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

Either Boomer Esiason is very generous, or J.J. Watt is about to get hit with a hefty bill as some sort of rookie hazing bit on The NFL Today.

In his first year of retirement, Watt has joined CBS to work as a studio analyst on The NFL Today, which Esiason has been a part of since 2002. As Watt gets set for his first appearance on the show this Sunday, he called into Esiason’s WFAN morning show with co-host Gregg Giannotti. And during their chat, Esiason revealed one of Watt’s biggest concerns about his new gig, a hefty watch bill.

Esiason is friends with the president of Breitling, a watch company that has contributed to the former quarterback’s Cystic Fibrosis foundation, and every year they gift wristwatches to The NFL Today cast on CBS.

“So I send out the link to these guys on my group to pick your watch this year. And J.J. thought it was a scam,” Esiason said. “He thought it was like a rookie scam.”

“100 percent,” Watt admitted. “I am still convinced that somehow I am going to get a bill for a $15,000 watch and then also, I’m gonna get a bill for Boomer’s $15,000 watch and Bill Cowher’s $15,000 watch.”

The good news for Watt is that he earned nearly $130 million on the football field, which is significantly more than anyone else on The NFL Today set at CBS. And that doesn’t even factor his endorsement deals. We’re not trying to spend another person’s money, but if anyone at The NFL Today can afford a few $15,000 watches, it’s Watt.

Now that Watt has his Breitling watch, he’s just about ready for his NFL Today debut, although he has does have some things to clean up before getting in front of the camera. Apparently, he was censored during his WFAN appearance, but it was quickly dumped by the radio station and CBS Sports Network. Using context clues, it seems like he said some form of “bs-ing” which won’t necessarily fly on CBS.

“It’s called ratings,” Watt jokingly said after Esiason advised him against “cussing” on CBS Sunday. The NFL Today set already felt pretty full with Boomer, Bill Cowher, James Brown, Nate Burleson, and Phil Simms, but if Watt is going to be unfiltered, there might be room for one more personality.


About Brandon Contes

Brandon Contes is a staff writer for Awful Announcing and The Comeback. He previously helped carve the sports vertical for Mediaite and spent more than three years with Barrett Sports Media. Send tips/comments/complaints to