Pro Football Hall of Famer Michael Irvin has been pulled from NFL Network's Super Bowl week coverage after a woman complained about his conduct during an alleged incident on Sunday (February 5).
“Michael Irvin will not be a part of NFL Network’s Super Bowl LVII week coverage,” said Alex Riethmiller, NFL Media vice president of communications, in a statement obtained by the Dallas Morning News on Wednesday (February 8).
NFL Media didn't specify the nature of the woman's accusations made against the former Dallas Cowboys wide receiver. Irvin described the interaction with the woman as a brief, public and largely non-physical encounter, denying that he had any physical contact beyond a handshake shared prior to going their separate ways.
Irvin said he struck up a conversation with the woman -- who he hadn't met previously -- after returning to the hotel at which he is staying in Glendale, Arizona, after having dinner and drinks with former Cowboys teammate Michael Brooks.
“Honestly, I’m a bit baffled with it all,” Irvin told the Dallas Morning News in a phone interview from Arizona. “This all happened in a 45-second conversation in the lobby. When I got back after going out … I came into the lobby, and I talked to somebody. I talked to this girl. I don’t know her, and I talked to her for about 45 seconds.
“We shook hands. Then, I left. … That’s all I know.”
Irvin told the Dallas Morning News that he couldn't "really recall the conversation" with the woman, but described it as "friendly," adding that he was "totally perplexed" by the situation. The Hall of Famer said there is video footage from the hotel lobby encounter but he hasn't personally viewed it.
Irvin had previously appeared in NFL Network's coverage of the annual Super Bowl Opening Night ceremony on Monday (February 6) before being approached by NFL Media officials regarding the incident off-air. A Glendale Police Department spokesperson and officials from other local police agencies said they weren't unaware of any reported incident involving Irvin, who said there "absolutely was no sexual wrongdoing" during the encounter.
Irvin also makes appearances on ESPN and is scheduled to be a guest on First Take alongside hosts Molly Qerim and Stephen A. Smith on Friday (February 10), though an ESPN spokesperson declined to confirm whether Irvin was still planned to appear.