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The Late Show with Stephen Colbert debuted this week, and after months of speculation as to what its new look and feel would be like, no one — absolutely no one — predicted how many NFL legends would be employed in its production.


Thursday night’s taping of the show produced a parade of former football greats during Colbert’s monologue: Joe Theismann, operating camera two, had difficulty keeping the frame centered on the host; Franco Harris spiked a tambourine dropped from the balcony; Richard Dent prepared a smallish suit for Colbert to wear the following night; Jim Brown put in time as an intimidating audience warm-up man; and lastly, Bill Cowher applied make up to Colbert and words of encouragement.

Bill Cowher and the gang have several kind words for Stephen in the green room. #LSSC

A video posted by Late Show with Stephen Colbert (@colbertlateshow) on

Despite their best efforts, none of the Hall of Famers were with the show a day later.