1. Sports media prediction: The next NFL player who will make a successful transition from the field to television will be Julian Edelman. “Successful” is an understatement—I expect Edelman to become a breakout sports media star.
The newly retired Patriot announced Wednesday he's joining the cast of Inside the NFL for the 2021 season. Edelman’s decision to start his media career on a smaller show is a smart move. I don’t know if the former receiver wants to eventually call games or work on a pregame show, but going directly from the field to a big role on TV usually doesn’t work for anyone not named Tony Romo.
So, this is a perfect place for Edelman to get his feet wet and learn TV. I actually think CBS, which owns Inside the NFL, should have Edelman replace Kyle Long, who came out of retirement a few weeks ago to sign with the Chiefs, on CBS Sports Network’s That Other Pregame Show, but I don’t get paid to make those decisions.
Why am I so high on Edelman as a sports media personality? Three reasons.
One, he has shown to have a great sense of humor. I pointed this out last week in Traina Thoughts, recalling the excellent way Edelman told a story about the night he saw Bill Belichick getting out of a hot tub naked at the Patriots' facility. He also showed off his sense of humor on this week’s Pardon My Take by busting out his impressions of Tom Brady and Gronk.
Two, he is creative. Edelman’s YouTube page is filled with amusing videos where he does everything from making smoothies to hosting a hamburger-themed talk show to making a mock episode of Cops.
Three, he made those two traits clear while playing for the Patriots, which isn’t easy to do since New England doesn’t like its players to show too much personality.
With Edelman now free to completely be himself, we imagine we’ll see even more of his unique personality.
NFL media needs more people who aren’t X’s and O’s analysts or player evaluators talking about “high motors.”
All sports media needs more fun. That’s something Edelman will provide.
2. A brand new SI Media Podcast dropped this morning, and it features an interview with the new play-by-play man for Monday Night Raw, Adnan Virk.
The conversation covers everything from how Virk got the WWE gig, meeting Vince McMahon, his wrestling fandom and being thrown right into the wrestling fire to Virk's dismissal from ESPN, whether he felt the firing was fair, his love of movies, the three best films of the past year and much more.
3. The tweet from Sportico's Anthony Crupi made me happy because there's nothing I want more than for DirecTV's exclusive hold on NFL Sunday Ticket to be over. If he's throwing out the possibility NBC/Peacock could pick it up, there has to be something there. However, the tweet also made me sad because we still have to get through two more seasons before DirecTV's exclusivity with Sunday Ticket is up.
4. The Knicks have been a complete embarrassment for 20 years, so with the franchise finally turning things around this season, New York fans are ready to explode. This was the scene outside Madison Square Garden on Wednesday night after the Knicks beat the Hawks for their eighth win in a row.
5. Here's a crazy stat for my fellow degenerates out there.
6. When you lose 16–4, as the Mets did Wednesday night, things are going to be ugly. But this is still a hilarious stretch of bad defense that took place over two innings against the Cubs.
7. RANDOM VIDEO OF THE DAY: I said this on Twitter on Wednesday night and I'll say it again: The only man who can help the New York Yankees right now is George Costanza.
Be sure to catch up on past editions of Traina Thoughts and check out the Sports Illustrated Media Podcast hosted by Jimmy Traina on Apple, Spotify or Stitcher. You can also follow Jimmy on Twitter and Instagram.