Now that football season is ending, Hoboken resident Jesse Palmer, who is also a backup quarterback for the New York Giants, will play the field in the ABC television series “The Bachelor.”
For the past couple of years, 25-year-old Palmer has frequented Hoboken hotspots close to his apartment in the uptown Hudson Tea Building – Liberty, City Bistro, the Madison, and Frankie & Johnnie’s.
According to his agent, Peter Schaffer, Palmer moved to Hoboken because other young Giants players live in the area.
Starting in April, when the next installment of “The Bachelor” premieres, Palmer will be easy to spot on TV. As the show unfolds, he will get to choose among a bevy of single women.
Out on the town
According to the staff at Liberty, a Hoboken sports bar on 14th Street, Palmer doesn’t need to go on TV to attract women. “He’s a good-looking guy and a pro athlete,” one barmaid laughed. “Like he needs help getting dates!”
Palmer has been seen at Liberty with a tall brunette, but more often he’s there with the guys. In Palmer’s case, hanging out with the guys means Giants teammates Amani Toomer, Jeremy Shockey, Nick Greisen and David Diehl.
Apparently Palmer is quite charming as well. “He’s a nice guy – an absolute doll. Really polite,” another Liberty staff member said.
Film crew in Hoboken
Extra, the entertainment news show, broke the story about Palmer’s participation in “The Bachelor” on Jan. 22. The crew filmed the segment in and around Palmer’s apartment in the Hudson Tea Building, where other dignitaries including U.S. Sen. Jon Corzine live. One shot showed him walking along the Hudson River waterfront, while another showed him playfully tossing a football in the building’s lobby. (To view the video go to extratv.warnerbros.com/dailynews and scroll through to the listings for the Jan. 22 edition.)
“I meet a lot of girls; it’s very true,” Palmer told “Extra,” “but I really haven’t met one yet that I feel is sincerely interested in Jesse Palmer. This is a chance for me to get on [the show] and find someone really special and important to me. This is my shot.”
‘No. 1 draft pick’
“The Bachelor’s” producers are thrilled to have a professional athlete on the show.
“To have an NFL quarterback as a bachelor is a real coup,” said Mike Fleiss, the show’s executive producer. “If you lined up all the greatest bachelors who have ever applied to be on the show, Jesse would definitely be our No. 1 draft pick.”
But according to Palmer’s agent, Peter Schaffer, his client never actually applied for the show.
“This wasn’t something Jesse sought out,” Schaffer said. “His major focus in life is to be quarterback for the New York Giants.”
However, Schaffer had connections with “The Bachelor.” He’d worked with the producers as the rep for Ryan Sutter – the standout college football player who went on to marry Trista Rehn of The Bachelorette. When Schaffer heard that the producers were interested in putting a professional athlete on the show, he immediately thought of Palmer.
“Unbeknownst to Jesse,” Schaffer said, “I told [the producers], ‘I’ve got the perfect guy – he’s articulate, intelligent and compassionate.'”
The producers of “The Bachelor” agreed. But when Schaffer told his client about the offer, Palmer was shocked, Schaffer said. Eventually Palmer agreed to spend part of the off-season taping the show. (Filming will wrap up before NFL off-season training programs begin this spring.)
Palmer will become a free agent March 1. According to his agent, he hopes to re-sign with the Giants.
A little romance
Palmer told Extra that his parents’ romance helped convince him to give “The Bachelor” a try.
They eloped in San Francisco when they were 24 years old, he said. They’re both 50 years old and they’re still together today. So what is Palmer looking for in a woman? Here is what he told “Extra”: “Someone who’s real cool, real down-to-earth, real fun, wants to get out and travel and see the world, and hopefully wants to have a big family.”
As for the rest of Palmer’s stats, he’s a Toronto native, 6’2″, and 225 pounds. He played college football for Steve Spurrier at the University of Florida.
In his first three years in the NFL, he earned more than $1 million.
Football also runs in the family: Palmer s father, Bill, played in the Canadian Football League, and his brother, Billy, is a tight end at Notre Dame. The entire family – including Palmer s mother, a former model – enjoyed Christmas Eve dinner at Frankie & Johnnie’s in Hoboken. Palmer signed a football for restaurant owner Dino Panos. The same ball had also been signed by gridiron greats Eric Dickerson and Phil Simms, Panos said.