Who Is Sam Ponder? Salary, Net Worth, and Career Timeline of ESPN Star

    With the 2024 NFL Draft kicking off, Sam Ponder will be a part of ESPN's coverage. Here's everything to know about her.

    The 2024 NFL Draft is here, meaning there are three days of action involving all 32 NFL teams trying to make franchise-changing moves.

    It also means ESPN’s coverage is back, as is Sam Ponder. Here’s everything to know about the ESPN star.

    Everything to Know About Sam Ponder

    Born Dec. 11, 1985, Ponder grew up in Phoenix, Ariz., attending Central High School.

    Pinder then attended The King’s College in New York City, where she applied for a hostess job at ESPN Zone, where she met Ben Keeperman, a college football researcher and manager with ABC Sports Radio. Meeting Keeperman eventually led to an internship with the network that turned into a researcher-assistant job.

    Ponder eventually transferred to Liberty University after being offered a job as a sideline reporter for the Liberty Flames’ sports television network.

    After graduating in 2009, Ponder worked for FOX Sports as a sideline reporter for Pac-10 and Big 12 college basketball and football games. She got hired by ESPN’s Longhorn Network as a sideline reporter in 2011, relocating to Austin, Texas.

    Ponder served as a reporter for ABC’s Saturday Night Football with Chris Fowler and Kirk Herbstreit in 2016. However, she became the host of “Sunday NFL Countdown” in 2017, becoming just the third person to hold the position in its 32-year history. She also conducts NFL interviews and features.

    In 2022, Ponder and ESPN agreed to a three-year contract that pays her $3 million over the length of the contract. That contract is when she began to move forward in more NFL Draft coverage. As of 2023, her reported net worth is $16 million.

    In 2012, Ponder married then-Minnesota Vikings quarterback Chris Ponder. Born Samantha Steele, it wasn’t until 2013 that she appeared on broadcasts by her married name.

    KEEP READING: 2024 NFL Draft Big Board

    The two had their first daughter in 2014, their first son in 2017, and their second daughter in 2018.

    Beyond game coverage, Ponder has hosted the ESPY’s “Red Carpet Show,” “BattleBots” on ABC, “The Scripps National Spelling Bee” on ABC, and has made appearances on “The View” and “Jimmy Kimmel Live.”

    All the 2024 NFL Draft resources you need — the draft order, the top QBs, the Top 100 prospects, and the full 2024 Big Board — right at your fingertips at Pro Football Network!

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