Former NBC Sports anchor Bob Costas addressed his recent departure with ESPN on Sunday, largely attributing the exodus to controversial comments about the NFL's handling of concussion matters.
During an episode of E:60, Costas claims he was unexpectedly pulled off hosting duties for last year's Super Bowl in Minneapolis – on short notice.
"I remember being told I can no longer host the Super Bowl," Costas recalled, before adding that he had apparently, "crossed the line."
That line might have involved the following comment, while participating in a roundtable discussion at the University of Maryland, circa November 2017: "This game destroys people's brains," said Costas, speaking generally of football.
To be fair, Costas – who joined NBC Sports in 1979 – has long been critical of football, ranging from the sport's lack of real-time action to its top-speed collisions in the open field.
In that vein, speaking out against concussions shouldn't have surprised viewers or TV executives.
In 2016, NBC Sports hired anchor/play-by-play announcer Mike Tirico for various projects, covering the NFL, NHL, PGA, horse racing, Notre Dame football and the Olympics.
At the time, it was assumed Costas would maintain the No. 1 spot with the network; but things changed shortly after that, with Tirico serving as the prime-time host of the 2018 Winter Olympics (PyeongChang, South Korea).