Sports Spectrum Podcast

Hosted by former ESPN Senior Producer Jason Romano, Sports Spectrum is an interview driven podcast that features stories on the intersection of sports and faith.
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Now displaying: 2017
Dec 28, 2017

Adam LaRoche played 12 seasons in the Majors with 6 different teams, most notably the Pirates and the Nationals, where he won a Gold Glove and Silver Slugger Award in 2012. 

LaRoche abruptly retired from baseball in March 2016 after his club, the White Sox had placed a restriction on his 14-year-old son entering the team's clubhouse every day. By retiring, LaRoche walked away from a $13 million contract. 

Adam's platform has allowed him to bring to light the issue of sex slavery and human trafficking. 

Gary Haugen is the founder and CEO of International Justice Mission, who's mission is to rescue those enslaved in human trafficking, protect them from violence and bring hope and justice for the poor. 

Before founding IJM in 1997, Gary was a human rights attorney for the U.S. Department of Justice, where he focused on crimes of police misconduct.  In 1994, he served as the Director of the United Nations’ investigation in the aftermath of the Rwandan genocide. In this role, he led an international team of lawyers, criminal prosecutors, law enforcement officers, and forensics experts to gather evidence that would eventually be used to bring the perpetrators of the genocide to justice. 

Gary has been recognized by the U.S. State Department as a Trafficking in Persons “Hero” – the highest honor given by the U.S. government for anti-slavery leadership. His work to protect the poor from violence has been featured by Foreign Affairs, The New York Times, the New Yorker, The Times of India, Forbes, U.S. News and World Report, the Guardian and National Public Radio, among many other outlets.  

On this episode of the podcast, Jason Romano sits down with Gary and Adam in front of a live audience at a conference in San Antonio, Texas to talk about the real issue of human trafficking and sex slavery. 

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Dec 21, 2017

Brock Huard covers NFL and College Football for ESPN. He's also the co-host of the Brock and Salk show on 710 ESPN in Seattle and is the host of the "Above and Beyond" podcast.

Brock was selected in the 3rd round of the 1999 NFL Draft by the Seattle Seahawks out of the University of Washington. 

He played 6 seasons in the NFL, including 2 as Peyton Manning's backup in Indianapolis. 

Brock was the 1995 Gatorade High School Football Player of the Year. 

On this episode of the podcast, Brock and Jason talk about Brock's journey to faith in Christ, being authentic as an analyst, why he feels it's a necessity to meet weekly in a discipleship group, and balancing family with the rigors of a broadcast schedule that has him traveling across the country. 

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Dec 18, 2017

Team USA's Gigi Marvin is a two-time silver medalist at the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia and 2010 Olympic Winter Games in Vancouver, B.C.

Born into a hockey family, Gigi takes after her Dad Mike, her brother Aaron, all who played college hockey and her grandpa Cal, who was inducted into the United States Hockey Hall of Fame. 

Gigi played her college hockey at the University of Minnesota, where she helped the Gophers advance to the NCAA Women's Frozen Four in 2009 and earned All-WCHA Second Team honors and was named WCHA Outstanding Student-Athlete of the Year. 

Currently training in Florida, Marvin is hoping to make the 2018 U.S. Olympic Women's Hockey team that will compete for the gold at the Winter Olympics come February in South Korea. 

On this episode of the podcast, we learn about Gigi's journey to the Olympics, the dream of winning the gold, competing against her friends for a spot on the team, how she stays grounded in her faith and why Finding Nemo is her favorite movie. 

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Dec 14, 2017

Francis Chan is the founding pastor of Cornerstone Community Church and author of Crazy Love, Forgotten God, and Erasing Hell. He travels throughout the world challenging Christians to a higher commitment to Christ. He’s also the founder of Eternity Bible College and has been pastoring churches and discipling people for over 25 years. He currently lives with his family in the Bay Area where he oversees We Are Church, a network of house churches.

Adam Wainwright is a starting pitcher with the St. Louis Cardinals. In 13 years with the Cards, Waino has won 2 World Series, been elected to 3 All-Star teams, and was named a 2017 Silver Slugger award winner. Adam was also a guest on Episode 14 of this podcast. 

On this episode of the podcast, Francis and Adam sit down at a recent conference in San Antonio, TX with host Jason Romano to discuss their unique friendship, what Adam is learning from Francis' teaching, why it's important to use your platform to share the Gospel, and what is breaking Francis' heart in the church. This is a powerful listen!

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Dec 11, 2017

With a vision to create the best sports experience possible for every child, Caz McCaslin founded Upward Unlimited, the world's largest Christian sport league for young athletes. In 1995, Upward Unlimited launched Upward Sports and has grown under McCaslin's leadership and guidance from several hundred children playing in seven church basketball leagues to more than half a million children playing in 2,500 multi-sport clinics, camps, academies and leagues in 47 states.

Caz also has released a new book titled "Coach Em Up - Reclaiming Sports For the Benefit of the Athlete."

On this episode, we talk to Caz about starting Upward Basketball, why youth sports are broken, and how the founder of the game of basketball, Dr. James Naismith, actually invented basketball to be a ministry, much like Upward. 

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Dec 7, 2017

Minnesota Twins 2B Brian Dozier won a Gold Glove and is the first American League second baseman to hit 40 home runs in a season. 

Twins pitcher Kyle Gibson went 6-0 in his last 8 starts and finished with 12 wins in 2017. 

Both are teammates and devoted followers of Christ. 

On this episode of the podcast, we talk with Brian and Kyle about helping the Twins to an amazing turnaround from losing 100 games in 2016 to being in the playoffs in 2017. We also go inside the clubhouse to hear about their faith and how they live out who they are in Christ with their teammates each day. 

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Dec 4, 2017

Mark Price played 12 years in the NBA from 1986-1998. He's a 4-time NBA All Star and was named to the All-NBA First Team in 1993. 

Known as one of the best shooters in basketball, Price won the 1993 and 1994 NBA Three-Point Shootout. 

His number 25 is retired by the Cleveland Cavaliers.

In 2015, Price became the head basketball coach at the University of North Carolina Charlotte, where he is now in his 3rd season leading the 49ers. 

On this episode of the podcast, Mark Price shares his journey from NBA player to college coach, the biggest difference coaching NBA players vs college players, his biggest struggle spiritually and why Christ is at the center of everything he is as a husband, a Dad and a coach. 

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Nov 28, 2017

Dan Orlovsky played 12 seasons in the NFL with the Lions, Texans, Colts, and Buccaneers before retiring in October of 2017.

He was a standout quarterback in college at the University of Connecticut, where he set numerous passing records.

Selected in the 5th round of the 2005 NFL Draft by the Lions, Dan would be mentored in Detroit by quarterbacks Josh McCown and Jon Kitna. 

It was there that Kitna and McCown introduced Orlovsky to Jesus Christ and the sacrifice he made.

On this episode of the podcast, Dan Orlovsky shares his disappointment in being drafted in the 5th round, why he considered it a privilege to be a backup quarterback in the NFL, how it took him almost 18 months to accept Jesus Christ into his life, and why broadcasting might be in his future.


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Nov 21, 2017

Trey Burton is in his 4th season as a tight end for the Philadelphia Eagles.

He played his college ball at the University of Florida, where he found himself as a versatile athlete playing multiple positions for the Gators.

As a freshman in 2010, Burton broke the Gators record for most touchdowns in a single game, finding the end zone 6 times against Kentucky.

Despite a lot of success with Florida, Burton would go undrafted in 2014 before signing as a free agent with the Philadelphia Eagles.

Burton has made the most of his time, both on special teams, and as a pass receiver for Carson Wentz.

The Eagles started 9-1 in 2017 with the best record in the NFL and expectations are very high in Philadelphia.

Trey is married to Yesenia and has 3 children.

On this episode of the podcast, we talk to Trey Burton about the Eagles hot start, where his faith in Christ began, why he's so unashamed about the gospel, the development of his quarterback Carson Wentz, and how he came to baptize his teammates.

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Nov 20, 2017

Jim Gruenwald enters his ninth year as the head coach for the Wheaton College wrestling team in 2017-18. He is also the Head Strength Coach for Thunder Athletics.

Gruenwald, a two-time member of the U.S. Olympic Greco Roman wrestling team, came to Wheaton after serving as an assistant coach for U.S. Greco Roman wrestling team at the U.S. Olympic Education Center in Marquette, Michigan from 2005-09. Gruenwald finished sixth at 60 kg in the Greco Roman competition at the 2000 Olympics in Sydney and was 10th at the 2004 Olympics in Athens. A three-time U.S. Champion, Gruenwald completed his competitive career in 2008 as a National Champion. He also won titles in 2003 and 2004.

Gruenwald is a 1994 graduate of Maranatha Baptist Bible College, earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Secondary Math Education in 1994. He compiled a four-year record of 154-19 on the mat in his career at Maranatha. Gruenwald was a three-time National Christian College Athletic Association (NCCAA) National Champion, earning MVP honors in 1989 and 1991. A former Wheaton Invitational Champion, Gruenwald is a member of Northwestern University’s Midlands Championships 20-Win Club, with 22 career victories at the prestigious tournament.

Jim and his wife Rachel have six children: son Adin and five daughters, Arwyn, Ava, Autumn, Aleyse and Ashley. 

On this episode of the podcast, Coach Jim talks about the motto "Jesus Christ is life, the rest is just wrestling," why he believes balance is stupid, competing in the Olympics, and how he recruits his players. 

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Nov 16, 2017

T.C. Stallings is an actor, author and former pro football running back. 

He is one of the stars of the 2015 film "War Room," which reached number one at the box office in its second week.

Stallings played 4 years of college football at the University of Louisville, where he rushed for over 1,300 yards and scored 15 touchdowns in his career. 

He would go on to play 6 years of professional football in NFL Europe, the CFL, and the Arena League.

Stallings got his first crack at movies, playing a gang leader in the 2011 movie "Courageous."

On this episode of the podcast, T.C. Stallings talks about the need for prayer in our country, why he left football to pursue acting, growing up without a Dad, and how he feels about turning 40 years old. 

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Nov 13, 2017

Jarrett Payton is the son of legendary NFL running back Walter Payton. In July of 1993, when he was 12 years old, Jarrett introduced his father Walter into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. 

Playing football at the University of Miami, Jarrett played on a National Championship winning team in 2001, rushed for over 1,000 yards in 2003 and was the 2004 Orange Bowl MVP. 

Jarrett played in the NFL with the Tennessee Titans in the NFL as well as the CFL and the Indoor Football League. He retired from Pro Football in 2012. 

Currently, Jarrett is a sports broadcaster in Chicago for WGN and CLTV. He's a husband and father, and does work for both the Walter Payton Foundation, as well as his own foundation, the Jarrett Payton Foundation. 

On this episode of the podcast, Jarrett shares what it was like growing up with an NFL legend of a Dad, how faith played a role in his life as a child, giving a Hall of Fame introduction in front of millions of people, and how Emmitt Smith became a father figure to him after his Dad's death. 

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Nov 9, 2017

Chad Robichaux served in the United States Marine Corps, going on eight tours of duty in Afghanistan, fighting against terrorism.

He is a true hero.

Chad is the president and founder of Mighty Oaks Foundation, a leading military nonprofit serving the US military active-duty and veteran communities with highly successful peer-to-peer, faith-based, combat-trauma programs and combat-resiliency conferences. Chad and his team are dedicated to helping America’s military warriors and their families suffering from the unseen wounds of combat such as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

Chad and his wife, Kathy, have been married for twenty-two years and have three children. After years of deployments, their family personally faced the challenges of PTSD. Through the struggles that warriors face returning home, they now share a story of a victory in Christ and have dedicated their lives to sharing that story to mentor others like them.

Chad has been featured on such media outlets as Fox News, ForbesThe O’Reilly FactorThe Blaze with Glenn Beck, USA TodayChristian Post, Focus on the Family, The 700 Club, and a short biography film by I Am Second.

 Chad is a Medal of Valor recipient for his bravery beyond the call of duty in law enforcement. Outside of his work with veterans, Chad and his sons train and teach Brazilian jiu-jitsu. He is a third-degree black belt and a former Pro MMA world champion who has used his platform to advocate for civilian support of America’s warriors returning home while competing in the sport’s biggest events such as NBC’s World Series of Fighting, Showtime’s StrikeForce, MTV2’s Bellator FC, and Legacy FC on HDNet and AXStv.

On this episode of the podcast, Chad shares his incredible journey from growing up in a broken home, losing his brother at an early age, joining the military, describing some of the most horrific situations a person could ever endure, how he came to Christ, and his desire to help save lives by serving and helping others suffering from PTSD.

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Nov 6, 2017

His parents were killed 3 months apart when he was 19. He was homeless, he wasn't supposed to make it. 

But for Andy Andrews, not only did he make it, he persevered and is now impacting lives through his books and his talks. 

Hailed by a New York Times reporter as "someone who has quietly become one of the most influential people in America," Andy Andrews is a best-selling novelist, speaker and consultant for the world's largest corporations, most successful sports teams and fastest-growing organizations. 

He has spoken at the request of four different United States presidents.

Zig Ziglar said, "Andy Andrews is the best speaker I have ever seen."H

On this episode of the podcast, we hear Andy's incredible journey from  homelessness to successful author and how God has had a hand in his story from the beginning. Andy also shares an awesome story of the time he had an uncomfortable encounter with Alabama head football coach Nick Saban. 

You can follow Andy on twitter @AndyAndrews

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Nov 2, 2017

Amy Lawrence is the host of "After Hours with Amy Lawrence" on the CBS Sports Radio Network. The show can be heard weekdays from 2:00-6:00 AM, ET. 

Amy is a pioneer in sports radio, and one of the only females hosting a daily talk show on a national radio network. 

Prior to joining CBS in January 2013, Lawrence spent nine years at ESPN Radio where she was the only regular female host. Local radio stops include Providence, RI; Lebanon, NH; Rochester, NY; and Oklahoma City, OK, where she was the first female in state history to pilot her own sports radio talk show.

She graduated from Messiah College with bachelor’s degrees in Communications & Accounting, before earning her master’s degree in TV & Radio from Syracuse University. Lawrence was recently honored as one of The 100 Most Important Sports Talk Radio Hosts in America by Talkers Magazine for 2015, and was the only female personality to make the list.

On this episode of the podcast, we talk to Amy about her journey into network radio, her love for Larry Bird, growing up without a Dad, how God filled a giant void in her heart, and dealing with hate on social media. 

You can follow Amy on twitter @ALawRadio


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Oct 30, 2017

James McCann is a major league baseball catcher for the Detroit Tigers. He made his MLB debut in September 2014, and just finished his third full season in the big leagues in 2017. 

In 2017, he hit .253 with 13 HR and 49 RBI but it was his second half that really impressed people around baseball. In July, McCann batted .396 (19-for-48) with a .473 OBP, seven extra-base hits and 11 runs batted in. His hitting streak would extend to 14 games before ending on August 5.

McCann has been married to Jessica for 3 years and together, they're expecting twin boys in early 2018. 

On this episode of the podcast, James shares what its like to catch Justin Verlander, what he learned in 2017 on and off the field, the importance of accountability partners during a long MLB season, how he's preparing for fatherhood, and the incredible story of when his birth and how doctors gave him a 25% chance to survive. 

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Oct 26, 2017

Ted DiBiase is a former WWE wrestler, who was inducted into their hall of fame in 2010. 

Known as "The Million Dollar Man," DiBiase was regarded as one of the greatest villains in pro wrestling history.

In his 25 year career in the wrestling industry, Ted wrestled in some of the biggest venues in the world: Madison Square Garden, The Superdome, The Skydive, The Tokyo Dome and Wembley Stadium. 

Today, Ted is a full-time evangelist and motivational speaker. Officially ordained into the ministry, he speaks to churches, youth groups, men's meetings, businesses and in public schools and universities all over the world. Ted is also a spokesman for THE SUNSHINE FOUNDATION, an organization that grants wishes to terminally ill and handicapped children

Ted is married to his wife Melanie and has three sons, Michael, Ted Jr, and Brett. 

On November 7, Ted is releasing a documentary on his life, "THE PRICE OF FAME." It is available in theaters one night on November 7th. For more details, check out

On this episode of the podcast, Ted shares his incredible journey to the WWE, living the lavish life of a celebrity, almost losing his wife and family, how he turned from selfish to selfless, and why he decided to share his flaws and sins to the world in a new documentary.  

You can follow Ted on his twitter page @MDMTedDiBiase

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Oct 23, 2017

Geoff Blum played 14 MLB seasons with Montreal, Tampa, Houston, San Diego, Chicago and Arizona. He was a World Series hero in 2005, hitting the game-winning home run in the 14th inning of Game 3, leading the White Sox to a victory and their first championship in 88 years.

Blum is currently a TV analyst for his former team, the 2017 American League champion Houston Astros.

Geoff is a husband to Kory and a father to 4 girls including a set of triplets. 

On this episode of the podcast, we preview the 2017 World Series with Blum, look back at his own World Series memory from 2005, why he is loved and hated in the city of Houston, why his faith in Christ was something he struggled to share with others during his MLB career, and the emotional moment when he was baptized with his wife in November 2012. 

You can follow Geoff on twitter and Instagram @Blummer27

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You can follow Geoff on twitter and Instagram @Blummer27

Oct 19, 2017

Jordan Rogers is the North America Brand Manager for Nike Football. He's living the dream working for one of the biggest companies in the world. He's also a husband, and a dad. Life is good. 

But it wasn't always that way.

Starting at the age of 15, Jordan struggled with addiction to drugs including heroin. He was incarcerated for 13 months, homeless, and had no hope to live. 

But Jordan was able to find hope in Christ, and get sober. He's now 14 years clean and continues to use his story to impact others.

On this episode of the podcast, Jordan Rogers shares how he was first introduced to heroin, the struggle to stay sober, his rock bottom moment on the floor in a hotel room, putting his faith in God, and the new struggle that he and his wife went through after getting clean. 

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Oct 16, 2017

Justin Wren known for his mixed martial arts career in the UFC. Early in his career, he appeared on the Spike TV reality show "The Ultimate Fighter."

Growing up, Justin experienced large amounts of bullying, which led to depression and suicidal thoughts during his teen years. 

Justin's life began to hit rock bottom when he disappeared for eight weeks without anyone knowing where he was. Drugs, depression, addiction, anger, his life was spiraling out of control. 

After a life-changing experience in 2011, Justin founded Fight for the Forgotten, a nonprofit dedicated to securing land, freedom and clean water for the formerly enslaved Mbuti Pygmy tribe in the Ituri rainforest of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

In 2015, Water4 helped him expand beyond the DRC to bring clean water and economic security to thousands across the region.

On this episode of the podcast, Justin shares his incredible story from brokenness to redemption, how he overcame bullying, drug addiction and depression and is now using his message and platform to impact the world. 

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Oct 12, 2017

Emily Austen is a former reporter for Fox Sports. She also had stints at the Golf Channel and as a digital reporter with the Boston Celtics. 

In 2016, she was fired from her job for making offensive remarks on a Facebook LIVE interview with Barstool Sports. Her firing went viral and her story made national news. 

In the immediate aftermath, after apologizing, Emily went to a very dark place.

Emily has since rebounded and has been determined to turn her mess into a message of positivity by renewing her faith in Christ and speaking to colleges about the mistake she made and the importance of words and what we say about others. 

On this episode of the podcast, Emily shares why her dream was to become a sports reporter, how the incident with Barstool Sports came about, what she learned, how her faith in Christ was renewed and what she is doing now to change the narrative and be a positive light to college students. 

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Oct 9, 2017

David Johnson is a running back with the Arizona Cardinals. He was selected in the 3rd round (86th overall) by Arizona in the 2015 NFL Draft.

In his first two seasons, he's rushed for over 1,800 yards, 32 total touchdowns, and in 2015 was named 1st-team All-Pro and selected to his first Pro Bowl. 

Johnson dislocated his wrist in the 3rd quarter of the first game of the 2017 NFL season. He's expected to be out 2-3 months and possibly return at the end of the year.

Spending four seasons at Northern Iowa, Johnson rushed for over 4,600 yards and had 63 total touchdowns setting numerous records including career rushing yards, career rushing touchdowns, and career all-purpose yards. 

On this episode of the podcast, David Johnson shares how he's dealing with a broken wrist, whether he questioned God when he was injured, how he came to faith in Christ, becoming a Dad and what his biggest spiritual struggle is right now. 

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Oct 5, 2017

Chris Broussard is former ESPN NBA Insider who now works as a sports commentator at Fox Sports. 

Broussard started his broadcast career in 1990 at the Cleveland Plain-Dealer. After stops with the Akron-Beacon Journal, and the New York Times, Chris landed with ESPN in 2004. 

In the Fall of 2016, Broussard departed ESPN for a new venture with Fox Sports as a sports analyst. He also co-hosts a Saturday Night radio show on Fox Sports Radio and hosts a weekly NBA podcast called "In the Zone."

In 2009, Broussard introduced the idea of the K.I.N.G. Movement to Malik Carey, the youth minister at Bethany Church in West Orange, N.J. They started building and attracting support for the movement, and today it has approximately 150 members nationwide.

The name K.I.N.G. is an acronym for Knowledge, Inspiration and Nurture through God.

On this episode of the podcast, Chris shares his amazing story of coming to faith in Christ, why he left ESPN for FOX, who he likes in the 2016-17 NBA Finals, and if he regrets what he said in 2013 on ESPN's Outside the Lines regarding the Bible's view of homosexuality. 

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Sep 29, 2017

Tim Fortugno is a former Major League Baseball pitcher and currently a professional scout for the New York Mets.

But the story of baseball is just a small part of the incredible life journey that Tim has had. Growing up as a child in a broken home, Tim witnessed physical and emotional abuse at the hands of his step-father. At 15, Tim was ready to end it all, but God intervened and brought Tim to foster family that turned his life around and changed him forever.

An unlikely trek to professional baseball started to take place and at the age where most baseball players are giving up their dream of making to the Majors, Tim Fortugno, age 30, gets the call to the show.

On this podcast, you’ll hear Tim’s incredible story of overcoming childhood abuse, the moment he wanted to end it all, how he came to faith in Jesus, why baseball was taken away from him and how getting married and having a child at a young age actually opened the door for him to pursue a professional baseball career.

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Sep 26, 2017

Demario Davis is in his 6th year as a linebacker in the NFL. He was selected by the Jets in the third round of the 2012 NFL Draft. After four seasons in New York, he signed with the Browns in the offseason of 2016.

On June 1st, Davis was traded back to New York and is now once again starting at linebacker for the Jets at Met Life Stadium.

Through 3 games in the 2017 season, Demario is second in the NFL in tackles with 32 and he helped the Jets win their first game of the season in Week 3 over Miami 20-6.

But it was what happened prior to that win over the Dolphins that had everyone talking.

The comments from President Donald Trump regarding NFL players protesting the National Anthem struck a cord with the league's teams and players.

On this episode of the podcast, Demario Davis will talk about standing and locking arms with teammates during the National Anthem on Sunday, what went on in the team meeting the night before, why this has caused such division in our country and what the plans are for him and the Jets going forward.

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