Sports Journalists Have a Weird Infatuation With Male Athletes' Legs

Saquon Barkley, Adrian Amos
Saquon Barkley has nice legs. | Al Bello/Getty Images

In the show Entourage, Johnny Drama's obsession with his calves went so far that he once stalked a man at a party to analyze whether said man's calves were implants or not.

At this point, it feels like a sports media member might do the same thing in an effort to get the next big story.

What used to be something of a joke now feels like a genuine desire to be the media member who reveals a male athlete's sizable stems. To the best of my knowledge, it started with Saquon Barkley back in 2018 when he was spotted playing golf with shorts on. Of course, most running backs have massive legs, but in fairness to Barkley, his are a little more defined.

Phil Mickelson was the next leg target. Unlike Barkley, the unveil that Mickelson has big calves was a little more surprising because A) we rarely see professional golfer's legs because they play in pants and B) Phil Mickelson doesn't come across as a guy who's cut anywhere. But the first time we saw them, the internet went wild.

The obsession didn't stop, with Dan Patrick asking Mickelson to show some leg as recently as two months ago. But today, things went too far. Giants quarterback Daniel Jones told the media he put on 8-9 pounds of muscle in the offseason. The media got their first view of him in practice later that day and gushed over how much more powerful he looked. Where was the first place many looked? The legs of course.

There are plenty of other examples of media members zoning in on male athlete's legs. Tyreek Hill recently performed a leg exercise on social media that was picked up by most major outlets. Adrian Peterson's legs have also been covered in the past. Soccer players Cristiano Ronaldo and Sergio Ramos have both been lauded for their legs. Tennis legend Nadal has had his legs written about a few hundred times. Even little Luka Modric's legs have been described as "absolute bricks."

As journalists, our job is to point out the interesting and unusual. We do that by observing. It seems lately the eyes have been focused on the lower third of the male athlete's bodies. Thankfully this hasn't been extended in a sexist manner toward female athletes. But one does have to wonder if it's getting a little weird how much journalists care about the way a male athlete's muscles pop on their legs. Hell, I'm writing about it now, which shows it's somewhere in the back of my mind. And with that, I bid this article adieu and vow never to write about a male athlete's legs again.

Unless...