Momentum continues to build around the unprecedented idea of veteran U.S. Women’s National Team soccer player Carli Lloyd playing NFL football.
Lloyd attended a Philadelphia Eagles-Baltimore Ravens joint practice last week and gave field goal-kicking a try.
Video of her nailing a 55-yard field goal, albeit in decidedly unrealistic conditions, quickly went viral.
The midfielder’s trainer, James Galanis, said the video led to multiple NFL teams reaching out, with one even offering her the chance to suit up on Thursday for the final game of the preseason.
“She was told [she could] play on Thursday, the NFL game, but she is playing Thursday with the national team, so that was the conflict,” Galanis told Fox Sports, referring to a USWNT friendly match against Portugal that is also set to take place on Thursday.
While it won’t be happening this year, Galanis seemed to indicate to ESPN that Lloyd is seriously considering making an attempt at joining an NFL roster in 2020.
“If she’s going to do this, she’ll do it — she’ll train in the offseason, she’ll get herself ready so that she just doesn’t do it for the sake of doing it,” he told ESPN.
“We’ll try kicking balls with a couple of steps,” he said.
“And if her range is still the same … then that’s an important piece we knocked over because we’ll know that she can kick the ball 55 yards with two steps, the same way an NFL player could,” Galanis added, referring to Lloyd’s approach being twice as long as an NFL kicker’s.
“Once we knock that over, we’ll contact one of the NFL teams and tell them that we’re interested and we’d like to come down and spend some time with their field goal-kicking coaches and let them make some tweaks and fix her technique or adjust her technique. From there, bring in the team, and she can do it live at training in kind of like a realistic situation.”
But how possible do actual NFL players think this scenario is?
Several have spoken out with some major reservations that poke holes in the hype.
Veteran kicker Adam Vinatieri told ESPN’s Ed Werder that a real game would present a very different set of challenges compared to Lloyd’s viral kick.
#Colts PK Adam Vinatieri on Carli Lloyd in NFL: He saw her kick for Eagles and was impressed. “Heck of a kick,’’ he said. But noted there was no snap or rush. He said challenge would be using fewer steps, kicking in under 1.3 seconds, elevating ball quickly over line.
— Ed Werder (@WerderEdESPN) August 27, 2019
Chargers Pro Bowl wide receiver Keenan Allen had a different concern.
“Sound sweet til somebody block the kick and all of a sudden she on defense😂. Would be like the stampede scene in the lion king movie 😂😂,” he wrote on Twitter.
Sound sweet til somebody block the kick and all of a sudden she on defense😂. Would be like the stampede scene in the lion king movie 😂😂 . She do got a boot tho! https://t.co/K8VxnHp6gB
— Keenan Allen (@Keenan13Allen) August 27, 2019
Lloyd is all of 5 feet, 8 inches tall and weighs 140 pounds, so safety could be a very real concern despite the fact that blocked field goals are quite rare.
Chargers teammate Melvin Gordon seemed to agree with Allen.
On my soul lmfaoooooo 😂😂😂
— F L ⚡️ S H (@Melvingordon25) August 27, 2019
Eagles running back Donnel Pumphrey also found the whole idea humorous.
— Donnel Pumphrey Jr. (@Pumphrey6K) August 27, 2019
It seems NFL players don’t love the suggestion that a 37-year-old woman with no football experience could easily do what they have trained their whole lives for.
Who could have guessed?
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