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Eddie Jackson and BBQ

Eddie Jackson (Photo: Courtesy Food Network)

Eddie Jackson (Photo: Courtesy Food Network)

Eddie Jackson’s Still Primetime With His New Series ‘BBQ Blitz’

From football to food trucks, life after the NFL takes different turns for different athletes. For Eddie Jackson, it’s taken him back to primetime on the Food Network for his new six-episode series BBQ Blitz, which debuted in early October. The show finds Jackson traveling the country to pit local BBQ bosses against each other.

Jackson first joined the food world as a private chef, food truck owner and personal trainer. He proved to be the ultimate culinary champion during Food Network Star, known for his charismatic personality, charm under pressure and spectacular cooking skills. His former fame as an NFL star didn’t hurt either.

His take on food combines his southern background with his passion for rich and bold flavors, which consistently distinguished him with the viewers and judges. Jackson grew up in Texas and owns a Caribbean grill-inspired food truck and gym in the Houston area, where he currently resides.

Here’s our exclusive Q&A with the former football star and forever foodie:

Man Cave Daily: What’s life been like since you retired from football?

Eddie Jackson: It’s been a while since I retired from the NFL, but since then it’s been all about food with me. I’ve always been into cooking and food since I was child and once I left the game, I realized that I had the love for food and the ability to cook to take it to another level.

MCD: What do you miss most about football?

EJ: By far I miss the camaraderie. There’s nothing like going into battle with your boys. You train for weeks together, so you naturally become close and then going into battle and getting a victory is priceless.

MCD: Tell me about your love for food–where did it start?

EJ: My love for food started at a very young age. I can remember helping my grandmother in the kitchen making biscuits. And then later my dad teaching me the ins and outs of the grill on our little apartment patio. I love creating unique dishes on the grill.

MCD: Describe your perfect tailgate–the menu, the drinks, the music, etc?

EJ: The perfect tailgate would have one-hander foods like wings and sliders–because you need a free hand for cold beers! Each person at the tailgate should come up with four-5 songs, then combine them to create the perfect tailgate playlist.

MCD: With all the great cities you’re visiting for BBQ Blitz–what do you look for in BBQ? Is there a certain ingredient that stands out, do you like it spicy?

EJ: I’ve visited some amazing cites for BBQ Blitz and what I’m most interested in is creativity. BBQ-ing is not just baby back ribs or pulled pork–I’m looking for something so unique that viewers can hopefully get inspired to try something new when they crank up the grills and smokers. Grilling is the earliest form of cooking–you just have to be willing to step outside the box. I’m a sucker for spice. I’m a Texan and we like it spicy. You can always win me over with a nice kick of heat.

MCD: Tell me about your food truck in Houston?

EJ: My food truck is called Caribbean Grill by Fit Chef. We put a Caribbean twist on barbecue and grilling–like ginger pork tacos or rum glazed ribs. I spent a lot of time in south Florida while playing for the Dolphins, so I wanted to bring some of that flare with me to Texas. I focus on doing events with my truck, but you can find it parked behind my gym Fit Chef Studios during the week. We do healthy lunch options as well as make fresh juices.

MCD: Lastly, any bold Super Bowl predictions?

EJ: Hmmmmm…I’m predicting the Pats to win it all again. Brady is playing with a vengeance!

This article originally ran on CBS Man Cave Daily. Click here to see the original article.