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VIDEO: NFL offers rolling in for Rees-Lightning?

SPOTLIGHT: Wales and British & Irish Lions flyer Louis Rees-Zammit is on the brink of an official NFL offer, after code hopping from Rugby Union to America’s National Football League.

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Rees-Zammit, nicknamed Rees-Lightning because of his speed, ran an unofficial time of 4.44 seconds in the 40-yard dash at the NFL International Player Pathway Pro Day.

That compares favourably with those times set at the 2024 NFL Scouting Combine trials – where a 4.38 dash earned you a top-10 finish.

Texas Wide Receiver Xavier Worthy set a new all-time record of 4.21-second 40-yard dash at the 2024 combine trials.

He beat by 0.01 seconds the record of John Ross and is only the 12th player to have run a sub-4.30 second 40-yard-dash.

The previous 11 comprised of six wide receivers, three cornerbacks and two running backs.

According to a report by Neil Fissler of RugbyPass Rees-Zammit is the subject of a three-way tug-of-war between NFL sides offering him in the region of US$900,000 a year to sign up for their mid-year training squads.

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The 23-year-old Rees-Zammit is on a 10-week crash course to prepare to play NFL as part of the 2024 International Player Pathway.

He received offers before scouts from all 32 NFL franchises watched him in action at an NFL Pro Day on Wednesday.

He caught the eye at the University of South Florida, clocking an impressive 4.44s in the 40-yard dash before impressing with his neat footwork skills in position drills.

Rees-Zammit could be picked up to play either as a running back, wide receiver or even a punt or kick returner on special teams when his crash course finishes at the end of the month.

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He couldn’t have picked a better time to try and crack America. For the first time, NFL franchises have been given an additional place in their practice squads for players who have come through the IPP.

While his 4.44-second 40-yard dash is not among the top times clocked at this year’s combine, it is faster than the average for either a running back or a wide receiver out of this year’s class.

It is also faster than former rugby union to NFL convert Christian Wade, who clocked a 4.53-second dash in 2019.

 

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