No stranger to controversy, Fox Sports hot-take artist Skip Bayless went viral for all the wrong reasons Thursday, questioning Dak Prescott’s toughness for opening up about his mental health following the death of his brother, who committed suicide in April.
“The quarterback of an NFL team is the ultimate leadership position in sports,” Bayless explained to cohost Shannon Sharpe on Thursday’s episode of Undisputed on FS1. “You’re commanding a lot of young men and some older men and they’re all looking at you to be their CEO, to be in charge of the football team. I don’t have sympathy for him going public with ‘I got depressed.’”
Bayless’ dangerously out-of-touch musings—on World Suicide Prevention Day, no less—were rightfully panned with many calling for the longtime talking head to be reprimanded by his employer (hence the trending Twitter hashtag #SkipJobless). Fox finally issued a response Thursday night, chastising Bayless for a sentiment the company characterized as “insensitive.” In dressing down Bayless for his inexplicably callous remarks, Fox also commended Prescott for the “tremendous courage” he showed in addressing his battle with depression.
It doesn’t sound like Bayless will be taken off the airwaves, though network execs made sure to convey the “significance” of his hurtful comments. Unfazed by the PR nightmare he ignited, Bayless kept busy on social media Thursday night, though none of his tweets were about Dak as the former sports columnist instead called attention to the Rockets’ listless performance against the Lakers in Game 4 of the Western Conference semifinals.
Playing on the franchise tag after failing to reach a long-term deal with Dallas this offseason, Prescott will make his season debut for the Cowboys Sunday night against the Rams at newly-opened SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles.