NFL International Showcase: UK Talents Held Their Own To Start The 2018 NFL Season

UK Players Ready To Take On The NFL

The NFL International Player Pathway program was established to introduce American style football to promising foreign-born talents. Potential players are supposed to be on a team’s practice squad for a season to adapt to the culture of the League.

One standout, however, has not only shown the platform’s worth, it has also shown that talent wins above all else, including procedures.

“Everyone in the international program, everybody that has helped me and created a platform for people like me to be here – this has changed my life. But I know that this is just the beginning,” voiced Carolina Panthers defensive end Efe Obada according to

Obada’s athletic ability caught the attention of the Dallas Cowboys in 2015, but he wound up bouncing around the League.


Efe Obada/Google Images


However, last season the IPP program got Obada grounded with the Panthers as he had to stay on the practice squad for a season before he could earn his way onto the team this year.

After finishing strong at training camp and in the preseason, Obada was surprised to make the 53-man active roster since getting cut was his norm.

“Walking in and getting released is what I’m used to,” voiced Obada. “I was walking in and making eye contact with everyone. No one spoke to me. I didn’t say anything to nobody. I made it to my locker and they still hadn’t stopped me or said anything.”

“Coach Rivera eventually came over to me and I was like, ‘Is it real?’”

“It hasn’t set in. I don’t even know. I’m grateful,” the Nigerian continued. “You know when you really want something and you get it and you’re like, ‘Oh my goodness. Like, what?’”

“I’m so happy. I’m going to enjoy this. I’ve been working very hard just to feel this.”

To follow suit, New Orleans Saints defensive end Alex Jenkins, Tampa Bay Buccaneers linebacker Eric Nzeocha and Atlanta Falcons tight end Alex Gray successfully earned a spot on their respective teams from a year ago. The NFC South was the pilot division for the NFL International Player Pathway program last season. Jenkins, Nzeocha and Gray landed spots on the practice squads.

“Last year was exciting and special. Being a part of this (IPP) is great and my experience with the team (Falcons) has been great as well,” said Gray, when he attended the NFL Regional Combine Invitational to give support to new players. “I learned so much…this game is amazing, but this year, I’m on my own. This year will be exciting too and I’m ready to earn my spot and play some football.”

At some point this season, Gray and the gang should see some action on the field as their talents will provide them an opportunity.


Jordan Mailata/


This year, the AFC North is the host division, but offensive tackle Jordan Mailata will not need it.

Mailata showed up in Tampa, Florida for the NFL Regional Combine Invitational in March. His raw talent commanded attention around the League, and the Philadelphia Eagles swooped in and drafted Mailata in the seventh-round (233rd-overall).

Mailata was mowing defenders over during the preseason demonstrating that he is ready now.

“He’s (Mailata) huge, obviously, but he’s also explosive out of the blocks and agile for a man his size,” stated Mailata’s former rugby coach Michael Maguire according to the Wichita Eagle. “Whereas the repeat efforts required in rugby league weren’t suited to a bloke of his genetics, the explosiveness needed in the NFL definitely is.”

“Short bursts of maximum effort. That’s a great match for him.”

With his first crack at playing American style football, Mailata is humbled and has an appreciation of the game and the journey of getting to the game’s highest level.

“I was quite lucky when I reached the crossroad in my life, the NFL pathway reached out to me as another avenue to pursue. That’s what it came down to, said Mailata.”

“I guess it’s every American football player’s dream to be part of an NFL team, and I’m quite lucky to be living my own dreams and theirs.”

Tight ends Moritz Bohringer (Cincinnati Bengals) and Christian Scotland-Williamson (Pittsburgh Steelers), full back Christopher Ezeala (Baltimore Ravens) and defensive back Tigie Sankoh (Cleveland Browns) are the next gems from the UK to push for success in the NFL.


Tigie Sankoh/


Bohringer was drafted by the Minnesota Vikings in the sixth-round (180th-overall) in the 2016 NFL Draft. The 6-4, 227-pound tight end was released by the Vikings last season prior to the 53-man roster that was established. He looked polished during his workout in Tampa. In the preseason, he caught a pass for four yards in Week Four against the Indianapolis Colts.

Scotland-Williamson has good balance, control, decent hands and displayed his skill set during training camp and the preseason. The 6-9, 274-pound talent caught a five-yard pass against the Eagles in Week One.

Ezeala experienced some limited time on the field for the Ravens, while the game is coming along for Sankoh as he recorded two tackles during the preseason.

One of the Shield’s goals is to attract more foreign-born players from overseas to the game. Canada is well represented in the NFL with over a hundred players on rosters.

Through the vehicle of the International Player Pathway program, the transition will simply be just a matter of time as the platform expands.


  1. ps4 games

    After exploring a handful of the articles on your web site, I really
    appreciate your technique of writing a blog. I book marked it to my bookmark website list
    and will be checking back soon. Please check out my website as
    well and tell me what you think.

  2. ps4 games

    Hello there, just became alert to your blog through Google, and found that
    it is really informative. I’m gonna watch out for brussels.
    I’ll be grateful if you continue this in future.
    Numerous people will be benefited from your writing.

  3. ps4 games

    Hi everybody, here every person is sharing such know-how, thus it’s good to read
    this website, and I used to pay a visit this web site all the time.

  4. ps4 games

    Thank you for some other wonderful post. Where else may just anybody get
    that kind of information in such a perfect approach of writing?
    I have a presentation subsequent week, and I’m at the search for such info.

  5. coconut oil

    Hello there I am so excited I found your site, I really found you by error, while
    I was searching on Bing for something else, Anyways I am here
    now and would just like to say thanks for a fantastic post and a all round exciting blog (I
    also love the theme/design), I don’t have
    time to go through it all at the moment but I have saved it
    and also included your RSS feeds, so when I have time I will be back to read a great deal more, Please do keep up the excellent work.

  6. coconut oil

    The other day, while I was at work, my sister stole my
    apple ipad and tested to see if it can survive a thirty foot drop,
    just so she can be a youtube sensation. My apple ipad is now broken and she has 83 views.
    I know this is completely off topic but I had to share it with someone!


    Hi, I do think this is a great web site. I stumbledupon it 😉
    I may revisit once again since i have bookmarked it.
    Money and freedom is the greatest way to change, may you be rich
    and continue to help others.

  8. asksylphoflight sling tv

    Its such as you learn my mind! You seem to understand so much about
    this, such as you wrote the book in it or something.
    I feel that you simply can do with a few percent to power
    the message home a little bit, however instead of that, that is fantastic blog.
    A fantastic read. I will definitely be back.

  9. sling tv

    Awesome things here. I’m very satisfied to peer your
    post. Thank you a lot and I am having a look forward to contact you.
    Will you please drop me a e-mail?

  10. sling tv

    Oh my goodness! Incredible article dude!
    Thanks, However I am experiencing issues with your RSS. I don’t know why
    I cannot join it. Is there anybody having the same RSS problems?
    Anyone that knows the solution can you kindly respond?

  11. sling tv

    It’s amazing to go to see this web site and reading the views of all friends concerning this article, while I am also keen of getting know-how.

  12. sling tv

    Hello there, You have done an incredible job.
    I will certainly digg it and personally suggest to my friends.
    I am confident they will be benefited from this site.

3 Pings & Trackbacks

  1. Pingback: generic ventolin

  2. Pingback: cialis prices

  3. Pingback: viagra for sale without prescription

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

FOLLOW @lockerreport100 INSTAGRAM