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Morning Briefing: NFL player Mark Sanchez is stepping down

Mark Sanchez
Mark Sanchez with the Jets.
(Bill Kostroun / Associated Press)

Mark Sanchez is retiring from the NFL after 10 seasons, according to multiple media reports. The New York Post is reporting that he will join ABC/ESPN as a college football analyst. Maybe now he can leave the infamous “butt fumble” behind him.

Sanchez had plenty of success in his playing career, including a tremendous season as USC’s starting quarterback and back-to-back AFC championship appearances with the New York Jets. But he will always be remembered for one unfortunate play.

Against the New England Patriots on Thanksgiving night 2012, Sanchez attempted to run the ball on a broken play and ran into the rear end of right guard Brandon Moore. Sanchez dropped the ball upon impact, and Patriots safety Steve Gregory picked it up and returned it 32 yards for a touchdown.

A prophetic Sanchez said at the time: “Hopefully we’ll laugh about it later.”

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Video of the so-called “butt fumble” went viral, and the play is still mocked to this day.

For many folks, Sanchez’s story basically ends there. But his NFL career continued. The following season, Sanchez won the starting job over rookie quarterback Geno Smith but suffered a season-ending shoulder injury during a preseason game. Sanchez was released by the Jets the following offseason and spent the rest of his career mainly as a backup in Philadelphia, Dallas and Washington.

Now he’s embarking on a new career. As much as we all love the “butt fumble,” maybe it’s time to let it go and allow the man to get on with his life. Hopefully Sanchez won’t be the butt of too many jokes at his new gig.

Sports poll

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Six new members of the Baseball Hall of Fame were inducted over the weekend. Which of the following Dodgers do you think deserve a spot in the Hall of Fame? You can vote for as many as you like: Steve Garvey, Orel Hershiser, Gil Hodges, Don Newcombe, Fernando Valenzuela, Maury Wills. Vote in our poll at https://poll.fm/10368688 or email me your choices at houston.mitchell@latimes.com. Results will be revealed next week.

Double duty

Shaun White, who has won three Olympic gold medals in snowboarding, announced on “The Today Show” on Tuesday that he’ll be competing in the world skateboarding championships in Brazil in September, which puts him on the path to compete in skateboarding at the 2020 Tokyo Games.

“First steps are first,” White said. “I’m really exciting to see the fact that skateboarding is in the Olympics now. I’ve been watching the competitions lately. I’ve been really inspired, doing a lot of skating myself this summer. ...I thought why don’t I test the waters, compete a little and see what happens. After that I’ll probably make the big announcement of what I’m going to do.”

Spoiler alert: You usually don’t make a big announcement saying you aren’t trying out for the Olympics. And before you say he shouldn’t do it, consider that he has the X Games record for most skateboarding gold medals with five.

Speaking of five, only five people have won medals in the Summer and Winter Olympics. The only one to win a gold medal in both was Eddie Eagan of the U.S., who won gold in the 1920 Summer Olympics in boxing and gold in the 1932 Winter Olympics in bobsled.

“There’s been so much exposure for the Winter Olympics for my career,” White said. “But I’ve been just as much a skateboarder in my other side of my life. That was a goal of my life to really pursue skateboarding and snowboarding and try to be the best at both. I really took a backseat to skateboarding in my career when snowboarding really took off. I’ve been skating since I was a little kid.”


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