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Joe Buck shrugs off Giants fans' complaints about his helmet catch call with Eli Manning

Yahoo! Sports logo Yahoo! Sports 12/7/2021 Jack Baer

Joe Buck has long been a lightning rod for fan criticism, and quite possibly the biggest complaint has been his perceived lack of excitement during his games' biggest moments.

His call of the New York Giants' famous helmet catch, in which all the Fox announcer said at the end of the play was "Caught by Tyree," is considered one such moment. Naturally, the matter came up when he joined Eli Manning on ESPN's "Monday Night Football" Manning-cast.

Joe Buck: 'I kind of low-keyed' helmet catch

During the fourth quarter of Monday's game between the New England Patriots and Buffalo Bills, Buck mocked Giants fans for their complaints about how he handled the biggest play of Super Bowl XLII, but he did admit he "sort of low-keyed" the moment.

Buck blamed the uncertainty of the play and the size of the Super Bowl stage for his hesitation, then pointed to his later call of Manning's game-winning touchdown pass to Plaxico Burress as a better call:

Buck's comments:

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"When you're up there and you know you're doing the game for 100 million people, you've to be really sure. First of all, Eli gets no credit for getting out of that pile of bodies and even throwing the ball. And then all Giants fans are like 'Come on, Buck. I mean, the guy catches the ball on his helmet, give me a break, man. You're supposed to be excited, for my Giants.' I'm like 'I wasn't sure he caught the ball!' If you're going to do it for 100 million people, you better damn well be right. 

"So, I kind of low-keyed it, we got through it. I still saved one of the best calls I've ever head was Eli to Plaxico Burress at the end of that game was magical."

The younger Manning at least seemed to accept the explanation, telling Buck "you totally redeemed yourself" on the Burress call.

That wasn't the only entertaining moment Buck, who continues to loosen with age, had during his Manning-cast appearance. The Mannings pushed Buck into attempting to call part of the game without his usual prep, leading to a new nickname for Bills running back Devin Singletary: "Whoever the hell that is."

Buck, who was calling in from Cabo, Mexico, later used a cheeky question from Peyton Manning to burn the heck out of his host:

With a 14-10 win in hand for the Patriots at the end of the game, Buck concluded his appearance with a Fox plug on his rival network. That may hurt his chances of coming back.


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