QB Robert Griffin III Puts NFL Career on Hold for College and Pro Football Analyst Gig at ESPN
The former Heisman Trophy winner backed up Lamar Jackson on the Baltimore Ravens last season
In a move that may put an end to his NFL career, RGIII is joining the four-letter network.
Quarterback Robert Griffin III, who spent last season backing up Lamar Jackson on the Baltimore Ravens, is taking a job at ESPN as a college football and NFL analyst. Given a multi-year deal by The Worldwide Leader, the Heisman Trophy winner and former Pro Bowler will be in the booth for a weekly college football game and will also contribute to ESPN’s studio coverage.
Prior to signing with ESPN, the 31-year-old “excelled” in his audition and left network executives “blown away” after one of “the top tryouts” they had ever viewed, according to The New York Post.
“Congratulations to my friend RGIII on taking a job with ESPN,” longtime NFL writer Gary Myers wrote on Twitter. “I know how much the fire burns inside him to still play and he is good enough to deserve that chance. He’s going to be great on TV.”
Per Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network, Griffin does still want to play in the NFL and has an out in his contract if an opportunity to get back into the league arises. But unless the Indianapolis Colts come calling as they search for a replacement for Carson Wentz, Griffin will start this season as a broadcaster.
“I think it’s a fun thing for me to be able to do a little bit of studio and call games. It’s a perfect situation,” Griffin told the Associated Press. “I am continuing to work out, stay ready and prepare for everything that could be coming in the future. ESPN has been great through this whole process and understanding that I still want to play. I still love the game. If that opportunity doesn’t come, I’ll be giving everything I have to ESPN and this process.”
Selected No. 2 overall in the NFL Draft out of Baylor by the Washington Football Team in 2012, Griffin had a tremendous freshman season in the NFL and threw for 3,200 yards and 20 touchdowns with 815 yards and seven touchdowns on the ground on his way to being named NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year. A 2013 Pro Bowl selection, Griffin’s career was doomed by injury and he spent the majority of his eight seasons in the NFL serving in a backup role.
Now at ESPN, he has the chance to have the spotlight all to himself once again, albeit on Saturdays instead of Sundays.
“Robert has been on our radar for a while and we expect him to make an immediate impact on our college and NFL coverage,” said ESPN senior VP of production Lee Fitting. “His knowledge of the game, his fresh-off-the-field insights and his charisma make him uniquely positioned to move into this new role, and we are particularly excited to have him call a big college game every week.”
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