FOX Sports continues to bolster its 2020 NFL on-air lineup, today announcing Super Bowl champion and three-time Pro Bowler Jonathan Vilma joins FOX Sports as an NFL game analyst. The announcement was made by Brad Zager, Executive Producer and Executive Vice President, Head of Production and Operations, FOX Sports.
A 10-year veteran NFL linebacker, BCS national champion, and prominent college football studio analyst the past several years, Vilma makes his NFL analyst debut Sundays on FOX this fall.
“FOX Sports is thrilled to welcome Jonathan Vilma to the NFL booth,” Zager said. “His proven talent on TV and passion for the game of football make him the perfect choice to join our FOX NFL team this fall.”
Prior to FOX Sports, the three-time Pro Bowler spent four years at ABC and ESPN, serving as a studio analyst for ABC’s college pregame, halftime and postgame shows in 2018 and 2019, and as an ESPN college football analyst beginning in 2016. Vilma also regularly appeared on several ESPN programs, including “Get Up” and “First Take,” in addition to time at NBC and NBCSN as a pregame and halftime analyst covering Notre Dame football in 2015.
“I thoroughly enjoyed my time in the studio, but calling games is a much different animal and a challenge I wanted to undertake at FOX Sports,” Vilma said. “My goal is to show fans the nuances of what makes players and coaches great; to entertain and inform viewers about the game I love. I’m excited to provide insight and have fun while doing so.”
Vilma as selected out of the University of Miami by the New York Jets as the 12th pick in the first round of the 2004 NFL Draft. After being named the 2004 NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year, he went on to lead the league in tackles (169) in 2005 and was named to his first Pro Bowl on the strength of 128 solo tackles, six passes defensed, four forced fumbles and one interception. After suffering a season-ending knee injury in Week 7 of the 2007 season, the defensive leader was traded to the New Orleans Saints in February 2008.
The partnership was a fruitful one, with Vilma serving as a defensive captain in the Saints’ run to the Super Bowl XLIV title in 2009, a season in which he led the club in tackles and was named to the Pro Bowl for the second of three times (2005, 2010). Vilma retired following the 2013 season and was inducted into the New Orleans Saints Hall of Fame in October 2017.
A standout at the University of Miami, Vilma helped lead the team to the 2001 BCS National Championship, in addition to earning a spot on the All-BIG EAST First Team (2001) and All-American honors (2003). He was selected three times to the BIG EAST All-Academic Team, earned the Jack Lambert Trophy (2003) and was a finalist for the Butkus Award in his senior year (2003).
The son of Haitian immigrant parents, Vilma founded the Jonathan Vilma Foundation in 2010 after the Haiti earthquake to assist with the country’s rebuilding efforts, with a focus on a charter school for children ages elementary through high school.
Vilma grew up in Coral Gables, Fla., and graduated from the University of Miami’s School of Business Administration with a bachelor’s degree in finance. He currently resides in Miami with his daughter, Samarra. You may follow Vilma on Instagram at @jonvilma.