, a fine representative of the sport and that is why there is a TV overload of him. If anyone is complaining, maybe their driver should take a page from Edwards play book.

Tracy D said...

I won't watch any show with Cousin Carl. Period.

Anonymous said...

I would like to hear that Carl Edwards' new contract is as a TV analyst instead of a driver. He's better at doing TV. I still won't watch him, but at least he'll be off the track. Of course that's not going to happen. If the rumors are true about him changing teams, then he blatantly lied on NASCAR Now when he said he hadn't yet made up his mind. I never have and never will support any company that sponsors Edwards.

RumdyCreations said...

I think Carl Edwards being in the ESPN booth is great. So far he has been objective and he offers a perspective that the fans seldom get to see. Most of the commentators have been away from the hands on part of the sport for a long time. The best part about Edwards is that is comes off as a real fan of the sport. He loves what he is doing and that transfers to the fans.

Debby said...

As soon as he was out of the race, I told my husband that Carl was headed to the booth. He does bring another, and may I say, more informed opinion. Reading the posts, all you need to do is look carefully at the picture you have used of Carl. We saw him go after Matt @Martinsville. That solidified my opinion of him; not a good one. I would be very disappointed if he was on any broadcast and feel he would be "Rusty Jr".

PammH said...

I am split (much like Carl) on him. Don't like the 'roid part of his personality-ie MK, BK, Jr etc, yet I find his Opie personality quite articulate & informed. Hate it when life isn't black or white, but some crappy shade of gray!

Anonymous said...

and PammH, that's exactly the point so many here have missed. People are rarely all one thing or the other. Sports is filled with many examples of players who could act totally wrong in one circumstance, and totally right in others (and much of it in-between.) I'm not a fan of 'the Carl', but I don't believe he gets into his car thinking about killing anyone (any more than Brad did when he put Carl into the fence.) I don't think when he speaks about racing that he's saying falsehoods or being phony or dishonest. There would be no reason to be when he's talking about those sorts of things. Might he say 'Joe Schmoe is an awesome driver' on TV, and then in private tell someone he can't stand him? Sure. But most of us do that sort of thing from time to time, especially in our workplaces where we have to get along with people. He did some weird stuff, no question about it. But it's not going to make me hate what he says for a few minutes in the booth. I might find myself questioning his POV, as I do any of them, but that's going to happen whenever you have color commentators who've been in the sport, which nearly all sports do.