Ravens’ Tom Zbikowski turns to pro boxing

Ravens safety Tom Zbikowski will be making a little money as a two-sport athlete this offseason, with a professional boxing match scheduled for 10 days from now.

Zbikowski is listed on the undercard of the March 12 event at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, where he’s slated to take on an opponent to be named later. This isn’t some fly-by-night boxing promoter throwing a football player in the ring as a publicity stunt; it’s a major fight card headlined by a main event of Miguel Cotto vs. Ricardo Mayorga.

According to ESPN boxing reporter Dan Rafael, Zbikowski just needs to get licensed by the Nevada State Athletic Commission at its March 8 meeting, and his fight on March 12 will go off. Getting licensed shouldn’t be a problem for Zbikowski, who participated in dozens of amateur boxing matches in his youth and fought professionally once before, in 2006, winning a first-round technical knockout at Madison Square Garden. At the time, Zbikowski played for Notre Dame, and the NCAA ruled that he could box professionally and retain his amateur status as a football player. Video of that fight is here.

NFL players’ contracts prohibit them from boxing and other activities where the risk of injury is significant, but Zbikowski is a restricted free agent who isn’t under contract, so the Ravens can’t stop him from boxing. And if the owners lock the players out, all NFL players will be free to box, wrestle, participate in a mixed martial arts fight or do anything else to make money, injury risks be damned.

Of course, a player who participated in a combat sport and suffered an injury significant enough that he couldn’t play once the lockout ends and the season starts would be placed on the non-football injury list, and wouldn’t get paid until he was healthy enough to play. So it’s unlikely that many players will participate in such activities.

But the option is out there for Bart Scott to wrestle, Zbikowski to box or any other player to fight in a cage. If there’s a lengthy lockout, I wouldn’t be surprised if more players follow in Scott and Zbikowski’s footsteps.

14 responses to “Ravens’ Tom Zbikowski turns to pro boxing

  1. I Can’t Wait 4 Thursday Night. TNA on Spike. Angle puts Scott n the most fake & boring finisher n all of wrestling. The ankle lock. Atleast most of the finishers look somewhat real, but the anklee lock totally sucks!

  2. whats with the zibby hate???

    @rebeltitan he knocked him out in the first round
    @bucks12965 you must not watch any ravens games
    @timegambit cant remember him getting a concussion while playing for the ravens
    @citizenstrange so a former pro boxer fighting is “This isn’t some fly-by-night boxing promoter throwing a football player in the ring as a publicity stunt;” you must not be able to read.

  3. steeltownpride says:
    Mar 2, 2011 9:00 PM
    Like to see him fight Hines Ward lol .


    You want Zibby to fight him or dance with him?

  4. @kevo126:

    Check your facts again there, Mr. Righteous. He’s been concussed with the ravens and now wants to box.

    Going from the #2 sport for brain injuries to the #1 sport for brain injuries is all I’m sayin’. He’s gonna enter the ring already susceptible to concussions. His choice and good luck.

    No hate here, buddy. Just a worried fan.

  5. Just like his alma mater, he beats up on the easy opponents.

    Who has a worse muffin top, Tommy Z’s opponent or Charlie Weiss?

    Just wait till Tommy Z faces the Navy of the boxing world!

    I heard that TZ refused to schedule an opponent from the south.

    Brady Quinn was the guest ring girl for this fight.

    If TZ wins a belt, he’ll be the first Golden Domer in 30 years that will be able to call himself a champ.


  6. i can picture tom fighting hines ward. the bell rings to end the round, tom turns around and hines blindsides him when he isnt looking. that sounds familiar

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