Pat McAfee had a terrific career as an NFL punter. After he retired, he quickly pivoted into stand-up comedy and a successful radio/podcasting career. And now he’s taking his next act into new places, namely, the squared circle, as McAfee dazzled in his professional wrestling debut at WWE’s NXT TakeOver: XXX.
We have always been wrestling fans here, especially when it comes to wrestling dads. Heck, we even appreciate the fact that WWE is an essential business. But when you bring in a former pro athlete for a stunt match, the result can be pretty underwhelming. Pat McAfee was not that. He dazzled in his WWE in-ring debut, even earning the praise of a handful of other wrestlers for what he pulled off.
The Pro Bowl punter even had his former NFL team pulling for him in his match.
Can’t wait to see a few of these tonight. 💥
— Indianapolis Colts (@Colts) August 22, 2020
McAfee, who has done some wrestling broadcasting, was facing rising star Adam Cole in a match as the culmination of a “feud” that started on his radio show several weeks ago. McAfee looked much better as a wrestler than most pro athletes doing the crossover thing and even hit a couple of high-flying moves. He blew away viewers with his performance.
— Triple H (@TripleH) August 23, 2020
Pat McAfee had no business having a match as good as he just did or performing to the level he just did – even the biggest skeptics would have to be fair and give him a huge amount of credit there.
Cole and McAfee was a damn entertaining watch! #NXTakeOver
— Alex McCarthy (@AlexM_talkSPORT) August 23, 2020
Are you kidding me, @PatMcAfeeShow?!?
— Field Yates (@FieldYates) August 23, 2020
Good morning beautiful people..
I woke up a bit sore.. I couldn’t fully understand why then I hopped on the Twitter
— Pat McAfee (@PatMcAfeeShow) August 23, 2020
McAfee dazzled, but still “lost” his match against Cole.
— Adam Cole (@AdamColePro) August 23, 2020
McAfee is as entertaining a broadcaster as there is currently in sports, and he’s got a long career ahead of him (in broadcasting). But for a guy living out his childhood dream, he held his own much better than most of his predecessors in the NFL/NBA to WWE crossover history, so props to the punter.