By Chris Dell’Amore
When thinking of all the people who would get absolutely wrecked if they stepped on the grid-iron, not one name stood out more than this one: Manute Bol. Being a big guy in the NBA doesn’t mean you have to be “athletic,” but asking Bol to chew gum and dribble would cause the man to have a mental breakdown. What position could you possibly put this guy at on the football field? Imagining him and his long, uncoordinated strides on the defensive line is too gruesome to even picture. Wide receiver? Please, a 175-lb. cornerback would have more trouble jamming a grandmother at the line of scrimmage. Dare say we put Bol at quarterback? I can’t even imagine the consequences. What comes to mind is the Lawrence Taylor sack on Joe Theismann, but this time, both legs. How about tight end? Picturing Bol having to block the likes of Brian Urlacher or coming across the middle on a post route while Ed Reed lurks in his zone are two situations I wouldn’t want to put even my worst enemies in, let alone a frail 7’7,” 225-lb. target. Should Bol decide to revive his athletic career in the NFL I would be inclined to ask him only one question, would he like Larry Allen to bench press his casket 43 times at the wake?
By Jim Rosen
“Work it Harder, Make it Better, Do it Faster, Makes us Stronger.” The lyrics to Daft Punk’s famous techno song seem to apply especially well to the modern sports era. In an age when even high school athletes are taking steroids in order to gain that extra edge, the prototypical sports body is more necessary than ever. The fantastic thing about different sports, however, is that the ideal body type is different in each game. A quick, tiny player like Martin St. Louis can become a superstar in the NHL. Baseball players, like C.C. Sabathia, can succeed with a big gut and a bigger heart. Basketball players come in all shapes and sizes, as the ability to knock down a jumper supersedes all other aspects of the game. Football, however, seems to be the one sport in which one certainly must be “Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger.” While many athletes excel in their respective sports, it takes a true athlete to stand out as a football player. While you may know him from his role in the Billy Crystal movie, My Giant, others may remember a 7’7″ Romanian behemoth who used to lumber down NBA courts in the late ’90s. Gheorghe Mure?an, whose extreme height might have fit the NBA well, but certainly would have been a horrible NFL player. His lack of speed and the shaky hand-eye coordination that comes from being well over seven feet tall would not have fit well in the NFL, where every aspect of your athletic ability is equally important. Some players are simply made to play one sport and one sport only. Although Mure?an might have been able to find some success in the NBA, the “Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger” mindset of the NFL would not have translated well for the Romanian giant.
By Barry Rothbard
When I think of the prototypical NFL player, I think of jacked linebackers full of rage (Ray Lewis), stud quarterbacks (Tom Brady), savvy cornerbacks (Champ Bailey) and lightning quick tailbacks (Chris Johnson). I think of men (for the most part) that I would not want to invite over for Passover dinner (no matter how many Campbell’s Chunky Soup commercials they may be in). When I think of Adam Morrison and J.J. Redick (co-players of the year in men’s college basketball in 2006), I think of two of the biggest busts in the NBA that are as soft as the other side of the pillow. Both of these men can be classified as stiffs who spend more time waving their towels than running up and down the court. Redick has one skill: he can (or could) shoot a basketball better than most people. In other words, he lacks enough athleticism to play in the NFL. Now, Redick could throw a tight spiral for all I know (and QB is the only position he could possibly play due to his lack of speed), but I’m going to assume he would be knocked out cold when Albert Haynesworth knocks him on his butt. Plus, you can’t wear hair gel in the NFL. Sorry J.J. As for Morrison, anyone who drops to their knees and cries after they lose a basketball game is way too soft for the NFL. Morrison’s body type also bears a scary resemblance to that of Paris Hilton (freakily skinny). This does not lend kindly to taking hits from NFL stars. Morrison’s sketchy, porn star mustache certainly would also not fly in an NFL locker room. While J.J. and Adam might not make the best NFL players, I imagine they’d make a phenomenal foosball tandem.
By Harry Raymond
The problem with this question is almost every MLB, NHL, and NBA player would get killed if they played in the NFL, making it impossible to choose the worst of the lot. I’m pretty sure, slight breezes easily knock over Randy Johnson, Barry Melrose, and Yao Ming. So, take your pick because they would all be scary awful in the NFL.
A question I find far more interesting is which MLB, NHL, or NBA player would make the best NFL athlete? The answer to this question is simple: the perfect NFL linebacker would be New York Knicks guard Nate Robinson. Now, you might be asking “Are you insane? He’s only 5’9″ and you want to make him an NFL linebacker?” First, Robinson is listed at 5’9″ but most agree he’s closer to 5’7″. Second, I would answer your questions with another question: have you ever seen Nate the Great jump? There is no doubt in my mind that he could jump over his own defensive line and his opponents’ offensive line on ever play. He would shatter every NFL sack record in the books.
There is also a serious nickname draught that plagues the NFL today. What happened to the days of Roger “The Dodger” Staubach or William “Refrigerator” Perry? T.O. and Ocho Cinco happened. Kyrpto-Nate Robinson is the only man who could restore NFL nicknames to their former glory. Trust me, despite his lack of height, Nate Robinson would be huge in the NFL.