The NFL Draft is nearly upon us, and teams are already planning their rosters for the 2021 campaign.
This month’s draft will give the best youngsters in America the chance to make their name in the NFL, but they still face a long and challenging road for years to come.
With it being one of America’s national sports, it is no surprise to see so many players fail to make the grade. For British players, it is even harder to prove their worth, as most have to miss out on the draft and try to impress in Europe.
Some Brits have made the grade though, and we take a look at some of the best to star in the NFL.
If any British have watched the NFL in the UK, then it is hard to not know who Osi Umenyiora is. He is one of the leading pundits on the BBC’s The NFL Show, and is arguably the best Brit to ever play in the NFL.
The 39-year-old may sound American, but he was born in London and lived in the English capital for seven years. After moving to Nigeria, he then went through the American collegiate system and was drafted by the New York Giants in 2003.
The defensive end enjoyed a 10-year career and ended his time in the NFL as a two-time Super Bowl champion. Umenyiora was named in two Pro Bowl teams and was awarded the New York Giants Ring of Honor.
The New York Giants seem to give Britons a chance, with Lawrence Tynes also part of the same team as Umenyiora. Tynes was the Giants’ kicker for five years, while he also played for the Kansas City Chiefs and Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
He showed great composure in the Super Bowl wins against New England Patriots, and his achievements as a kicker are unrivalled.
The 42-year-old is the only player in NFL history to have two overtime game-winning field goals in the playoffs, and the Scotsman certainly made the most of his opportunity in the NFL.
From two Super Bowl winners to another, with running back Jay Ajayi claiming a Super Bowl ring of his own with the Philadelphia Eagles.
Ajayi was also born in London, and graduated out of Boise State, with Miami Dolphins selecting him in the fifth round of the 2015 draft.
After two years in Miami, he moved to the Eagles where he contributed to their Super Bowl LII success. Sadly, the powerful runner has been plagued with injury throughout his career, and is now without a team at 27.
Defensive end Crawford is still playing in the NFL and is part of the Tennessee Titans roster. The 32-year-old graduated from Penn State college and was selected in the fifth round of the 2012 draft.
He has enjoyed spells with the Oakland Raiders, Dallas Cowboys and Atlanta Falcons, and will be trying to add a Super Bowl ring to his trophy cabinet before he retires.