The Hayne train kept on rolling last night as the wonder from down under put on another impressive display in the San Francisco 49ers’ final preseason game at home to the San Diego Chargers.
It looks like the next stop for this express is the NFL. 49ers head coach, Jim Tomsula, has a few decisions to make before he announces his 53-man roster for the 2015 season, but the former Australian rugby league star, Jarryd Hayne, is doing everything in his 6’2″ frame to guarantee a spot in that team.
His run up the sideline which finished with a shoulder charge that pummeled Chargers CB Lowell Rose has gone viral. Hayne has done much more than just roll players over this preseason. He’s shown speed and agility which has paved the way for some big runs.
He’s no longer just making headlines with our Antipodean friends, he’s become the talk of the NFL.
Last year he was awarded the NRL’s (National Rugby League) player of the year. He was a big deal in his sport and was offered the biggest pay packet his sport had ever seen. But he turned that down to pursue his dream of playing American Football.
“He actually looks like an NFL running back. Looks like he could come play with us tomorrow.”
Although he seems to have made that transition look easy it’s no small feat. It’s a testament to the 27 year old that he’s knuckled down and adapted life in professional football.
Long before they became team mates Reggie Bush predicted a career as a running back for Hayne after he watched tape of the rugby star.
If he’s going to make the team it’s likely that Hayne will be a punt returner. He’s been dodging tackles his whole career and the runs he’s made this preseason look better than most rookies coming out of college.
The skills he’s bringing with him are a breath of fresh air to the sport. Don’t be surprised if the teams competing in this year’s International Series games scout a few of the stars at the Rugby World Cup whilst they’re over here.