One NFL insider voice that ESPN viewers will not be listening to as the new season kicks off is Chris Mortensen as the football analyst has announced his retirement from the network.
Mortensen had quietly quit the sports network earlier this year and ahead of the start of the NFL season has made it public to all of his fans.
“Excited about another season but it’s time to reveal after my 33rd NFL draft in April, I made a decision to step away from ESPN and focus on my health, family and faith,” he shared on X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter.
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Luckily for fans who have been following his career for 33 years, he’s still going to be giving his hot takes on the NFL.
“The gratitude and humility is overwhelming. It’s not a classic retirement. I’ll still be here talking ball. It’s just time. God Bless you all,” he added.
Following his announcement, his colleagues flooded the replies with words dedicated to his honor.
Adam Schefter shared a photo of himself and Mortensen on the latter’s last appearance on ESPN.
“It never will be the same without him by my side, and all those times will be remembered with remarkable fondness. Working next to Mort was the honor of a lifetime,” Schefter added.
In a separate post, Schefter said, “There has been no greater honor than to work with, and learn from, a man on ESPN’s Mount Rushmore. He has been an exemplary husband, father, friend and co-worker. He paved the way in this industry. He is a legend. Thank you for all you did for ESPN and so many, Mort. Love you.”
ESPN NBA insider Adrian Wojnarowski wrote, “Best of the best. What an honor it’s been to spend time with Mort and learn from him. A true titan in this industry and an inspiration in every aspect of his remarkable life and career.”
Peter King from NBC Sports shared, “One of the all-time greats in our business … and I know it’s a cliche, but Mort’s a better person. He’s left an inspirational trail for so many to follow.”
ESPN anchor Mike Greenberg quoted Mort’s X post and added, “When they tell you someone is great at their job but an even better human being, Mort is the example they should use. All my best wishes and endless respect to one of the kindest and most professional gentlemen I’ve ever known.”
“Love u brother!” Damien Woody said.
ESPN Senior Writer Don Van Natta Jr. posted, “One of the giants. A kick-ass but humble reporter. Always had time to help lift up and support his colleagues, including me. All the best to you, Mort, and the family, always.”
Rece Davis said, “All the best my friend. You elevated the profession, the craft and more important-made everyone around you better. On and off camera.”
Louis Riddick replied, “Love and respect Mort. You are THE best.”
ESPN reporter Michele Steele replied to Mort’s post, “A class act – a work horse – and a selfless colleague. All the best on the next chapter and many, many congratulations on this one.”
ESPN reporter Jenna Laine added, “Congrats on an incredible run, Mort. Epitome of professionalism and class, and a true inspiration. Thank you for raising the bar so high for all of us.”
ESPN analyst Stephania Bell also had some words for Mort saying, “You are an inspiration, Mort. Thank you for all the kindness and wisdom you have shared with me ever since I set foot on this campus. I’m going to miss seeing you…but I couldn’t be happier for you and your family. You have more than earned this time. ENJOY.”
Jorge Sedano weighed in and said, “Mort, you’re an absolute legend. Truly a trailblazer and always incredibly kind/helpful to everyone you worked with. Congrats and thank you for being such a great colleague.”
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