OT: REES-ZAMMIT SIGNS NFL CONTRACT

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OT: REES-ZAMMIT SIGNS NFL CONTRACT

Postby Sven » Fri Mar 29, 2024 6:38 pm

Former Wales rugby star Louis Rees-Zammit is signing with the Kansas City Chiefs as he continues his bid to secure an unlikely future in the NFL.

Rees-Zammit will join up with the back-to-back reigning Super Bowl champions this offseason after spending 10 weeks training in Florida as part of the league's International Player Pathway programme.

His opportunity at Arrowhead comes just three months after the former Gloucester winger announced his decision to step away from rugby and pursue football on the eve of the Six Nations.

The 23-year-old showcased his physical attributes in front of NFL scouts at a Pro Day last Wednesday, logging a 4.43 in the 40-yard dash that would have ranked fifth among running back prospects and tied-10th among wide receiver prospects at this year's NFL Combine

He has since visited multiple teams including the New York Jets, Cleveland Browns and Denver Broncos, but will now continue to hone his craft with Andy Reid's Chiefs.

The International Player Pathway programme, previously known as NFL Undiscovered, began in 2016 and was launched in aid of providing athletes around the world with the opportunity to earn a place on an NFL roster, with former England rugby sevens player Alex Jenkins, former Worcester and Harlequins lock Christian Scotland-Williamson and Racing 92 wing Christian Wade among the rugby players to attempt the transition.

Rees-Zammit will now link up with the Chiefs to continue his development over the coming months, with the team permitted to begin its offseason workout programmes from April 15.

It marks the first time that teams will be allowed a 17th roster spot on their practice spot specifically designated to an international player, meaning he will not count against the 90-man roster that the Chiefs must chisel down into a final group of 53 by the end of the summer.

The International Player Pathway Program
Training camp in July is set to represent the first real opportunity for the Chiefs to assess Rees-Zammit in pads and contact situations, while preseason in August could offer him his first non-competitive outings as the defending champions gear up for the start of the regular season in September.

Should Rees-Zammit earn a spot on the practice squad, the Chiefs will be able to elevate him to the active roster a maximum of three times during the season.


Where will he play?

Rees-Zammit arrives championed for the blistering speed that lifted him to success within international rugby, but, perhaps contrary to his experiences in rugby, will find himself encountered by defenders capable of matching him and competing for opportunities against some of the quickest players in the nation.

Arguably the most taxing obstacle facing him, though, will be the speed at which he can understand and absorb the complexities of an NFL playbook, which typically contains hundreds of different offensive concepts and play designs.

He has been working out at both running back and wide receiver during his 10-week camp, while his straight line speed has also seen him tipped for potential kick return responsibilities, the latter of which could present an opening in light of the NFL's new hybrid kickoff setup.

In Andy Reid he will have one of the league's most innovative offensive minds with whom to work, not to mention a genius screen-play designer that may well already be drawing up ways of getting Rees-Zammit and his rugby-cultivated power through contract running in space behind a sea of red blockers.

For now, the likely task ahead is locking down that 17th spot on the Chiefs practice squad.

'Rees-Zammit's brave move paying off', says Sky Sports NFL presenter Neil Reynolds...

"I'm delighted for Louis but not surprised he has been picked up by an NFL team so quickly. Louis' progress and growth through the International Player Pathway program has been massive and he has all the tools to be an impact weapon straight away as he heads to the league.

"There was quite the market to secure Louis' services and I'm absolutely fascinated to see how he is developed and used by the Kansas City Chiefs. Head coach Andy Reid loves explosive chess pieces that he can use to great effect and I think Louis will grow further and flourish in Kansas City, especially with a certain Patrick Mahomes at the quarterback position.

"Finally, on a personal level, I'm delighted for Louis. He took a considerable risk walking away from his rugby career and I know how much this means for Louis and for his family. His brave move is, as expected, now paying dividends and I cannot wait to see what he does on the next stages of his NFL journey.
"


Has anybody from the IPP made it?

Philadelphia Eagles left tackle Jordan Mailata remains the most notable success story as a product of the International Player Pathway programme having gone on to assert himself as one of the most dominant players in his position across the league.

The Australian, who comes from a rugby background, joined the programme in January 2018 before being drafted by the Eagles with the 233rd pick in the seventh round of the NFL Draft later that year. He has since established himself as a long-term starter in Philadelphia, earning a four-year $64m contract in September 2021 as reward for his impact and later helping the team reach Super Bowl LVII, where the Eagles were beaten by the Chiefs.


British Seattle Seahawks defensive coordinator Aden Durde said of Rees-Zammit...

"You've really got to give kudos to him to take that fearless step, because a lot of people probably got on him about it. I don't know him as a person but I have to say respect to that. He did a great job at his pro day.

"The way the programme has grown is testament to the players that have been on it before.

"Those players like Efe Obada, Jordan Mailata, Moritz Böhringer, Jakob Johnson, Anthony Dable even, laying the path and showing it's possible is a really cool thing.

"It's just elevated and you've got people in from all over the world consistently coming
."
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OT: REES-ZAMMIT SIGNS NFL CONTRACT

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Re: OT: REES-ZAMMIT SIGNS NFL CONTRACT

Postby Sven » Fri Mar 29, 2024 6:42 pm

Good luck to the lad and I hope he seals a deal at the Chiefs... :clap:

As an NFL 'fan', I follow the Jaguars, but admit he's put himself at the best franchise and coach with which to achieve his 'dream' :ayatollah:
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Re: OT: REES-ZAMMIT SIGNS NFL CONTRACT

Postby keanoswinklepickers » Fri Mar 29, 2024 6:55 pm

Post it on an NFL board.
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Re: OT: REES-ZAMMIT SIGNS NFL CONTRACT

Postby Sven » Fri Mar 29, 2024 7:27 pm

keanoswinklepickers wrote:Post it on an NFL board.

It's of interest to some on here and pre-fixed with 'OT' (Off Topic) and you don't need to get involved, if it's not your bag...

Pity you got involved yet don't have much to say elsewhere after today's football result though...! :roll:
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Re: OT: REES-ZAMMIT SIGNS NFL CONTRACT

Postby Underhill1927 » Fri Mar 29, 2024 7:30 pm

Good luck to him. What an opportunity, and a sad reflection on the state of Welsh rugby.
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Re: OT: REES-ZAMMIT SIGNS NFL CONTRACT

Postby Sven » Fri Mar 29, 2024 7:37 pm

Underhill1927 wrote:Good luck to him. What an opportunity, and a sad reflection on the state of Welsh rugby.

My thinking, too! :ayatollah:
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Re: OT: REES-ZAMMIT SIGNS NFL CONTRACT

Postby pembroke allan » Fri Mar 29, 2024 9:36 pm

All got to do now is prove he can make the 1st team roster otherwise he'll be in reserve roster with chance of playing in 3 games over the season if good enough that is. :D
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Re: OT: REES-ZAMMIT SIGNS NFL CONTRACT

Postby cs_original » Fri Mar 29, 2024 10:25 pm

I suppose it’s win win for LRZ. If it doesn’t come off for him, Welsh rugby is so bad at the moment they’ll have no choice but to welcome him back, but if he does make it then what a life and career for him.
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Re: OT: REES-ZAMMIT SIGNS NFL CONTRACT

Postby pembroke allan » Fri Mar 29, 2024 10:55 pm

cs_original wrote:I suppose it’s win win for LRZ. If it doesn’t come off for him, Welsh rugby is so bad at the moment they’ll have no choice but to welcome him back, but if he does make it then what a life and career for him.



Got 3yr contract with garaunteed salary so doubt be back...
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Re: OT: REES-ZAMMIT SIGNS NFL CONTRACT

Postby keanoswinklepickers » Sat Mar 30, 2024 7:40 am

Chase the egg has a place elsewhere.
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Re: OT: REES-ZAMMIT SIGNS NFL CONTRACT

Postby Tuna Pasta Bake » Sat Mar 30, 2024 10:49 am

Pob lwc LR-Z. Where there's an egg, there's a way, even with helmets! :-)
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Re: OT: REES-ZAMMIT SIGNS NFL CONTRACT

Postby Paul Keevil » Sat Mar 30, 2024 12:44 pm

It's worth bearing in mind that a lot of kansas city players are on around £1m per year.

That's on par with a Championship level footballer £20k per week

https://www.spotrac.com/nfl/kansas-city-chiefs/cap/
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Re: OT: REES-ZAMMIT SIGNS NFL CONTRACT

Postby MillenniumNova » Sat Mar 30, 2024 3:28 pm

keanoswinklepickers wrote:Chase the egg has a place elsewhere.


You’re so miserable
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Re: OT: REES-ZAMMIT SIGNS NFL CONTRACT

Postby wez1927 » Sat Mar 30, 2024 8:14 pm

Paul Keevil wrote:It's worth bearing in mind that a lot of kansas city players are on around £1m per year.

That's on par with a Championship level footballer £20k per week

https://www.spotrac.com/nfl/kansas-city-chiefs/cap/

Not the position he's going to be playing, if a big if he makes it he will be on 10s of millions a year , even at 1 million a year its still more than his rugby contract
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Re: OT: REES-ZAMMIT SIGNS NFL CONTRACT

Postby TopCat CCFC » Sun Mar 31, 2024 1:04 am

Louis Rees-Zammit handed Kansas City Chiefs squad number with strict NFL rules clear -

Louis Rees-Zammit has been handed his Kansas City Chiefs squad number after signing a three-year deal with the NFL franchise following his switch from rugby union

Former rugby player Louis Rees-Zammit has been given the No. 9 jersey for the Kansas City Chiefs, as he prepares to embark on his NFL career.

NFL rules mean that teams can only give numbers between 0-49 and 80-89 to running backs and wide receivers. Rees-Zammit has now revealed his number, after signing a dream deal with the Chiefs who see him operating as both a running-back and receiver as he looks to make his way in the game.

In rugby, he would usually wear 14 as a winger, or 15 as a full-back, but he's chosen the number 9 shirt - a number he's used to seeing on a scrum half in rugby.

Rees-Zammit has been training to play both positions in the International Player Pathway programme and has impressed many NFL teams - but it was the current Super Bowl champions who signed him for three years.
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