Retired Arizona Cardinal J.J. Watt speaks with the press during the 19th annual Pat's Run outside Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe on April 15, 2023. Retired Arizona Cardinal J.J. Watt speaks with the press during the 19th annual Pat’s Run outside Sun Devil Stadium. Credit: USA TODAY

J.J. Watt is about to make the transition that so many former NFL players before him have made, moving from the playing field to the broadcasting studio.

It also sounds like he’s learning a lesson many of them learned as well. One, that it’s much harder than it seems, and two, that they know more than you think.

“I always said early in my career I didn’t want to be an analyst,” Watt told the Houston Chronicle’s Greg Rajan. “I said, ‘Those guys don’t know what they’re talking about.’ They always rip on players when they don’t know their assignments. They always talk bad about us. I said, ‘I don’t want to do that.’ But now, leaving the game, I realize how much I love it and how much I can’t stand to not be around it. This is the perfect opportunity.”

After retiring in December, Watt joined CBS in June and will have a seat on The NFL Today studio set alongside host James Brown and fellow analysts Simms, Cowher, Boomer Esiason, and Nate Burleson.

While NBC was an early favorite to land the former Arizona Cardinals and Houston Texans star, Watt’s desire to work a part-time media role led him to CBS.

Watt has presumably been getting a crash course in media work this summer and we’d imagine that he’ll have a whole new perspective on the role of the NFL analyst in a few weeks.

[Houston Chronicle]

About Sean Keeley

Along with writing for Awful Announcing and The Comeback, Sean is the Editorial Strategy Director for Comeback Media. Previously, he created the Syracuse blog Troy Nunes Is An Absolute Magician and wrote 'How To Grow An Orange: The Right Way to Brainwash Your Child Into Rooting for Syracuse.' He has also written non-Syracuse-related things for SB Nation, Curbed, and other outlets. He currently lives in Seattle where he is complaining about bagels. Send tips/comments/complaints to