The Saints QB may have more desirable qualities than any sports figure when it comes to convincing America that he belongs in the Oval Office. Winning smile. Winning pedigree. Inspirational powers (have you seen those pregame chants?). Leadership (both in the huddle and on the sideline without his coach). And clearly, a family man. But what may truly set him apart is what he did in New Orleans in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, uniting and ultimately helping to uplift a community battered by the nation’s worst natural disaster — a pretty riveting trait considering recent times.
You're good sports, but ...
We're looking for some new candidates. And as sports fans, we have plenty of heroes we'd vote for if they ran for president. There are even a few folks in sports we don't like but we respect enough to elect 'em. It's a tough job, so we need gridiron warriors ... guys who play hardball ... floor generals, and much more. See who we'd put on the ballot.
Hate him or love him, the NFL commissioner leads with an iron will and doesn't bend to pressure. He's presided over an unprecedented era of prosperity in his league and helped even the sorriest strugglers. If the Browns can be sold for $1 billion, imagine what he could do to improve the rest of the country's fortunes.
"The Admiral" served in the Navy after his collegiate career was over and has served his community ever since his NBA career ended. He founded the Carver Academy in San Antonio and has donated more than $11 million to the school. As a player, despite his Hall of Fame pedigree, he ceded his role as the primary option in the San Antonio Spurs offense when the younger Tim Duncan joined the team. Setting aside personal gain for the betterment of the team and the fan base, Robinson made a choice that cost him stats and brought his fans two rings. Don’t you wish we had more of that in Washington? If he ran with Duncan as the "Twin Towers" — their nickname during their playing days — there's no way they lose.
Baseball is America's pastime, and no player is more iconic than the New York Yankees captain. He's been a winner his whole career and the poster child for uniting the nation's ultimate melting pot, New York City. He'd have no problem winning the female vote — or the vote of guys who envy his dating exploits — and would reach a younger, hipper cross-section of voters as a single, swingin' president. Sure, he might have a Lewinsky-type moment or two, but he has Clinton's charisma and could talk his way out of it. Remember, he's been dealing with the New York media his whole career.
Is there any athlete who seems more ready for a political career? Tebow has swayed millions of fans who love his Christian faith, strong family values and admirable work ethic, despite the fact he's perhaps the least-accomplished athlete on this list. But it's also the fact that his NFL career is seemingly going nowhere that makes him a good candidate to run for office. Tebow speaks to the underdog, the Middle American, the Abercrombie & Fitch crowd . . . practically everyone except fantasy football players looking for a QB. It's time to get him off the bench and onto the ballot ... for 2024, when he's old enough to serve. And hey, he seems to be free right now.
The Duke coach is a proven winner who could run on a platform of education. Coach K knows how to get his message through to both 18-year-olds and millionaires — and 18-year-old millionaires. And he knows a thing or two about succeeding in overseas markets, striking gold in China, Turkey and England.
Eli Manning & Peyton Manning
American politics haven’t had a really strong dynasty since the heydays of Camelot. Well, why can’t the Mannings be the new Kennedys? Both Eli and Peyton come from strong lineage with dad Archie, both are proven winners, and their political reach could span the nation, with their roots in the Bayou, college fame in the South and professional ties to the Northeast, Midwest and West. There's no one else you want leading you in a big game, and Peyton has proven to be king of the comebacks, so you know he wouldn't be fazed bringing us back from a $16 trillion debt.
Experience. Leadership. Toughness. Not even a black eye from the most famous cheap shot of the Olympics could keep America's lead Golden Girl down. Helping the Americans to a hard-fought gold in London, the captain proved she has what it takes to stand up to any foe the world over.
When it comes to actually combating the political machine in Washington, the US probably could use a few more Bulldogs in charge. This particular Bulldog led one of the most unlikely, unheralded World Series champions in baseball history, pitching at a historic level when his team needed him most. With his career on the field long over, Hershiser has tried his hand in coaching, broadcasting and business, displaying a willingness to branch out and take on new challenges. And it looks like he’s already found himself a running mate who could throw some wild Rose Garden bashes; if he ran with Slash, it'd surely end up in a cold November reign.
He’s got that winning smile. He’s got that glitz-and-glamour appeal. He’s got trophies to back up his résumé. And he’s got money! The man credited with running the most famous offense in NBA history also has proven his mettle at running a business, many times over. And Magic is a man of the people, rescuing Los Angeles’ beloved Dodgers and raising his standing to beyond-presidential levels in the City of Angels. So when it comes to campaigning, he’s got the cash to spend. And when it comes to debating, he’s got Matt Kemp’s bat to back him up.
A total foreign relations expert. Who can trump marrying a Brazilian model and then traveling the world with her? And could there be a more popular First Lady than Gisele? Sure, the folks in New York likely can’t stand Brady — and would you vote for a guy who wears Uggs? — but he’s in the AFC East, so the fans in DC are more apt to be nonpartisan when it comes to the Pats QB. He’s used to handling the media, has made plenty of trips to the White House and has a secret weapon . . . is anybody better suited to sit in a war room than Bill Belichick?
Robert Griffin III
Talk about reaching across the aisle. Has anybody united the nation’s capital like RG3? For all of the rock-star appeal that Obama brought to the White House, how many Heismans does he own? How many passing records has he smashed? And what’s his moniker . . . BO1? Besides, isn’t about time we had a leader unafraid to wear Scooby-Doo socks to the United Nations?