HE WAS the winningest NFL coach of the 1990s, but when Dennis Green appeared on ESPN's SportsCenter earlier this month, he was every bit the modern beer salesman, seated before a Coors Light backdrop, wearing a Coors Light T-shirt and even interrupting his football analysis to mention the brand's new commercials, which would be premiering during the Giants-Redskins game that night. The latter move was a step too far, even for the network that gave you the Coors Light Cold Hard Facts. "It shouldn't have happened," an ESPN spokesperson says. But Green told SI he doesn't see a problem mixing ads with X's and O's. "Football and beer," he says, "go hand in hand."
For Green, who says he retired permanently from coaching after being fired by the Cardinals two years ago, selling isn't everything; it's the only thing. He has trademarked two phrases from the 2006 postgame tirade featured in his first Coors Light commercial—"They are who we thought they were" and "We let them off the hook"—and has had them emblazoned on caps that he sells on his website. He also offers a DVD, Fishing Across America with Dennis Green (he's a competitive bass angler); a CD of his jazz group, the Sunset Music Band (he plays drums); and various consulting services, from stadium financing to public relations. "CEOs," says Green, who wouldn't reveal their names or companies (citing "confidentiality"), "ask my advice on dealing with salesmen and executives." So does Green, 59, who also calls NFL games for Westwood One radio, miss the sidelines? Says he, "I haven't thought much about coaching."