"Jason worked as a guest analyst in studio on a few shows last year and we were extremely impressed with his performance and the depth of knowledge he was able to share with the viewer," ESPN senior coordinating producers Seth Markman said. "He comes across as smooth on the air as he was in rushing the passer all those years as a player."
Taylor is used to being on television. Besides playing for national audiences every Sunday, he also also starred in season six of Dancing with the Stars, where he finished as the contest's runner up.
On the football field, Taylor was a six-time Pro Bowl selection and named the NFL Defensive Player of the Year in 2006. He finished his career with 139.5 sacks, good for sixth in NFL history.
He'll be a candidate to join the NFL Hall of Fame in five years, and openly admits he hopes to "eventually join" the NFL's elites. The exposure of being on national television regularly should enhance his profile.
"For the past 15 NFL seasons, I walked into a locker room, player's lounge or training room and always knew that a television would be tuned in to ESPN," Taylor said. "I am extremely excited to be joining their team now and look forward to contributing to analysis that is regarded by players, coaches and fans as the worldwide leader in the NFL and overall sports coverage."
Ironically, Taylor's addition to ESPN means he'll have to work with former Dolphins czar Bill Parcells at times considering Parcells is also part of ESPN's football crew.
In a clash of egos, Parcells banished Taylor from the Dolphins twice during his run as the team's top decision maker. However, Taylor was allowed to finish his career in Miami last season, where the 37-year-old contributed 19 tackles, seven sacks and a forced fumble as a pass rushing specialist.
Taylor will become the second former Dolphins player working as a national football analyst. Hall of Fame quarterback Dan Marino has been with CBS since his retirement in 1999.