You probably know this record-holding New York Giant for being one of the best defensive ends in the game. Yet, it might surprise you that football legend Michael Strahan is a big cigar fan. When he’s not on TV, one of Strahan’s notable quotes is saying that a good cigar is something he can’t live without.
Strahan has gone so far as to build himself a luxurious, cigar-friendly “man cave.” Here, he relaxes and gets away from his busy schedule. It even includes a custom, refrigerator-sized humidor. According to Strahan, his favorite way to decompress is to sit in his man cave and “do nothing” for a while; this generally translates to smoking a great cigar and watching television to unwind.
From Young Upstart to Football Legend
Before the football legend lived the cigar lifestyle alongside up-and-coming NFL greats like Cam Newton, he was a typical college athlete. He played defensive end at Texas Southern University while following in the footsteps of his Uncle Art.
During his time at Texas Southern, Strahan began turning heads. He had an imposing frame and was deceptively quick. By his Junior year, he became the frequent target of double-team coverage. It was a term dubbed by his coaches as “Strahan rules.”
Strahan was named player of the year twice as part of the South Western Athletic Conference. During his Junior year, he led the conference in sacks. His career record of 41 sacks still stands as a Texas Southern University Record.
Going Pro and Rough Starts
In 1993 Strahan was drafted to the New York Giants. His first year was unremarkable. He played only six games due to injuries. Although he continued playing, his first few seasons with the Giants proved less than stellar.
It wasn’t until his 1997 season that Strahan broke away from this reputation. He showed the NFL and fans why he was one of the best in the business and a true football legend in the making. He ended the season with 14 sacks and made his first Pro Bowl that year.
His 98′ season was even more impressive. Strahan recorded 15 sacks and another Pro Bowl nomination. From here, he continued his success. In 2001, he set the NFL record for most sacks in a single season.
On February 3, 2008, Strahan took his team through the win Super Bowl XLII. They beat the New England Patriots in what was widely considered one of their biggest upsets. Following the Super Bowl win, Strahan retired from playing professional football. Instead, the football legend moved on to other endeavors.
Post-NFL Career Change and Cigar Lifestyle
Post-NFL life did not leave Strahan out of the spotlight. It’s hard not to find him appearing on television somewhere. Between becoming a morning talk show host, a game show host, and a sports analyst, he stays busy. But that’s why Strahan says he loves the time he sits back and enjoys a cigar.
Strahan says the first cigar that captured his tastebuds was a Cohiba. From then on, he felt at home smoking cigars. Nowadays, he has his favorites. You’ll find him smoking sticks like Gurkhas, Padrons, and Olivas. Yet, he’s also open to experimenting with whatever his friends in the cigar business send him.
Never one to shy away from work, Strahan admits that he likes to get away to his secret hideout at least once or twice a week. It’s a way for him to muffle the noise of the city. It also gives him the perfect reason to enjoy a cigar in private since he spends so much time on air.
What’s Next For the Football Legend?
Today, the football legend stays busy with all his television appearances. Yet, he still has time for other activities. In addition to smoking great sticks, Strahan also collects cigars. He’s also into cars and a handful of different hobbies.
When he’s not in the news, Strahan stays busy with philanthropic work. He supports organizations like St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital and serves as an ad campaign spokesperson.
Strahan is busy building his branded clothing and accessories line. That includes men’s apparel, suits, and shoes. So chances are, even if you aren’t seeing or hearing him, you might find yourself wearing clothing by Strahan.
Truthfully, it looks like Strahan is going nowhere soon. As a mainstay on the morning talk show Good Morning America, he is in many people’s living rooms five days a week. Add to that his roles as a sports analyst for Fox Sports and host of the game show $100,000 Pyramid, and it’s easy to see the many places you’ll find Strahan in the spotlight each week.
Strahan continues making cameos in movies and television as well. In addition, he’s had his share of more minor roles in the acting world. Whether you’re a fan of this Giant football legend or not, one thing is sure. You’ll continue seeing more of him.