Keyshawn Johnson retires, joins ESPN


Sultan of Swat
Staff member
Keyshawn Johnson retired Wednesday, ending an NFL career in which the outspoken receiver was once one of the game's biggest threats.
He joins ESPN as a sportscaster and was to disclose his plans at a news conference in Los Angeles at USC, where he starred in college.
"The opportunity to transition from active player to broadcaster at the level of ESPN and ABC was too great to pass up," Johnson said in a statement issued by ESPN.
Last month, Johnson worked the NFL draft for ESPN, which was impressed enough to offer him a job. He was released by the Carolina Panthers days after the draft.
"When Keyshawn decided to retire from football, we jumped at the chance of adding him to our NFL roster, especially after his impressive on-air performance during the NFL draft," ESPN executive vice president Norby Williamson said. "He delivered passionate opinions and candid analysis, attributes that will make him a first-rate analyst in his new career."
Johnson, who turns 35 in July, spent 11 years in the league. Last season, he became the 16th NFL player with 800 career catches.
He visited the Tennessee Titans last week and met with coaches and watched film.
But the Titans had not made a formal offer, and team officials had been talking with Johnson about the range and money that would be involved in any deal.
Johnson was the top pick in the 1996 draft, by the New York Jets. After a good rookie season - 63 catches, eight touchdowns - for a team that went 1-15, he wrote a book: "Just Give Me The Damn Ball," which was well-received by the public if not by his teammates.
Johnson went on to stints with Tampa Bay, Dallas and Carolina, where he had 70 catches for 815 yards and four touchdowns as the No. 2 receiver behind Steve Smith.


Aw, Here It Goes!
Its a really shame during the NFL draft he was talking about how he would train and mentor Dwyane Jarrett, and he ends up replacing him. I think he'll make a decent broadcaster nothing special.


Sultan of Swat
Staff member
I believe it's ashame that he's leaving the game, I was really mad that the Panthers released him, but I think they had to choice, especially with Jarett coming in. I am sure there's a lot of teams out that could use his services, yes he's not has good has he was, but he can get you around 60 catches and 600-700 yards. Great receiver calling it quits.


Registered Member
I think he will be a good sportscaster. I liked him at the NFL draft. Keyshawn was never my fav wr but he had grown and matured as his career advanced. Overall, I viewed him as a good WR and he will be missed.


Sultan of Swat
Staff member
I would have to agree with you with the two things you said, he's going to be a great broadcaster, he knows a lot about the game, and he speaks very well. Second thing is that I agree with you that he matured a lot, when he came into the league I personally thought he was a little punk and caused trouble, but he grew up and now he's very mature which is great to see.


He was a good receiver; not as great as he'd like you to believe. He provided too much of a headache to all the teams he was with.

He'll be a terrible NFL analyst. He'll just yell, scream and make ridiculous claims like Michael Irvin. It's very predictable that ESPN would hire him.


#1 Spammer of FC
I think he has some great knowledge of the game and it will be good to have him broadcasting games now. Great career and this just goes along with some of the great things he's done.