NFL Total Access is a nightly show, headed by MJ Acosta-Ruiz, that provides in-depth access to all 32 teams in the NFL. It gives exclusive access to team facilities and behind-the-scenes footage. It additionally covers news, reports and exclusive interviews with players and coaches.
While NFL Total Access is a trailblazer in the NFL world owing to its format, MJ Acosta-Ruiz is blazing her own trail in becoming the first Afro-Latina woman to become the solo presenter of the show.
MJ Acosta-Ruiz and her journey to the top of NFL Total Access
MJ Acosta-Ruiz is a Dominican-American who grew up in New York and Miami. She went on to become a cheerleader for the Miami Dolphins in the 2012 and 2013 seasons.
After her brief stint as cheerleader, she joined ABC affiliate WPLG-TV in Miami and Fort Lauderdale. In 2016, she moved to Telemundo 20 to cover the San Diego Chargers. Two years later, she left for the NFL Network to cover the Bay Area teams, San Francisco 49ers and Oakland Raiders. In 2020, she became the solo host of NFL Total Access.
She is fluent in both English and Spanish and also contributes to the NFL Mexico & NFL Español channels. Being a barrier-breaker, she also advocates for representation through various organizations such as A Seat at the Table to increase marginalized community participation.
Her journey into the NFL has been equally fascinating. Coming from a Dominician household, MJ Acosta-Ruiz was more of a baseball fan than a football fan, with her family cheering on the New York Yankees. It was after moving to Miami that football piqued her interest. She credits her father, who played basketball at a professional level in the Dominican Republic, for getting her interested in sports.
She joined a dancing team while in Miami and got her first cheerleading spot cheering for the University of Miami. She gradually progressed to the NFL for the Miami Dolphins while she had already begun working as a sports reporter.
MJ Acosta-Ruiz has been battling misconceptions about women with the immense knowledge of the NFL that she has gathered all these years. Growing up, she did not have anybody like her to look up to, so she decided to become that person, inspiring the next generation of presenters.
No wonder MJ Acosta-Ruiz has become such a roaring success with the fans. She will remain a force to be reckoned with in the NFL for years to come.