Former NFL reporter and commentator John Clayton died Friday after a “brief illness.” He was 67 years old.
Clayton, known as the “Professor,” worked for 23 years for The Pittsburgh Press and the Tacoma News Tribune, where he was a reporter covering Seattle Seahawks, The Pittsburgh Steelers and NFL, a Seattle statement said. In 1995, he became an NFL insider for ESPN. Most recently, he was on the radio, leading the John Clayton show on Seattle weekends and reporting for the Seattle Seahawks radio network.
He received the Dick McCann Award in 2007 for “a long and excellent report on professional football,” the Seahawks wrote.
“For five decades, he has covered the league with endless energy and professionalism,” NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said in a statement on Saturday. “He has earned my immense respect and admiration as a journalist, but more importantly as a wonderful person, especially when it comes to the love, care and devotion of his wife Pat.”
У statement late Friday, Steelers called Clayton “a Pittsburgh media icon” who later “became one of the most respected national NFL reporters.”
Clayton has also long been a selection to the Professional Football Hall of Fame, which tweeted“His influence and contribution to the football game will be lacking.”
According to ESPNTen days ago, Clayton announced that longtime Seahawks defender Russell Wilson is leaving for Denver Broncos. In response to the news of Clayton Wilson’s death tweeted“We will all miss your words and brilliance.”
ESPN network too tweeted condolences to the Clayton family on Friday. “We’ve all learned something from the Professor over the years, and we’re going to miss him a lot.”