NEW YORK — Mark Sanchez could have graced the covers of the September issues of several sports and men’s magazines.
“I knew with ‘Hard Knocks’ coming up this year there would be so much exposure,” the New York Jets quarterback said of HBO’s preseason reality show that made him even more famous.
“We didn’t need any more pressure than we already had,” Sanchez added.
The second-year player, who turned 24 last week, sounded like a veteran business executive Tuesday talking about his brand, his marketing team, companies that align with his values.
“By doing very little, it amounts to a lot here in New York,” Sanchez said. “That’s the thing you have to remember: Less is more.”
On Tuesday, Sanchez made one of those selective appearances for a home fitness video game, Ubisoft’s “Your Shape Fitness Evolved.” Sanchez noted that “you don’t have to be an NFL player” to play the game, that it was perfect for somebody who hadn’t worked out in a while and wasn’t comfortable going to a gym.
A product that offers activities such as yoga to average folks hoping to lose weight may seem like an odd match for a pro football star, but Sanchez sees it as a natural endorsement.
“Their company values align with mine on keeping people active,” he said. “Instead of just sitting down and moving your thumbs a little bit, it gets you really involved.”
As the starting quarterback on a New York team tied for the league’s best record, Sanchez is already one of the NFL’s most high-profile players even though the Jets don’t ask him to win games by himself with his arm. He said there was no reason to fret about the swelling in his right calf, which he hurt in the overtime win over Cleveland — he expected to practice fully this week leading into Sunday’s game against Houston.
Sanchez’s broad appeal has led to many offers that have little to do with his sport. He said he was sticking to opportunities that were connected to football or charitable.
“For every one we do we probably turn away maybe hundreds, from TV shows to reality this and that, even charities,” Sanchez said. “That’s the hardest thing to do is to say no to charities.”
It’s been easy to say no to reality TV.
“I don’t need my own reality show,” Sanchez said. “That’s just not my thing.”