Pat McAfee, who simply continues to get it in a way few others have ever gotten it, has been teasing a new endeavor over the past few weeks, sparking many theories from the McAfee Hive and corkboard enthusiasts. The payoff came this morning when the WWE announced that the former punter and current multimedia mogul will be joining the Friday Night SmackDown team as an analyst.
And he starts right away.
“For as long as I can remember WWE has been a company that I have admired, both for its incredible staying power of creating riveting entertainment and for its ability to connect people all over the globe,” said McAfee. “I’ve been fortunate to try a lot of cool professions but working for WWE was the one I looked forward to most. I am incredibly honored and grateful for the chance to give back to the business that has given me and many others so much and having the opportunity to sit at the same table that legends have graced is truly a dream come true. Now let’s go get it.”
Here's the thing about this news. It could have been a lot of things! Just yesterday we were speculating internally who Amazon might be reaching out to in order to fill their Thursday Night Football booth. McAfee's name was the first that came to the table because the upside is plainly obvious. The question wasn't is he the right guy for this role, it was would he really want to do it or are there bigger and better things that would a better, more appealing fit.
McAfee is piecemealing together a diversified and growing portfolio. He's making smart decisions that put him front-of-mind for different audiences, and speaking a language that resonates with all of them. He's been retired for less than five years, meaning this is still the beginning of the journey.