J.J. Watt on ‘Saturday Night Live’: Here are all the athletes who hosted SNL and their best sketches
Tom Brady: Touchdown at the CarnivalOK, this one isn’t that funny, but it’s entertaining to watch Tom Brady miss throw after throw, even if it’s by design. Eddie Murphy. Steve Carrell. J.J. Watt?The Texans star is next to enter the pretty exclusive club of pro athletes to host “Saturday Night Live” on Saturday, Feb. 1. Some have been memorable, others … less so. J.J. Watt is hosting SNL on Saturday — and he has a lot of studying to do. pic.twitter.com/reVvZaKDQO— Sporting News (@sportingnews) January 30, 2020For every Peyton Manning, there’s been countless Michael Phelps. There’s been no clear formula for who succeeds on the show and who doesn’t, but not for lack of NBC’s trying. In all, there have been 32 different professional athletes to host “SNL” in 882 episodes to air on NBC in the 45-year run of the show.Given Watt’s personality, it seems like he could definitely be one of the better sports stars to host the show in some time, and he’s the first since pro athlete to host the show since Charles Barkley in 2018, and the 12th football player to get behind the mic.J.J. Watt joins list of athletes to host ‘SNL’AthleteEpisodeAir dateSportFran TarkentonSeason 2, Episode 13Jan. 29, 1977FootballO.J. SimpsonSeason 3, Episode 12Feb. 25, 1978FootballBill RussellSeason 5, Episode 3Nov. 3, 1979BasketballJohn MaddenSeason 7, Episode 10Jan. 30, 1982FootballBob UeckerSeason 10, Episode 2Oct. 13, 1984BaseballAlex KarrasSeason 10, Episode 12Feb. 2, 1985FootballHulk HoganSeason 10, Episode 15March 30, 1985Pro wrestlingMarvin HaglerSeason 11, Episode 17May 17, 1986BoxerBilly MartinSeason 11, Episode 18May 24, 1986BaseballJoe MontanaSeason 12, Episode 9Jan. 24, 1987FootballWalter PaytonSeason 12, Episode 9Jan 24. 1987FootballCarl WeathersSeason 13, Episode 10Jan. 13, 1988FootballWayne GretzkySeason 14, Episode 19May 13, 1989HockeyChris EvertSeason 15, Episode 5Nov. 11, 1989TennisMichael JordanSeason 17, Episode 1Sept. 28, 1991BasketballCharles Barkley*Season 19, Episode 1Sept. 25, 1993BasketballNancy KerriganSeason 19, Episode 15March 12, 1994Figure skatingGeorge ForemanSeason 20, Episode 9Dec. 17, 1994BoxingDeion SandersSeason 20, Episode 13Feb. 18, 1995Football/baseballThe Rock**Season 25, Episode 15March 18, 2000Pro wrestlingDerek JeterSeason 27, Episode 11Dec. 1, 2001BaseballJonny MoseleySeason 27, Episode 13March 3, 2002Olympic skiingJeff GordonSeason 28, Episode 9Jan. 11, 2003NASCAR driverAndy RoddickSeason 29, Episode 5Nov. 8, 2003TennisTom BradySeason 30, Episode 17April 16, 2005FootballLance ArmstrongSeason 31, Episode 4Oct. 29, 2005CyclingPeyton ManningSeason 32, Episode 16March 24, 2007FootballLeBron JamesSeason 33, Episode 1Sept. 29, 2007BasketballMichael PhelpsSeason 34, Episode 1Sept. 13. 2008SwimmingEli ManningSeason 37, Episode 11May 5, 2012FootballJohn CenaSeason 42, Episode 9Dec. 10, 2016Pro wrestlingJ.J. WattSeason 45, Episode 12Feb. 1, 2020Football*Barkley would host three more episodes of “SNL.”**The Rock would host four more episodes of “SNL.”Best ‘SNL’ athlete sketchesPeyton Manning: United WayNo surprise here. Manning has made a second career out of commercials and endorsements, and his true range as an actor was on display in this 2007 SNL digital short. If I had a dollar for every time I heard, “Get your head out of your ass! You suck!” I could retire comfortably in Lake Como, Italy.Joe Montana and Walter Payton: Church TalkThe best part about this sketch starring the great Dana Carvey, is that Montana and Payton were barely able to keep it together. Reminder: Sunday is the Satan Bowl. I mean Super Bowl. Well, isn’t that special?Derek Jeter: Point, counter-pointSeth Myers with the perfect impersonation of baseball Twitter in this sketch.Derek Jeter: Yankee wivesNo. 2 for No. 2: The iconic image of him in a wig and lipstick is everlasting. The Rock: Mr. Peepers and Papa PeepersI wonder if this Dwayne Johnson guy has a career in Hollywood.Eli Manning: Embarrassing textManning and his “aw, shucks” demeanor couldn’t really touch what brother Peyton had done on the show five years earlier, and that’s what makes this sketch pretty good: Manning was probably playing himself.Michael Jordan: Daily AffirmationSome years before “Space Jam” entered pop culture’s consciousness for eternity, Jordan hosted an episode of “SNL.” “His Airness” wasn’t all that bad on the show, and how he held it together in this sketch is stuff of legend.