From Rugby to the Olympics to the NFL: Lawrence Okoye

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No Lawrence Okoye has never played competitive football. But that doesn’t mean he might not make it in the sport. I’m sure you remember last year’s rugby to football story, New York Jets tight end Hayden Smith. Smith made the team’s roster and is currently vying for a tight end spot on the lackluster Jets squad. Okoye could very well do the same on his new team, the San Francisco 49ers.

Do you think Lawrence Okoye has what it takes to make in the NFL.
Do you think Lawrence Okoye has what it takes to make in the NFL.

After impressing scouts at a regional combine in Texas a couple months ago, Okoye earned himself a spot on the 49ers roster as an undrafted free agent defensive end. At 6’6″ 300 lb., Okoye ran an impressive 4.78 sec. 40-yard dash matching with remarkable vertical and broad jumps earning himself a chance to catch his dreams.

After participating in the London Olympics this past summer for England in discus Okoye started a new career path pursuing football. When Okoye started throwing a discus at the age 18 he said he wasn’t very good, which gives him the confidence that he can soon become a dominant player in the NFL.

“I had to work really hard to become good at it. It’s going to be the same path in this sport,” Okoye told the San Jose Mercury News. “When I start out, I’m not going to be as good as everybody else. I’m going to look out of place, that’s for sure. But with some work and with time and effort, I know I can catch up and hopefully become a dominant player in the league.”

Okoye also believes that his successful background in rugby, a sport similar to football. Okoye was a star for the London Irish and Wasps Academy as a teenager and when he had the choice between his “first love” rugby or a new dream football, he chose the gridiron.

I give Lawrence Okoye the best of luck in catching his NFL dream and I hope you do it!

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About DJ Eberle 198 Articles
DJ Eberle is easily the largest of the RWU Team; Offensive Tackle Large. In fact, this Albany native played OT for Western New England University until he graduated in 2014. Like Junoir Blaber, he's moonlights on MeetTheMatts.com. His Dad played prop with Johnathan Wicklow Barberie and Matt McCarthy - who also in a MeetTheMatts.com moonlighter. DJ's cross to bear, however, is his love for the Buffalo Bills and Buffalo Sabres. There is hope, though, that his genetic inclination for Rugby, will cure him of that! Follow him on Twitter: @DJEberle66