Tony Gonzalez’s retirement from the Atlanta Falcons and the NFL, in essence, cost Shannon Sharpe and Dan Marino their jobs as studio analysts on CBS’ The NFL Today pregame show.
The network confirmed that Gonzalez will be added to the team and Sharpe, the outspoken former tight end, and Marino, the Hall of Fame quarterback, would not return — a shakeup few saw coming.
“Having just stepped off the playing field, Tony brings a fresh and insightful perspective,” CBS Sports chairman Sean McManus said. “As a future Hall of Famer, we are excited for him to share his knowledge, experiences and opinions with our viewers. Tony was one of the most respected and hardworking players in the NFL and a tremendous teammate.
“While we welcome Tony, we want to acknowledge Dan Marino and Shannon Sharpe who have contributed greatly to the success of The NFL Today for more than a decade,” McManus said. “Dan and Shannon are true Hall of Famers on the field and in front of the camera. As they pursue other professional opportunities, we thank them for their hard work and dedication and wish them nothing but the best.”
Sharpe, who had been with the network since 2004, was an outspoken voice who at times took bold stands or communicated in a direct fashion, making him a controversial figure at times. One of the all-time great quarterbacks, Marino had been with CBS since 2002. He was often bland and nondescript in style.
Gonzalez, meanwhile, with his chiseled jaw and keen communication skills, seems a natural for television. He will, however, be under major scrutiny for being at the heart of this major shakeup.