Approval Ratings – Fred Smerlas

Fred SmerlasIt’s not football season, so we haven’t seen or heard a whole lot of Smerlas recently.

Fred Smerlas is a former Pro Bowl Nose Tackle for Boston College, the Buffalo Bills, San Francisco 49ers and Patriots. He currently is a TV and Radio commentator for WEEI and other outlets. On WEEI, he is mostly teamed with Steve DeOssie, who is also his business partner in their Rhode Island steakhouse.

During football season he also serves as a a contributor to western New York radio stations WGR in Buffalo and WHAM in Rochester.

He is known for picking the Patriots in every single game, something that almost worked last season…




Random Quote

Personally, I think it’s Pedro’s new Shaughnessy hairstyle that might be messing him up, but whatever is going on, Martinez needs to get back on track or he can forget about George Steinbrenner dangling many millions for many years on a guy with John Burkett stuff.

— Dan Shaughnessy, Boston Globe, Sept 9th, 2004.
  • FCM

    His weekly show in Rochester (with the Democrat & Chronicle’s version of Bob Ryan), is an auditory nightmare. If we ever corner bin Laden in a cave, they should use tapes of it as psychological warfare.

    As a Bills fan, I wish he would just drop dead. His memories surpass his accomplishments, and he has no business on the Bills Wall of Fame.

    • TBD

      “…the Democrat & Chronicle’s version of Bob Ryan…”

      Comparing him to Bob Matthews is an insult to Ryan.


    Scam artist.


    Only 22 more days to hocket free agency.

  • JDokes

    His mere existence helped perpetuate the Piltodwn man hoax.

  • Funkhouser

    I actually like Fred. He’s an incoherent lummox from time to time but he has never pretended to be anything else. He’s also not mean spirited like his dickwad partner, DeOssie. But I have take points off for his “fundraising” gig and the fact that he’s frequently photographed wearing a fanny pack and/or jorts. I heartily remain neutral.

  • Denise

    The only time I was ever tempted to call EEI, and this was years and years ago when I still listened, was around the time of the Laci Peterson murder trial. The verdict came in, and Fred for some reason launched into a pro-life monologue. That’s fine, he’s entitled to his views, good luck to him.

    But I was so tempted to call up and ask Fred if he’d ever been pregnant. So, so tempted.

    And I haven’t even TOUCHED “All Pro Productions:.


    • teen with taut hamstrings

      Politics thread!

  • Nopointe

    Approve – picks the Pats in every game.

    On the scam-o-meter he ranks average.

  • JDG

    The man cracks me up! Can’t understand him and he cuts everybody off, but still approve.

  • Chris

    I approve, but tepidly. The fact that Fred played football at a Pro Bowl level gives him some credence that is sorely lacking from his cohorts in the ‘Connecticut School of Broadcasting’ brigade.

  • Dave F

    Skims off his charity; scalps tickets; best buds with corrupt politicians (“Hi Joe Malone”); regularly uses the word “Ricans” to describe the opponents at Sudbury sporting events; dumb as sh**.

  • b holmes

    i believe he is involved in some sort of protection racket telemarketing operation that raises money for police depts while taking a cut of the dollars raised.
    it takes a real scumbag to intimidate the elderly to donate $.

  • Bob

    big time disaprove

    easily one of the dumbest, most juvenile, immature, combative voices on the radio.

    bottom line is Fred’s a guy that wears a fur coat. his brain may have been turned to mush from too many football injuries. adds nothing to the big show except blatant homerism and lame conservative viewpoints. knows precious little about any other sport beyond the NFL.

  • Big Fat O

    He can be good when he sticks to football analysis but goes bad when he has to being out the 5th grade behavior like the fart jokes.

  • john

    I can’t believe people are actually approving this idiot. Oh wait, that’s painting idiots in a bad light. Smerlas is the WORST! He is what personifies Boston sports talk – loud, obnoxious, lacking intelligence, can’t use facts to back up their point, etc…

  • Pete

    He actually thinks he should be considered for a network television gig. I remember he was up for the color analyst job for the Bills’ radio games but didn’t get it. Too bad for us. I wonder how much he and DeOssie were paid to put their name on that taco stand they own in RI. He successfully befriended Ordway, so as long as the “Big O” stays..we are stuck with Fred the Christmas Donkey. DISAPPROVE.

  • The Gimp

    As a former NFL Player, he certainly has a low bar to hit in the talent catagory….and consistently fails to reach even that modest level. Little more than a ticket-scalper.

  • rrsafety

    My fetus says: APPROVE!

  • JohnnyApps

    Mild Approval.

    He’s not the most eloquent, articulate radio personality/analyst in town, but he does provide decent pre/post game analysis and his ability to use his experience from being a pro bowler in the NFL is huge. His experience playing in the NFL is basically why he’s on the air.

    I also like the fact that he isn’t the arrogant, know it all, bully, dominant personality that is DeOssie. Smerlas works well with Sheppard on the Real Post Game Show.

  • Mitch

    Disturbingly juvenile. Blatantly unethical.


  • AbeScromsbie

    Disapprove vehemently! Smerlas is the dean of dim-witted, ex-jock, media personalities (see also S. DeOssie, S. Zolak, et al). He’s a mustachioed simpleton who offers very little to the local sports scene. As someone who claims to be a font of football knowledge, he continuously serves up softball questions to Belichick during Patriots Monday on ‘eei.

    “Hey coach, seems like you played a lot of two-gap and different schemes? Did you? That was awesome.”

  • Rock

    He’s funny and doesn’t take himself too seriously. The anti-DeOssie. Big APPROVE.

  • Tony

    I’m neutral on Fred.

    When he wants to really talk football strategy, X’s and O’s, etc., he can make some very valid points because he did play the game at the highest level for many years.

    As a nervous Pats’ fan who sweats every upcoming game, no matter how feeble the upcoming opponent appears to be, Fred picking them to win every single week annoys the hell out of me.

    I don’t know anything about his alleged charity scamming, but his constant flakking for his tailgating business and his restaurant gets beyond irritating at times.

    Overall, I’d say Fred provided harmless comic relief with some pretty good “insider” football analysis mixed in.

    Can’t approve, but can’t really disapprove either.

  • CISW

    True story:

    My wife’s friend managed a bank. One day, a man dressed in camoflage and carrying a rifle walked into the lobby. Security and police were summoned to the scene. The camoflaged rifle carrier was perplexed and dumbfounded when he was approached by security/police – as he explained that his intentions were not to cause a problem or rob the bank (he just came back from hunting) but to simply make a routine bank transaction.

    That man: Fred Smerlas.

    I think what virtually everyone else has already said accurately describes this moron.

  • 02062


    His “company” has called my home every weekday for the past 3 weeks and not left a message.

    A bigger shakedown artist than the Spawn of Lynnfield.

    Maybe he can open up a high profile steakhouse in Waltham like his pal Joe Malone did with Coach Cal? I think C.K. Nuttings lasted a year..

    It brings a smile to my face everytime Shannon Sharpe or some other ex-nfl player turned into sub-par analyst is keeping Fred and Steve off of network t.v.

    I loathe him.

    However, it’s ridicolous that the Globe did not recognize him as one of the 100 greatest athletes to come out of Massachusetts.

    • Who?

      Who is the “Spawn of Lynnfield?”

  • EMan

    Next to Larry Johnson, the worst big show co-host. I respect his football knowledge, but he ruins every show that he’s on with his constant interruptions.

  • fred derf

    As a conservative myself I resent this guy portraying himself as a conservative. He gives us all a bad name with his shady “charity” endeavors. Freddie, do us all a favor and jump to the liberal side. I don’t want to be associated with a scam artist who rips people off in the name of fire and police protection. It is especially appalling when this ignoramus and the acting school drop-out,Fat-O lecture us we don’t understand their high level marketing. A couple of flim flam thieves that should be in jail.

  • media-tor

    Anyone remember EEI’s short-lived Saturday morning show “Ted and Fred”? When Ted could keep him strictly talking football, he knows some stuff and I would heartily approve. However with Sarandis long gone and hard to find, ol’ Smerlas has been given free reign to say anything he wants on any topic with Messrs Ordway and Shepherd, and I can’t approve of that whatsoever. Frankly, I don’t think most of us want to hear his thoughts on politics, capital punishment, abortion, etc.

    He’s a former football player, he should stick to what he knows, period.

    • Chris

      Where did Ted ‘WOW!!!’ Sarandis end up, anyway? Is he still in sports media but in another market, or did he move in a whole different direction?

  • Lance

    Mild disapprove. It seems like he’s respected by Belichick and asks great questions when BB is on. Smerlas also gives good insight to being an NFL lineman. But he’s a on trick pony.

    But he’s awful, truly awful, when he’s away from that element. Talks incessantly about his steak house and always reminds people of his politics. I turn him off if it isn’t Monday during football season.

  • Beaker

    Frequently unintelligible, which is good for radio. Homo erectus with jewelry.

  • Paul

    Approved based on his days on ‘Ted & Fred’ which I enjoyed listening to. I no longer listen to WEEI so can’t discount his performance there. Similarly, Steve Buckley used to be good on ‘the hang’ but I don’t care for him now. Almost all these fellows start to get inflated egos over time.

  • Wyatt

    I can’t stand him on the Monday PM interviews with the Coach. Long rambling sentences and you can feel BB wondering “is there a question in there?” Incoherent and interruptive.


  • green33

    he’s a buffoon who thinks that he’s funnier if he’s louder and more obnoxious, an attitude cultivated by that travesty of a radio “show” he’s on in the afternoons during football season.


  • LJ Sandwich

    I think it’s really sad when after a successful NFL career, the best that you can come up with is a ticket scalping scam held under a tent, fraudelent charity endeavors, an overpriced horsemeat joint in Rhode Island, and mumbling appearances on local radio and TV. His mink coat is the gayest thing I’ve seen since Liberace’s wardrobe. Tough guy buddy act with scumbag DeOssie is disgusting. Love of cigars with men friends is also bizarre. Think’s he’s the funniest man alive. Just a completely useless meathead.


  • George

    Most of the time I like hearing Fred analysis of Pats games. I agree with many others who say that in disposition and character he’s the opposite of DeOssie. I know him to be a decent and good-natured guy in person, but I admit I’m troubled by the aforementioned so called “protection” scams.

    He needs to mature a bit and learn to stay within himself – like Oil Can Boyd. The worst of Fred is his tendency to interrupt guests and other people who are contributing to the show. But I will listen to Fred when he’s talking football and Felger is in commercial break.

    mild approve.

  • Angry Old Bastard

    APPROVE!….as has been mentioned several times, he doesn’t take himself too seriously, that gets him BIG POINTS from me….. 99% of the Boston Sports Media think they are the, “Keepers of the Flame”…Telling me who to boo, who NOT to Boo….Teling me what to wear, “NO SPORTS JERSEYS if you’re over 12 years old, YOU LOSER!”…Telling me what sports are “important” Hockey?…HOCKEY?!, WE DON”T TALK NO STINKING HOCKEY!”……Smerlas is just a big old harmless Ox, and he can actually be quite humorous (although most of the time it’s unintentional)…..APPROVE!!

  • hank_bullough

    I disagree with those who have praised his football analysis. How can someone who played the game so well for so long have so little to offer? His analysis consists of “two gap” and “cover two”.

  • Poz51

    I used to like Smerlas when I was a lad… the whole “Bermuda Triangle” thing with Shane Nelson and Jim Haslett. Even had the poster over my bed. But lately the guy has shown his true colors, and revealed the “Mass-hole” that he really is.

    F*&k Fred Smerlas, the Patriots, and the Red Sox.

  • MikeJ

    In his book “I Never Played the Game” circa 1984, the late Howard Cosell described former pro athletes in the media as “Jock-ocracy.” Cosell was upset that stupid ex-jocks were taking jobs away from more qualified college graduates. This basically sums up Fred’s existence on talk radio.

    • Angry Old Bastard

      …you mean “more qualified’ people like, Craig Mustard, Larry Johnson, Butch Stearns, Steve Burton, Craig Dickerson etc..etc..?????…yeah, those are some real “qualified” people there……

      • Chris

        Hear, hear ‘Angry!’ These ‘Connecticut School of Broadcasting’ frauds irritate us to no end. The names that you listed rank highest for ‘Disapprove’ votes thus far. The correlation is iron-clad and irrefutable.

  • pete

    A typical football idiot. Which, of course, means he’ll probably land a job some day at ESPN, which only seems to hire ex-NFL meatheads for any position these days (Mike Golic, Mark Schlereth, Cris Carter, Sean Salisbury, etc., etc.)

  • Rock

    Yeah, Freddie has faults and they’re easily identifiable but, my God: Johnson, Mustard, DeOssie, Burton, Mazz, Dickerson, Tanguay, Gresh……Context people, context! He’s funny, he’s a homer, he’s animated…..he isn’t all that bad, inspite of his limitations.

  • Joe

    disapprove. he challenges a few callers each day to come down to the station so he can kick their ass. that’s his only comeback to people who disagree with or make fun of him. Smerlas is a tool.

    • Angry Old Bastard

      I’m AMAZED at these people who actually think Smerlas and DeOssie are SERIOUS with their “tough guy” routine. Get a clue, THEY ARE KIDDING AROUND…..jeeze…

      • Bob

        was Fred kidding around when he physically assaulted the guy who sings the X-mas donkey song at the whiney awards? I don’t think Smerlas or Deossie are smart enough to fake their tough guy personas.

  • Classless Concepts


    Main reason: any show he’s on, he talks over EVERYONE and makes juvenile, not funny remarks while someone is trying to make a cognizant point. I wouldn’t touch his steak with a 10 foot clown pole.

  • Davey

    Unlike the cowardly posters here, Fred actually spilled blood on a football field … borderline Hall of Famer, who deserves respect … If you call 911 and nobody shows up, you’ll realize the power and influence this man has (hint: answer the phone when his charity calls) … Clearly has some brain damage due to 20 years in the trenches but still manages well … the fur coat brings back memories of Joe Namath in the 60s … A refreshing conservative viewpoint in a communist state … Played with heart and guts — and no steroids.

    I approve!

  • Steve From Yellowstone

    The exact opposite of someone like Massaroti or Felger who hates the sports teams, hates the fans and have such an arrogant attitude, Fred always comes off as very friendly, one who likes the local teams, and someone whose just another guy like the rest of us. Even if he does come off as rather dumb at times a big APPROVE from me.

  • Scribo

    Fat Fred was a very good player, but he is a turncoat of a person. He needs to be taken off the air for good, especially in Western New York.

  • Scott

    Borderline Hall of Famer is maybe the funniest comment I’ve read yet.

    • Davey

      Fred was a five-time All Pro and, frankly, carried Bruce Smith. Plus, no ‘roids.

    • SO621

      Not borderline, he IS a Hall of Fame caliber player, he was on the ballot in 2008, and is considered by NFL insiders to be the best NT that ever played the game. Before you laugh at his consideration go back and watch his film, the man was a beast. He should be in the HOF.

  • Siggy

    Hank Bullough, you forgot ‘eight in the box.’

  • Scott

    Such was the impact of Fred’s NFL career that he went on carrying Smith even after he left the team.

    Related follow up –

    How was it that Fred’s teams always went on to unprecedented success AFTER he left the team?

  • Scott

    By the way, I wouldn’t be so sure about the no roids – carrying around the tools of that trade is the only legitimate excuse for wearing that gay fannypak, or in Fred’s case, Guntpak.

  • arquimedez pozo

    Fred S …The Missing Link !

  • MarkB

    WEEI uses Fred as a clown – and he fits the job perfectly. When he does TV he should wear a Bozo nose. Remember, he’s not on a sports show – he’s on an entertainment show.

  • Bob

    Damn…there it is!!!! I thought someone swiped the last Suzy Q out of my snack drawer and all along it was under Fred’s nose.


    There are some former athletes who are actaully pretty entertaining on the radio, Fred’s not one of them! I’m sure he knows his football but his constant interrupting and talking over EVERYONE makes it very difficult to listen to ‘EEI when he’s on. It’s like one giant “I can shout and talk over people better than you can” match.

  • SO621

    I approve. Fred Smerlas is a charater, and the way he is portrayed on WEEI is an act of sorts. He’s actually a very nice guy, and surprisingly articulate and endearing in person. I love the comic relief he provides on WEEI, he never pretends to be someone he isn’t, and, as someone already pointed out, he’s not mean spirited. His greatest moments always involve his detailed and insightful description of offensive and defensive line play. Love Fred!

  • Joe Bock


  • James

    Knows football, I’ll give him that. Other than that this guy is an absolute morron. I feel dumber after listening to him fumble over words and trying to think of important words to not sound like a four year old.

    The fact that this guy is on the radio is ridiculous. He’s your typical football jock. He’s an absolute bafoon and I would love to call in and ask him about how he was scamming old people on the telephone but A) I’d have to quit my job to stay on the line for so long and B) They’d cut me off and probably hit the dump button.