We all knew this day was drawing near with each NFL season that passed; however, none of us really wanted to acknowledge the thought. John Madden has been such an icon in the world of sportscasting for the past decade and the face of the Madden Football game series. News of his retirement marks the end of a great run by Madden in the world of professional football.
I can't help but note that the recent passing of Harry Kalas, also 73 years old, probably played a big role in Madden's retirement; and I would not blame him if it did. He has already done so much for the sport. Madden was probably the most simultaneously exciting and educational NFL announcer to ever call a game. Unlike Howard Cosell, Madden is not a polarizing figure at all, he is widely loved and respected by all. Note: Cosell also passed away at age 77. All of these potential parallels had to have weighed on the mind of the Hall of Famer. A man who was so paranoid about travelling by air, he often drove across the country to games via his own bus (Madden Cruiser).
It will be weird not having Madden do the Superbowl next season or any Prime time games but Chris Colinsworth is a very capable replacement. Although, he might not be able to champion the tailgating process or continue the Turducken tradition, Colinsworth is ridiculously entertaining and very opinionated. He is a worthy replacement. Hopefully Troy Aikman's profile will also go up as a result, he has the potential of being the next big play-by-play announcer. The legacy of great announcers is still secure.
Appropriately, I wish Madden the best of luck in his future endeavours and I hope that he continues to be a spokesman for the NFL. Here is to a very illustrious career like none other. Cheers.