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

There are currently no matches being played
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Sun, 26 June 2016
Canada v Italy 16h00 Toronto
Fri, 01 July 2016
Chiefs v Crusaders 07h35 Hamilton
Brumbies v Reds 09h40 Canberra
EP Kings v Griquas 16h00 Port Elizabeth
Blue Bulls v Boland 17h00 Loftus Versfeld
Sat, 02 July 2016
Jaguares v Blues 22h00 Buenos Aires
Sunwolves v Waratahs 05h15 Tokyo
Hurricanes v Blues 07h35 Wellington
Rebels v Stormers 09h40 Melbourne
Free State Cheetahs v Falcons 10h05 Bloemfontein
Golden Lions v Griffons 12h05 Johannesburg
Cheetahs v Force 13h00 Bloemfontein
Western Province v Eagles 13h00 Newlands
Namibia v Border 13h00 Windhoek
Sharks v Leopards 15h00 Durban
Kings v Highlanders 15h05 Port Elizabeth
Lions v Sharks 17h10 Johannesburg
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