Rees-Zammit lands NFL contract with Chiefs

2 weeks ago 20

Former Wales rugby star Louis Rees-Zammit has joined back-to-back Super Bowl champions the Kansas City Chiefs.

The 23-year-old drew interest from several NFL franchises, and also had meetings with the New York Jets, Cleveland Browns and Denver Broncos.

Rees-Zammit, who was part of the 2024 international player pathway (IPP), has targeted a hybrid role playing at both wide receiver and running back.

Rees-Zammit's next task will be to try to earn a regular-season roster spot.

After quitting Welsh rugby on the eve of this year's Six Nations tournament, Rees-Zammit announced he intended to pursue a career in the NFL in America.

He was one of 16 players to take part in the 2024 IPP, a 10-week crash course designed to teach the required skills to succeed in the NFL.

The ex-Gloucester player - who has won 32 caps for Wales, scoring 14 tries - showcased his skills at University of South Florida's Pro Day earlier this month, with scouts from all 32 NFL teams in attendance.

While he did not test at an extremely high level in all metrics, his pace was impressive and up to the standard of NFL wide receivers.

Now with the Chiefs, Rees-Zammit will be competing with the rest of the off-season squad to earn a place on Kansas City's final 53-man roster for the 2024 season, which begins in September.

If he does not make it, Rees-Zammit is likely to spend his first season on Kansas City's practice squad.

This year, for the first time, all 32 NFL franchises will be given an additional place in their practice squads specifically for players who have come through the IPP.

Teams who have an IPP player on the practice squad will also be allowed to promote the player to the final active 53-man squad without taking up a space, up to three times during the season.

As well as the hybrid role Rees-Zammit has talked about wanting to play, in the short term he may have a greater chance of being utilised as a kick returner.

NFL rule changes have been implemented to encourage teams to return a greater number of kick-offs, an area where the Chiefs could look to use him.

He has previously said he "would love" to return kicks on special teams, and his size, strength, speed and agility are attributes teams look for at the position.

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