NFL legend Troy Aikman blasted fellow Fox Sports colleague and radio host Doug Gottlieb over his criticism of Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck's unexpected retirement. Gottlieb described Luck's sudden departure as "the most millennial thing ever."
Aikman defended the 29-year-old's controversial decision on Twitter on Sunday. He slammed the FS1 host for his tweet, calling it total bulls**t." Aikman wrote, "What qualifies you to decide how someone should live their life?"
A three-time Super Bowl-winning quarterback and Super Bowl XXVII MVP, Aikman led the Dallas Cowboys through 12 seasons, having been chosen as the top overall draft pick in 1989. He has been a lead analyst for NFL on Fox since the 2002 season.
"So you're now the authority on what motivates Andrew Luck? And if his decisions don't fit into what you think is best for him then you rip him? Guess that keeps you employed on FS1. Nice," Aikman added.
Aside from Aikman, a flood of others called Gottlieb out for his tone deaf comment. One NFL player pointed out Gottlieb's criminal past. "You stole credit cards because working was 'too hard,'" replied Torrey Smith, a wide receiver for the Carolina Panthers. Gottlieb was charged in 1996 with felony theft for allegedly using stolen credit cards to purchase nearly $1,000.
His remarks came afterthat he was retiring from the NFL, less than two weeks before the start of the regular season. Luck had been one of the premier stars in the game until devastating injuries — including a torn labrum of his throwing shoulder — and rehabilitation led to him calling it quits.
"This is not an easy decision," Luck told reporters. "Honestly, it's the hardest decision of my life. But it is the right decision for me. For the last four years, I've been in a cycle of injury, pain, rehab. And it's been unceasing and unrelenting both in season and offseason. I've felt stuck in it and the only way I see out is to no longer play football. It's taken the joy out of this game."