Sevens flyer lured to Gridiron

Fri, 27 Dec 2013 11:11
Large carlin isles

Carlin Isles, a 24-year-old United States Sevens wing, has signed a practice squad receiver contract with the NFL's Detroit Lions.

Carlin Isles, a 24-year-old United States Sevens wing touted as the fastest man in Rugby Union, has signed a practice squad receiver contract with the NFL's Detroit Lions.

The Lions, eliminated from American football play-off contention last Sunday, have been known for unusual moves in trying to land talent, bringing in a German player last year and Norwegian kicker Havard Rugland earlier this year after seeing him on a YouTube video.

Isles, dubbed the fastest man in Rugby Union by a magazine last year, underwent a tryout session for the Lions on Monday that included running the 40-yard dash in 4.22 seconds.

A spot opened for Isles after the Lions promoted tight end Matt Veldman from the practice squad to the active roster to replace injured Brandon Pettigrew ahead of Detroit's season-ending game Sunday at Minnesota.

"You're looking for athletes," Lions coach Jim Schwartz said.

"It hasn't been unusual to see basketball players transition to the NFL. That's not just recently, that goes way back.

"Even track guys like Bob Hayes and Renaldo Nehemiah. An athlete's an athlete. There are skills that you can develop, and if you see something you like then you can work with him."

Isles, whose Ohio hometown of Massillon is a famed US high school gridiron hotbed and near the American Football Hall of Fame, was a sprint star and American football player in college before switching to Rugby Union.

He plays for the Gentlemen of Aspen club team and has 11 caps for the US Sevens squad.

"I'm very happy," Isles said.

"Being in an NFL locker room has been a true blessing for me. It's outstanding and a shocker for me. I would have never thought in my life I would be right here in the NFL."

Other NFL clubs have turned outside the usual US collegiate feeder system for talent this year.

Kenyan-born Daniel Adongo has played two games at linebacker this season for the play-off-bound Indianapolis Colts after playing for South Africa's Southern Kings in Super Rugby last season.

And the San Francisco 49ers have signed England's Lawrence Okoye, an Olympic shot put finalist in London, as a defensive end. He is on injured reserve for the play-off-bound club after a pre-season injury.

AFP

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 26 August 2016
Golden Lions v Boland 15h00 Johannesburg
Pumas v Griquas 17h10 Kimberley
Sat, 27 August 2016
New Zealand v Australia 07h35 Wellington
EP Kings v Western Province 14h00 Port Elizabeth
Sharks v Blue Bulls 16h10 Durban
Argentina v South Africa 19h40 Salta
RESULT SCORE
Sat, 20 August 2016
South Africa v Argentina 30 | 23
Golden Lions v Griquas 24 | 30
Australia v New Zealand 8 | 42
Fri, 19 August 2016
Blue Bulls v EP Kings 49 | 35
Western Province v Free State Cheetahs 25 | 32
Boland v Sharks 20 | 41
Sat, 13 August 2016
Free State Cheetahs v Blue Bulls 43 | 20
Golden Lions v Pumas 68 | 26
Fri, 12 August 2016
Sharks v Griquas 46 | 24
EP Kings v Boland 10 | 28
Sat, 06 August 2016
Boland v Free State Cheetahs 16 | 44
Hurricanes v Lions 20 | 3
Fri, 05 August 2016
Pumas v Sharks 10 | 33
Blue Bulls v Western Province 45 | 26
Sat, 30 July 2016
Lions v Highlanders 42 | 30
SEVENS
MORE LOGS
Pool 00
Team P W D L Pts
Brazil 7s 0 0 0 0 1
Korea Sevens 0 0 0 0 10
Pool 19
Team P W D L Pts
England Sevens 0 0 0 0 19
Pool A
Team P W D L Pts
Fiji Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Samoa Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Scotland Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Canada Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Pool B
Team P W D L Pts
New Zealand Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Australia Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
France Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Japan Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Pool C
Team P W D L Pts
Argentina Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
United States Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Russia Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Pool D
Team P W D L Pts
South Africa Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Kenya Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Portugal Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Pool
Team P W D L Pts
Wales Sevens
Zimbabwe 7s