Thursday morning viewers of First Take were treated to a relatively rare instance-- a live reaction from the crew in the immediate aftermath of breaking news. It is not often that reports worth discussing drop in the middle of a show and the personalities on-screen voice their instant takes on it. But it happened with the Washington Commanders hiring Dan Quinn to be their head coach.
Upon receiving the news Molly Qerim immediately went to Stephen A. Smith, who gave an incredibly measured explanation for why he did not like the hire in a low monotone that we almost never hear from him.
This leads to a fascinating possibility. What if this is how Stephen A. reacts to all breaking news? Obviously the level of animation he reaches during most of his studio segments is part of the show. Nobody thinks he gets super worked up over Brock Purdy when he's off-screen. But it is amusing to imagine Smith giving his initial take on all news like this before winding himself up to deliver it with authority. It would be quite the contrast for Stephen. A. to calmly receive all news like this before cranking the dial up to 11 and shouting about it.
I'm sure, if given proper time to prepare, he could have gotten extremely emotive over the Dallas Cowboys defensive coordinator getting a job after the disaster he put on against the Green Bay Packers. Because through that lens it is a bit of a tough hire and nobody is a Cowboys Hater quite like ESPN's biggest star. But it seems his default status is reverting way back to the other end of the reaction spectrum and speaking to the viewers like he's on the phone with the bank sorting out an accounting issue.