I have been humming the theme song of the 1980s family comedy Webster – starring former NFL star Alex Karras – literally nonstop during the two weeks since I posted a quick item about the show on PopWatch. So imagine my delight when I saw a report today that another ex-football player, Michael Strahan, late of the New York Giants, has scored a sitcom pilot for Fox. The show, tentatively titled Brothers, will feature Strahan as a retired NFL star who returns home to reconnect with his family, including Daryl “Chill” Mitchell.
Now, I know this seems kinda weird on first thought – a football player in a sitcom? Really? But, I mean, if Alex Karras could do it, why can’t Strahan? Via his work on the Fox NFL Sunday telecasts, his gigs hosting Pros vs. Joes and Backyard Stadiums, his guest stint on Chuck, and his appearances on programs like ESPN’s brilliant Pardon the Interruption, Strahan has proven himself to be as charming as one-time athletes come. He’s certainly on par with his former teammate Tiki Barber in the personality department, not to mention cuddly lugs like Warren Sapp, Charles Barkley, and my former schoolmate Dhani Jones (whose new Travel Channel show premieres tonight!). I know they used to try in vain to turn athletes into TV/movie stars all the time, but, to me, this crop is far superior to Bruce Jenner, Bob Uecker, and company. Then again, I dunno, maybe I’m biased. I’m not a Giants fan in the slightest…but, like Strahan, I do have a gap in between my two front teeth!
Either way, are you with me? Think Strahan can score a sitcom touchdown? And what other football players and athletes are ripe for a transition to TV and the movies?