My latest Chicago Tribune column is on how former Bears Doug Buffone and Ed O’Bradovich still hit hard after all these years. This time on their Bears postgame shows.
You also can access the column via my Twitter feed at Sherman_Report.
This is one of the most enjoyable stories I’ve written in 30-plus years in the business. I hung out with the two throw-backs last Sunday. All I can is that it was the most fun you can have watching the Bears lose 51-23 to New England.
From the column:
I could have gone to Rush Street last night and found 24 players who could do better than the Bears did today.”
Doug Buffone opening last Sunday’s “Doug and OB Show.”
The game is only a couple of minutes old when Doug Buffone and Ed O’Bradovich erupt for the first time.
Before kickoff of the Bears-Patriots game, Buffone went off on a two-minute rant on how he hates seeing the Bears allow the tight end come off the line untouched. Sure enough, Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski catches the first of his three touchdown receptions without anybody laying a finger on him.
Buffone is 70 now and he is wearing relaxed-fit blue jeans. But he is so irate at what he just saw, he leaps out of his chair with the same first-step quickness he had as a young Bears linebacker chasing down Packers running backs.
“C’mon, are you kidding me?” said Buffone, waving his arms. “You have to pop that guy at the line. When we were playing, that tight end would be on his back.”
The explosion hardly was their last as they watched and suffered in relative privacy. However, it played perfectly to their wheelhouse. A few hours later, the two throwback Bears from another era emerged, primed to hammer the Bears of this era.
Buffone and O’Bradovich have become must-listen radio for frazzled fans on their brutally honest Bears postgame “Doug and OB Show” on WSCR-AM 670. They did their show on location Sunday to a full house at Durbin’s in Tinley Park.
It has been decades since Buffone, who played from 1966-80, and O’Bradovich, a fixture on the Bears defensive line from 1962-71, played their last games, but the passion and competitive fire hardly has faded. Exhibit A: O’Bradovich quickly corrected a caller to the show who noted that the ’85 Bears had the best defense of all time.
“Second best. The ’63 Bears were the best,” said O’Bradovich, who was on that championship team.
Buffone and O’Bradovich rejoice when the Bears win. Yet their vintage work comes after Bears defeats. Make no mistake, the former players whose first coach was George Halas take this personally.
“You’re damn right, I do,” the 74-year old O’Bradovich said.