While appearing on The Stephen A. Smith Show, Shannon Sharpe recalled a time in 2022 when he nearly came to physical blows with former co-host Skip Bayless. The moment came during an episode of Undisputed when Bayless took a jab at Sharpe about "having to stop at 35" in comparison to Tom Brady, who played well into his 40s. Despite being a seventh-round pick, Sharpe became one of the best tight ends in NFL history. He won three Super Bowls before he retired. Sharpe's unamused reaction was a rare break in his demeanor on the show. He explained to Smith that he had to restrain himself from "putting his hands" on Bayless.
“Why would I be jealous of Tom Brady? I’m happy that Tom — Tom was like me, given an opportunity, he made the most of that opportunity. I think that was, in all of my TV career, I remember going home, calling my sister, I called my brother, my homeboy, everybody had told him, he raced home, he’d watch it. It took a lot. It took a lot for me not to put my hands on him, it actually did," Sharpe said. Smith, whose show First Take Sharpe has since joined, joked he was thankful Sharpe didn't resort to blows because it wouldn't have gone well for Bayless.
Sharpe Helps First Take Pummel Undisputed In The Ratings
While Sharpe never came to physical blows with Sharpe, he has helped body Undisputed in the ratings. Figures from September between First Take and Undisputed show that the Shannon Sharpe Effect is very much a thing. Viewership figures from September 12 show that First Take received 717,000 viewers. By comparison, Undisputed received 118,000 viewers on the same day.
Furthermore, figures from earlier in the month show a similar trend. Even before Sharpe debuted on First Take on September 4, the numerical evidence was already there. When Undisputed came back from its summer hiatus, it premiered to an audience of 131,000. That dropped to 78,000 viewers by the middle of Undisputed's first week back on the air.