Jimmy Graham to join 4-person team intending to row across Arctic Ocean in July 2025

Jimmy Graham, a five-time Pro Bowl tight end known for his love for adventure and being a certified pilot, is taking to the sea.

Graham announced Monday that he will be part of a four-person team intending to row non-stop across the Arctic Ocean in July 2025 for charity. The trip will start at Tromsø, Norway — a town on the northwestern coast of the country that is well above the Arctic Circle — and will end about 1,000 kilometers (approximately 621 miles) due north, in Longyearbyen, Svalbard.

Graham, who will be 38 at the time of the challenge, will serve as the lead navigator for the mission. He'll join former Navy SEAL Andrew Tropp (captain), former Team USA rowing team member Hannah Huppi (project manager) and former rower for Team USA and Team Switzerland John Huppi (equipment manager).

New Orleans Saints tight end Jimmy Graham takes part in the Who Dat chant against the Tennessee Titans.
New Orleans Saints tight end Jimmy Graham takes part in the Who Dat chant against the Tennessee Titans.

The team will row in two-hour shifts for all 24 hours in the day and each member will be sleeping in 90-minute intervals, at a maximum. The expedition will force the athletes to burn around 8,000 calories each day, and, given the location on the globe and the time of the year, they will experience 24 hours of sunlight each day of the trip.

The team will row in a 30-foot, carbon fiber ocean rowing boat, bringing all their supplies on board and rowing completely unsupported.

While the mission will benefit charity, it has also set out performance goals it intends to accomplish. Among them, the team intends to set a Guinness World Record for being the first mixed-gendered team to row the Arctic Ocean, become the first All-American team to row the Arctic Ocean and become the fastest four-person team to row the Arctic Ocean, according to the Ocean Rowing Society. To become the fastest team, the mission must complete its journey quicker than the current record of 15 days, 5 hours, and 32 minutes.

Graham would also become the first Black person to row a polar ocean.

"We aim to showcase the boundless possibilities that arise when one embraces challenges and pushes the limits of human potential," the expedition's mission statement reads. "Through this Arctic expedition, we aspire to instill in young kids the belief that with determination, teamwork, and resilience, they can conquer any obstacle and chart their own course toward extraordinary achievements."

In a social media post asking about his training routine to prepare for the mission, Graham said he'll "cross train a lot with the bike and yoga" and will also "do sea trials and shorter missions with the RX45 (boat) in the gulf and some crossings thru the Bahamas."

Graham played 13 games this past season for the New Orleans Saints on a one-year contract, serving mostly as a reserve. He caught six passes for 39 yards and four touchdowns.

The expedition is partnering with Covenant House, the Jimmy Graham Foundation and Laureus Sport for Good USA.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Jimmy Graham announces bid to make rowing trip across Arctic Ocean