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  1. #1
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    Jarryd Hayne quits NRL and Parramatta Eels for career in NFL

    Jarryd Hayne is to quit rugby league and attempt to build a career in the NFL.

    The Parramatta Eels star has left the Australia squad for the Four Nations and will head to the US for trials. Hayne had a superb season and was named Dally M winner along with Johnathan Thurston earlier this month.

    “For the past 24 months I’ve been thinking about having a crack in the NFL, and over the last 12 months I’ve been seriously considering it,” said Hayne in a statement on the Eels website. “Today I can officially announce that I will be heading to the United States to pursue an opportunity to play American football. I will be withdrawing from the Kangaroos Four Nations side immediately, and accepting a conditional release from the Eels to make the move overseas.”

    Seattle Seahawks, the Super Bowl champions, are a possible destination for Hayne. He recently returned from a trip to the US city, where he looked at the team’s facilities. His initial training base, however, will be Los Angeles. For the moment, he does not have a club though and hopes to end up on a practice squad, which acts as a back-up to the active team. Practice squads are a common destination for rookies and players learning their trade. Lawrence Okoye, a former Olympic discus thrower for the UK, is currently on the San Francisco 49ers practice squad after attempting to carve out a career in the NFL. Players from the practice squad cannot play in games but can be called up to the active roster due to injuries.

    A typical salary for a practice squad member is around US$100,000, significantly less than the Hayne earns in the NRL. “I am leaving as the game’s highest paid player because I want to chase my dream,” he said. “I’m heading over there as a blank canvas, it is crazy exciting. I am going making this decision now because I want to give it every chance, I won’t play this year because the [NFL] season is already six games old. I am aiming at next year and I’m starting preparations now.”

    Hayne acknowledged it would be difficult to leave the Eels, a club he has played for since he was a teenager. “It hasn’t been an easy decision for me to leave the Eels, the club’s been my home and family since I was 13, and I’ve always been proud to pull on the blue and gold jersey with my team-mates,” said Hayne. “The hardest thing about leaving the club is there’s stability for the first time in a long time, but I know where my heart lies and I’m following that.”

    Hayne also confirmed that if he returns to the NRL it will be with the Eels. “On behalf of the board and Eels members, I wish Jarryd the very best of luck in chasing his NFL dream,” said the club’s chairman, Steve Sharp. “It’s going to be an incredibly tough challenge for him and for someone at the pinnacle of a sport like rugby league, to start from the bottom in another is very brave. Our door is always open for Jarryd to return.”

    Tim Sheens, the Australia coach, was shocked by the news. “You’re kidding me,” Sheens told the Daily Telegraph. “That’s news to me. I’m shocked he didn’t say anything.”

    Hayne will not be the first Australian to attempt a career in the NFL. Former AFL players such as Darren Bennett, Ben Graham and Sav Rocca built successful careers as punters. There are currently two Australians on NFL rosters: Brad Wing, a punter for the Pittsburgh Steelers and Jesse Williams, a defensive tackle for the Seahawks.

    Hayne has indicated he would like to play as a punt or kick returner, which he believes corresponds closely to fullback in rugby league.

    Hayne says “easiest transition” for NFL would be to become a punt returner or kick returner pic.twitter.com/f6iM4mu6Jv

    — Mark Di Stefano (@MarkDiStef) October 15, 2014

    Another option would be tight end – a receiver who also takes on blocking duties, although he may lack the height and bulk for a position in which most players are well over Hayne’s 189cm. Hayden Smith, who was born in Australia but went on to play for the USA in rugby union had a brief career as a tight end for the New York Jets.

    Australia’s most successful NFL players

    Darren Bennett, punter The first Australian to make a significant impact in the NFL. Bennett trod a now familiar path, starting out in Aussie Rules where he played for West Coast Eagles and Melbourne. After going to California on honeymoon he contacted the San Diego Chargers and the strong leg he had developed as an Aussie Rules player helped him win a place on the practice squad as a punter. He went on to play for the Chargers in a remarkably successful nine-year career, making the All Pro team for the league’s best players twice. He was also named to the NFL’s 1990s All Decade Team and is a member of the Chargers’ hall of fame. He currently coaches kickers and punters in California.

    Matt McBriar, punter Played Aussie Rules growing up in Melbourne but, unlike Bennett, never played the sport professionally. Instead, he played punter for the University of Hawaii before carving out a career with the Dallas Cowboys between 2003 and 2011. Like Bennett, he was named to the Pro Bowl twice, and was one of the highest paid punters in the league during his career, making over $1m a year.

    Sav Rocca, punter Rocca played for North Melbourne and Collingwood during a 14-year AFL career, and is 13th in the league’s all-time goalscoring list. In 2003 he switched to the NFL and became the oldest rookie in league history at the age of 33. He played on until the end of last season, with spells at the Philadelphia Eagles and Washington Redskins.

    Jesse Williams, defensive tackle Williams became the first Australian to win a Super Bowl ring, with the Seahawks last season. The win was tempered by the fact that Williams had sat out the season injured. He had hoped to come back for 2014 but another injury ended his hopes of playing this season.

    Jarryd Hayne quits NRL and Parramatta Eels for career in NFL | Sport | theguardian.com

  2. #2
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    Brave call, but more like a gap year I think.

    Dodging tired fatties in the NRL is a lot different to avoiding defensive backs.

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    Dont forget he plays 80 mins in NRL and without body armour or a helmet, Ireckon he will be a great recruit for some NFL camp to have , given they stop for 5 mins every tackle ,he will be fresh as a daisy.
    Dont get me wrong ,I am a Qlder so glad to see him go but the man is a superb athlete.

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    Different game. He plays fullback in League, he is not that quick or mobile (compared to the sprinters running the ball back in American Armoval), so where is he gonna play?

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    A big loss for Aussie Rugby League and I would have loved to see him switch codes to play Union. Could have been a huge success.

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    ^ I suspect he'll be back to League soon enough...

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    He'll make a fine running back, and I wager his agent alone will collect more than 100k per year. But I've never really seen a champ in one code be able to switch at his prime, and become the same champ in another code. I think he's chasing the buck.
    probes Aliens

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bettyboo
    so where is he gonna play?
    He has the size to be a running back or a tight end. From what I have red he is fast so should also be able to contribute on special teams returning kicks and punts. That is most likely where he will play first provided he makes a team.

    I commend him for following his dream, but football is a complex game. It is a craft that most players spend their entire lives honing so the odds are stacked against him.

    I think Scott Harding who is playing college football right now for the University of Hawaii will have a better chance of making it in the NFL.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by bsnub
    He has the size to be a running back or a tight end. From what I have red he is fast so should also be able to contribute on special teams returning kicks and punts.
    He's not that fast, and he doesn't have twinkle toes either. He's not that big either. He has very good all round skills in league, where perhaps his biggest talent is positioning (especially in defence) which will offer him sweet FA when he switches codes...

    Quote Originally Posted by bsnub
    the odds are stacked against him.
    Agreed.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bettyboo
    He's not that fast
    He is fast he runs a 4.38 40. That is fast in any book.


    Quote Originally Posted by Bettyboo
    He's not that big either.
    When did 100 kilo stop being big?

    I am reading more here in the states. It seems as though the Eels made a visit to the Seattle Seahawks camp not long ago and that we are first in line.

    Would Seahawks be a team of interest for Australian rugby star Jarryd Hayne? | Seahawks Blog | Seattle Times

    http://www.foxsports.com.au/nrl/jarr...d90666c396d5ff

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    ^ you will see, Snubby...

    He is a very good League player, but I cannot see that he has the talents for AF.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Necron99 View Post
    Brave call, but more like a gap year I think.

    Dodging tired fatties in the NRL is a lot different to avoiding defensive backs.
    And a much greater chance for serious debilitating injury as well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bettyboo View Post
    ^ you will see, Snubby...

    He is a very good League player, but I cannot see that he has the talents for AF.
    He's been practicing forward passing for years.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Necron99
    He's been practicing forward passing for years.
    You're still bitter about the SofO series...


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    Quote Originally Posted by Bettyboo
    He's not that fast, and he doesn't have twinkle toes either.


    Betty, Betty, Betty..............Take a look at this and reconsider your assessment.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Bettyboo
    He is a very good League player, but I cannot see that he has the talents for AF.
    Fair enough but we will soon see. I personally think he will be at least a two year project if he can work out at all.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bsnub
    From what I have red he is fast so should also be able to contribute on special teams returning kicks and punts.
    I think so as well...he has less runners to beat in NFL
    Quote Originally Posted by Bettyboo
    He's not that fast, and he doesn't have twinkle toes either. He's not that big either.
    I am willing to be you have never ever seen him play.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bsnub
    I commend him for following his dream, but football is a complex game.
    me too, and although I agree that NFL is a complex game there has been cross pollination from NFL to league since Jack Gibson's day, he won't go in knowing absolutely nothing...more like a rugby union forward changing to rugby league

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Loy Toy View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Bettyboo
    He's not that fast, and he doesn't have twinkle toes either.


    Betty, Betty, Betty..............Take a look at this and reconsider your assessment.

    Nice video. He is explosive, fast and has some nice juke moves. This will play well in the NFL. The biggest changes he will have to adjust to is that in the NFL most of the running he will be doing will be head down and mostly head and shoulder contact. He will have to keep churning his legs to power through defensive players. It is a common misconception amongst Rugby fans that because American footballers wear shoulder pads and helmets that they are pussies. The reality is that those "pads" become weapons.
    Last edited by bsnub; 15-10-2014 at 05:05 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Loy Toy
    Betty, Betty, Betty..............Take a look at this and reconsider your assessment.
    LT, returning a kick in NFL he would need to be near olympic standards... Even running backs are as fast as League wingers... He is a good mix of power and speed for League, but AFL is a different sport.



    These fellas are fast and balanced in a way that a League player just doesn't need to be... Different game...
    How do I post these pictures???

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    Wouldn't mind betting he is taking a forced sabbatical because he got the nod he had failed a drug test!

    Just a guess mind you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Bayliss
    I am willing to be you have never ever seen him play.
    1) I've seen him play quite a few rimes on TV. 2) I used to be quite a bit quicker than him, back in the day...

    I'm not doubting his League skills, just saying that AF is very very different. Take the 3 quickest runners from any top tier AFL teams and they are close to olympic 100 metre standard. League has very few players with similar speed, and haynes is not one of them...

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    At Melbourne Storm we have a bit of a flyer Koroibete, you might want to check his times Betty
    He would give anyone in AFL wind burn.

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    Quote Originally Posted by crocman View Post
    At Melbourne Storm we have a bit of a flyer Koroibete, you might want to check his times Betty
    He would give anyone in AFL wind burn.
    10.75 for 100m; might've beaten him meself on a good day (if he had an injury... ) - it's just not that fast...

    For a big fella, with power, and balance, on a rugby field, it is very fast, I agree.

    Years ago, many years ago, I used to turn up for races and every fuker would be spouting off the times they'd been doing that week, always half a second or more quicker than I'd ever done - rarely did any of these chaps get within 5 metres of me, and I was not fast... Thus, I just don't believe the times many folks spout out because from experience, on a football field and rugby field (not often), I've never had a player get close to me, and I wasn't particularly fast - never went under 11 seconds for 100m.

    Haynes looks like a 12+ second 100 metre man for me (on grass); no doubt he claims to run it on 9.8...

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    Here's a link, the numbers look like guesswork and bollox to me, but it gives an idea.

    How does Jarryd Hayne compare to NFL star? | Stuff.co.nz

    I can tell you now that he does NOT run 100m in 11.2, even on the fastest track surface...

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