Washington Redskins tight end Chris Cooley will retire from the NFL and will join the team’s radio broadcast crew.
Cooley’s hiring as a radio analyst was announced by Red Zebra Broadcasting which owns the Reskins’ flagship station in Washington (ESPN 980), per the Washington Post’s Mark Maske and Dan Steinberg.
Chuck Sapienza, the executive producer of the Redskins Radio Network said in a written statement Cooley’s addition will add a level of excitement and unpredictability to their broadcasts.
“To add a talent and fan favorite like Chris to our team will add excitement to our broadcast and a level of unpredictability for our listeners.”
As of July 16, Cooley has not actually made his retirement official, but he was not expected to return to the Redskins lineup for the 2013 NFL season, per the Associated Press via the Washington Times.
The 31-year-old Cooley was let go of by the Redskins during 2012 training camp. However, he was re-signed by the team following an injury to starting tight end Fred Davis.
NFL.com’s Gregg Rosenthal states Cooley was one of the more consistent tight ends of his era, even writing he was the Redskins’ most reliable player on offense when they struggled to move the ball. Rosenthal adds Cooley stood out for his ability to use the Internet to his advantage, gaining a loyal fanbase by interacting with fans and with no pretensions on his part.
He played all of his nine NFL seasons with the Reskins and was named to two Pro Bowl appearances along the way. For his NFL career which kicked off in 2004, he wound up with 4,711 yards on 429 receptions, 33 touchdowns and 11 fumbles, per ESPN stats.