Roundtable: The NBA Meets the NFL (Offense)
In the summer of 2017, both the Owners and the NBPA have the option of opting out of the current CBA in hopes to reach a new deal. If there is indeed a lockout like 2011, in which the first portion of the season is lost, what will NBA players do? Well considering the fact that college basketball players have gone on to play in the NFL and have successful careers, we at OTG began to wonder…
Which current NBA player would have success in a NFL offense?
Romana Bholat – Before he was dishing out dimes in the NBA, Rajon Rondo was throwing touchdown passes for most of his life. Rondo has gone on record saying that he could play in the NFL at the QB position, and there’s no doubt in my mind that he would succeed at it.
The former assists champion is no stranger to finding open teammates and converting a play. His court vision and tenacity would translate well into the NFL and would probably land him a starting position (barring he gained about 30 pounds).
*Photo via Getty Images
Rondo is insanely competitive, and never shy’s away from trash talking. He strikes a resemblance to the San Diego Chargers starting QB, Philip Rivers. Both Rondo and Rivers are also known to be very intelligent and know their respective sports better than most of their competitors.
During his time with the Celtics, Rondo was known to drop the basketball after practices, pick up the pigskin and perfectly sink the ball into the target off of the wall, (instead of off the glass!)
A natural-born leader that thrives with the ball in his hand, Rondo could definitely make it in the NFL as a quarterback. His speed, on-target passing ability, and fiercely competitive nature would have quite a few QB’s watching their back.
Vinnie Rullo – Although it's unlikely that we will ever see LeBron James try to do his best Jordan impression by quitting basketball at the top of his game and pursue a different sport, it would have been pretty cool to witness. In my opinion LeBron James profiles as a stud wide receiver, and we have already gotten a glimpse of what he was like on the football field.
LeBron James has declared that football was his first love before basketball, but due to the fact that football has a higher risk for injury he chose basketball instead. Before this decision James was named an All-State wide receiver at St. Vincent St. Mary High School in Ohio. James caught 61 passes for 1,245 yards and 16 touchdowns as a high school junior.
LeBron James compares to star wide receiver Calvin Johnson who is a rare specimen at 6-5, 236 pounds and is incredibly athletic. James compares to Megatron in a way that they both have a rare combo of speed and size. Johnson's strongest ability is using his athleticism to jump up and catch a ball in traffic.
During the 2011 lockout, LeBron participated in an exhibition flag football game which was Team LeBron versus Team Durant. During the game you got to see just how fast James looked on the football field at the wider receiver position, the highlights of James were shown on SportsCenter.
James love for football hasn't totally disappeared, and he has still hinted at the possibility of him playing in the NFL someday.
Landon Buford – Kobe Bryant in his heyday would be a great wide receiver. He was even discussed as playing the position with the Philadelphia Eagles on the early other side of Terrell Owens, we he was with the team. Kobe Bryant has the body frame along with the pure athletic ability to play outside the numbers. In addition, Kobe Bryant has the intellect to pick up not only the routes combinations as well as the playbook, being that he is a natural competitor at everything he does. Kobe Bryant would be in the film room as much as he has been in the gym perfecting his craft.
*Photo via AP
As for what type of receiver Kobe Bryant will be in today's game, I think he would be AJ Green type of player. They both have that big body frame and are able to track down the ball. At the end of the day it would come down the will to win at by any means necessary and think both Kobe Bryant and AJ Green have those traits.
Max Russo - With his size, strength and athleticism there is no doubt that Blake Griffin, the starting power forward on the Los Angeles Clippers could fit into any NFL team as the starting tight end.
Throughout his career, Griffin has been known for his emphatic dunks and supreme athleticism. It would be an impossible task to ask a defensive player to try and cover the 6-9 Griffin, in the open field. If his play in the open court were any indication, he would be an unstoppable force. His insane jumping ability, mixed with his strength and coordination would make him both a deep threat and a serious short option, with hopes that he would be able to you his size and strength to gain some valuable after the catch yards.
*Photo via Getty Images
Griffin would tower over most defensive players who would guard him. I could see him fitting in nicely in the New England Patriots offense where the tight end is used very heavily. Aside from his on field play, Griffin could also produce some of the games greatest celebrations with his potential to do some serious goal post dunks. He could very well be the games most feared players if he were to ever lace of the cleats and give it a go!