Dutch RB Chris Smith signs with Germany’s Berlin Rebels
The Berlin Rebels’ devastating ground game has been reinforced with the signing of running back Chris Smith from Holland.
The 6’1″, 205 lb Smith has spent the past two years with the league champion Braunschweig New Yorker Lions and enjoyed a breakout year in 2016 rushing for 1,459 yards and 13 touchdowns placing fifth in rushing in the German Football League. Smith, a Dutch native signed with the Lions in 2015 after a successful career with the Alphen Eagles in Holland.
The Rebels led the league in team rushing in 2016 with 3,176 yards and 39 touchdowns with Lawrence McCoy leading the way rushing for 1,943 yards and 25 touchdowns. McCoy is back and with the fifth leading rusher in the league in Smith to spell him, it doesn’t look like Rebels head coach Kim Kuci has any plans to go away from his powerful ground game.
The 24 year old Smith began his American Football career aged 13 with the Hague Raiders. In 2011 he signed with the Alphen Eagles, helping them win three national championships before leaving for Germany.
American Football International asked Chris about his move to Berlin after winning the German title two years in a row with the Lions.
American Football International: How did you come to sign with the Berlin Rebels?
Chris Smith: I was contacted by head coach Kuci who said he was interested in signing me. I was not really sure if I was going to play in the GFL for another year, because I had other ambitions besides just playing football.
AFI: Why transfer from Braunschweig to Berlin?
Smith: Especially after everything I was able to accomplish with the New Yorker Lions, I thought it was time to think about my future and Berlin made it possible for me to do both.
AFI: What are you looking forward to about playing in Berlin?
Smith: I always thought Berlin was a very beautiful, fun and historically rich city. I look forward to teaming up with one of the leagues top rushers or as you guys called it one of the baddest backs. Stats don’t lie. The Rebels love to run the ball and so do I. So I’m very excited about that.
AFI: Any predictions for the 2017 GFL season?
Smith: I don’t like to predict stuff, but I like to work hard and win games. So I’ll do everything in my power to do just that coming this season.
AFI: Would you play in Holland again?
Smith: As far as me ever playing in Holland again is definitely not out of the question. Seeing as how the sport is also growing in my own country.
AFI: Who is your favorite NFL player?
Smith: I have to say my favorite NFL player now is Ezekiel Elliot but there’s always place in my heart for Adrian Peterson.
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