Anthony Gonzalez Went From Catching Passes From Peyton Manning to Playing an Official Role in Impeaching Donald Trump
At one point in his life, Anthony Gonzalez got paid to catch passes from Peyton Manning. But the former Indianapolis Colts receiver hasn’t earned a paycheck for that skill in quite some time.
Instead, he has carved out another career that has allowed him to impact the world in far greater ways than he ever did on Sundays.
Because by trading in his helmet and shoulder pads for a business suit and tie, the former Ohio State star put himself in a position to play a role in impeaching Donald Trump.
Anthony Gonzalez played for the Colts from 2007-2011
After playing his college ball at Ohio State, Anthony Gonzalez watched his stock soar after a fantastic combine performance that included a 4.44 40-yard dash and a 38-inch vertical jump.
Despite only totaling 87 receptions for the Buckeyes, he still became a first-round pick. The Colts selected the sure-handed wideout 32nd overall in the 2007 NFL draft.
Gonzalez didn’t waste any time making an impact. In his rookie season, he started nine games and caught 37 passes for 576 yards and three touchdowns as the team’s primary slot receiver.
Having earned Peyton Manning’s trust, Gonzalez watched his opportunities and numbers rise in his second year with the Colts. He totaled 57/664/4 on 79 targets in his age-24 season.
Unfortunately for the former first-round pick, his breakout 2008 campaign represented the peak of his brief time in the NFL.
Injuries derailed what many expected to be a long and productive career in Indianapolis. Instead, Gonzalez only played 40 games with the AFC South franchise.
From NFL wideout to Ohio politician
After catching 99 passes for 1,307 yards and seven touchdowns between 2007-2011, Anthony Gonzalez had to call it quits due to persistent injury problems. However, Peyton Manning’s former slot receiver has managed to find success in another field since retiring from the NFL.
Only his new job might not be what you’d quite expect from a person who got paid to run routes and catch footballs.
In 2018, Gonzalez filed to run as a Republican for the United States House of Representatives in Ohio’s 16th congressional district. He ended up winning the election with about 57% of the vote, according to Yahoo Sports.
Of course, it helped to have the public (and financial) support of an NFL star on his side.
According to Cleveland.com, Manning donated $5,400 to his former teammate’s campaign. Gonzalez also garnered donations from other sports figures, including Cleveland Browns owner Jimmy Haslam.
Since assuming office on Jan. 3, 2019, he has worked hard to serve his constituents. And recently, the receiver-turned-politician played a major role in impeaching Donald Trump.
Peyton Manning’s former receiver helped impeach Donald Trump by simply doing his job
Just over a year ago, Anthony Gonzalez faced a major decision that carried major implications for his political career. Ultimately, Peyton Manning’s former receiver voted against both articles of impeachment in the first impeachment of Donald Trump.
This time, however, he took a different approach.
On January 13, Gonzalez, along with nine other Republicans, voted for the article of impeachment in the second impeachment of Trump.
The Ohio representative released a statement about his decision via Twitter.
“The President of the United States helped organize and incite a mob that attacked the United States Congress in an attempt to prevent us from completing our solemn duties as prescribed by the Constitution,” Gonzalez wrote in his statement. “In doing so, five people have died – including a Capitol Police Officer – many more have been injured, and our democracy has been shaken.”
He further added, “During the attack itself, the President abandoned his post while many members asked for help, thus further endangering all present. These are fundamental threats not just to people’s lives but to the very foundation of our Republic.”
Gonzalez cited “the full scope of events leading up to January 6th” as well as “the President’s lack of response as the United States Capitol was under attack” as reasons why he felt compelled to support impeachment.
All statistics courtesy of College Reference and Pro Football Reference.