CBS' Dan Dierdorf Says Difficulty With Travel Led To Decision To Retire
CBS NFL analyst Dan Dierdorf yesterday announced he will retire from the broadcast booth following this season, but the Pro Football HOFer said that he "still feels mentally sharp, a serious concern among retired NFL players," according to Rachel Cohen of the AP. In some ways, the "physical limitations made the decision easy; he really had no choice." Dierdorf "considered retiring after last season." He jokingly said that the "hardest part was 'breaking up' with play-by-play announcer Greg Gumbel and their production team." Making the announcement now will allow Dierdorf "to thank all the team personnel who helped him over the years as he calls his final few games." He still may "do some broadcast work" in his hometown of St. Louis or radio that "doesn't require much travel" (AP, 11/20). Dierdorf said, "Physically it’s reached the point where it’s almost too difficult for me to travel. The travel has just gotten to be more than I can do on a consistent basis." In St. Louis, Jim Thomas notes Dierdorf has "two artificial knees and two artificial hips, and needs a cane to walk." He said that he officially informed CBS Sports Group Chair Sean McManus of his decision to retire "a week ago, and CBS made the announcement" yesterday. NBC's Bob Costas said of Dierdorf, "Just on a network basis, he had a tremendous career. And people forget, because it’s been a while, that he was on ‘Monday Night Football’ with Al Michaels and Frank Gifford. I always felt that at that time Dan was at the peak of his broadcasting powers." Thomas notes Dierdorf "moonlighted" for KMOX-AM "during the last seven years of his playing career." Dierdorf's time spent at KMOX "gave him a tremendous head start on others of his ilk" once his NFL career ended (ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH, 11/21).