NFL agent Drew Rosenhaus is known for representing some of the biggest stars in the league, such as Antonio Brown and Rob Gronkowski. But he recently made headlines for a different reason: wrestling with a shark in the ocean.
Rosenhaus posted a video on his Twitter account on June 20, showing him jumping into the water with a snorkel and grabbing the tail of a dusky shark. He was accompanied by his client and Miami Dolphins wide receiver Tyreek Hill, who watched from the boat and declined to join him.
The video quickly went viral and drew criticism from PETA, the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. The organization issued a statement to TMZ, calling Rosenhaus a “wannabe macho man” and condemning his actions.
“Aquatic animals already suffer at the hands of anglers who impale them, yank them out of the water, and gut them or leave them to suffocate, so they don’t need some wannabe macho man yanking on their tails for a few Twitter ‘likes,'” PETA said.
Rosenhaus has not responded to PETA’s statement, but he defended his shark wrestling to USA Today, saying that he was “just having fun” and that he did not harm the shark.
However, shark expert Dr. Chris Lowe told USA Today that Rosenhaus was very lucky that the shark did not bite him. He said that the shark’s behavior indicated that it was either sick or exhausted from being caught and released, and that a healthy shark would have reacted more aggressively.
“When you grab a shark by the tail that way, they can literally do a circle, come back around, and that’s how most fishermen are bit,” Lowe said.
Lowe also advised people not to interact with sharks unless they have the expertise and know their condition. He said that sharks are important for the ecosystem and should be respected, not harassed.
“We always say, it’s cool to see them, don’t chase them. Let them come to you if they’re interested,” Lowe said. “And certainly, don’t touch them.”