One of the perks of being part of a popular professional sport like the NFL is that it’s a foot in the door for young athletes who happen to enjoy other high-profile activities.
NFL players get into all kinds of strange things in the offseason. Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Hines Ward is perhaps one of the better-known examples of this: during the offseason lockout, he did a stint on Dancing With the Stars.
Knowing that, it’s not too far outside the realm of possibility to believe that an NFL player could probably get a bit role in his favorite sitcom with a little bit of effort.
The bigger problem would be figuring out which players are best suited to which sitcoms. Thankfully, for select players that legwork has all been done for them! Keep clicking as we introduce dream sitcom matchups for 10 NFL players.
Ever since entering the NFL, Matthew Stafford has made a name for himself as a promising player—if he could get over his injury problems.
Stafford has spent more time off-field during his short career than he has spent on it. It’s not just one nagging injury, either; he has suffered from a variety of season-ending ailments.
That would make Stafford just about perfect for a role as a patient on Scrubs or House.
Technically Scrubs falls closer to the sitcom category, although Stafford might be better off hoping for a part in House since that’s still in production.
Kicker John Kasay was all set to retire after he wrapped up the 2010 season with the Carolina Panthers, but it turns out that his time hasn’t quite come yet.
Despite being 42 years old, Kasay was still a hot commodity in the NFL. He now plays for the New Orleans Saints.
Given Kasay’s age, he would have been perfect for a walk-on in That ‘70s Show.
He would have been the right age group at the time, and although his time in the NFL started just over a decade later the show had a precedent of bringing in contemporary famous personalities.
It’s too bad that his best-fit show officially ended years ago.
Jarius Wynn was a part of the 2010 Super Bowl-winning Green Bay Packers squad, but taking the field for the big game may not actually be the most important moment of that 24-hour period.
Hours before the Super Bowl, Wynn’s wife gave birth to the couple’s second child. Wynn would go on to suit up and contribute to his team’s eventual Super Bowl victory.
Many NFL players are fathers, but there are much fewer who generate that type of media byline. That gives Wynn a unique in if he wants to make an appearance on Raising Hope.
Jeremy Shockey used to be known as a bit of a loose cannon, though word on the street is that he has calmed down a bit recently.
Now that he’s cooled it a little bit, he would be a good fit with the cast of Modern Family.
There has always been something of an entertainer about him even though it has come out in a negative, bad boy type of way.
That type of attitude would make him a good “past friend” of Jay Pritchett who plays a former football player.
If we’re being honest, Chad Ochocinco has the type of made-for-TV personality that would make him a hit on any sort of sitcom that he wanted to try his hand at.
That being said, The Office would be an excellent fit for him.
The Office features exactly the type of humor that Ochocinco seems to enjoy. He would enjoy himself during his obligatory “confessional” time and would be a good foible to many of the regular characters.
Jamaal Charles is on injured reserve for the remainder of the year, which means that he has more time than his peers on this list to pursue his television debut.
Charles would be a good fit for Two and a Half Men. The show is reeling a bit with the loss of Charlie Sheen, so they could use some additional star power on their side.
Given how outgoing and friendly Charles is via his Twitter persona, it sounds like he could gel well with the current show cast.
Rob Gronkowski has been in the tabloids this year thanks to his playboy persona—right down to pictures with a porn star floating around the Internet. He clearly likes the spotlight, so television would be a natural path for him.
Since Gronkowski knows how to play the field and has a good time with it, so why not give him a shot on How I Met Your Mother?
There are plenty of party scenes to throw a well-known extra into, and he’s currently in about the right age group to fit right in with the cast.
Maybe the root of Ndamukong Suh’s attitude problem is that he has never been confronted with the consequences of wronging another person.
Okay, who are we kidding? He’s had plenty of consequences and he keeps doing his thing anyway.
His bad-boy attitude would make him great for a role on My Name is Earl. He would be an excellent foible to the main character’s desire to atone for his past.
Besides, he’s clearly comfortable enough in front of the camera to act, so he’s got a head start over the NFL players who can’t string two sentences together when the film is rolling.
Maybe he’d even feel like doing some atoning of his own after the shooting.
…Nah. That part is probably a bit too far-fetched.
Back in September, Jerome Simpson of the Cincinnati Bengals had 2.5 pounds of marijuana shipped to his house. A federal raid turned up another six pounds of pot already on the premises.
That (and the fact that he still hasn’t been arrested by the police or disciplined by the NFL) would make Simpson a prime candidate for a stint on Weeds when it starts filming for the next season.
He could be one of the drug distributors that Nancy Botwin deals with. Heck, he’d hardly have to even act!
Unlike many of his NFL contemporaries, Aaron Rodgers didn’t start his college career at a four-year school. Instead, he spent his first college year playing for Butte Community College.
Since he has experience with that type of atmosphere, a show like Community would suit Rodgers just fine if he wanted to take a stab at acting.
Sure the characterizations are completely overblown, but Rodgers has proved that he can go with the flow and have a good time. It would be a match made in heaven.
This one was a no-brainer—pardon the pun.
Ryan Fitzpatrick is widely regarded as one of the smartest NFL players currently in the league. What better television show to act in than The Big Bang Theory?
Fitzpatrick could join Sheldon, Leonard and the others in one of their crazy, geeky adventures.
Who knows, he might find that nerding out on television is more appealing to him than throwing the pigskin with a bunch of jocks.