Saturday, November 21, 2009

Feature: If They Played in the NFL

While it's true that I'm pretty late (a week and a half) getting this up, it's for good reason. Someone suggested an athlete that I was extremely intrigued by, but didn't know enough about to do a full write up. And considering the hugeness of the sport in the last 2 weeks, it seemed appropriate to go out and research this guy. Without further ado, I give you:

Floyd "Money" Mayweather
Professional Boxer (Welterweight)
5'8" 146 lbs

Position: We'll get to that

Before I go into what position Floyd would play in the NFL, I need to give a bit of a scouting report on him. Boxing isn't what it used to be in America, so a lot of folks might not know much about Mayweather. After watching a couple of fights, here's the skinny on him:

Mayweather is perhaps best known for his hand speed, and rightly so. He delivers a jab with great quickness, and had great accuracy in his punches to go with that speed. He is also a very technically sound defensive boxer, moving his head extremely well, using his hands effectively, and doing this great shoulder roll that causes quick punches to skim harmlessly away from his face. Floyd had pretty good footwork, but he's not Muhammad Ali in that department. If you're into good fundamental boxing with a bit of flash and showmanship, Floyd Mayweather is your guy.

With that out of the way, what to do with a 146 pound guy in the NFL? In a word, nothing. While I'd love to group him with the likes of Darren Sproles and Maurice Jones-Drew as a tough-as-nails little guy running back, there's no evidence of his actual speed. He doesn't train to run, but to close on an opponent quickly. Also, what benefit does world-class hand speed have for a running back? Exactly. So what is his position, hypothetically?

Position: Defensive End (on, like, a Pop Warner/pee wee league)

Take his size out of the equation, and Money's skills translate beautifully to defensive end. He moves his feet well, and explodes out of his stance in the ring, so he could have a very good first step coming off the line. Fast hands? How about working his hands against an elite left tackle, giving him a good release to the quarterback? Mayweather also has insanely good vision when he's up close on an opponent, so you could count on him to always keep his bearings in the chaos at the line of scrimmage, while always having an eye on the quarterback. I would just love to see Floyd Mayweather roll his shoulder and have Ryan Clady's hands slip right off of him, then get that quick strike to knock the ball out of a quarterback's hand. You're with me on this, right? Amazing! I'd play Floyd at right defensive end, as I see him as a better pass rusher than run stopper.

Of course, a 146 pound devensive lineman would get killed in the NFL, but this is purely hypothetical, right? With a unique athlete like Floyd "Money" Mayweather kicking around, it's fun to imagine what could be.

Hate the analysis? More suggestions? Comment! Also, be sure to hit up the new poll, and click some stupid ads while you're here and make me a few bucks!


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