Icelandic Viking to Stockholm Mean Machines

When Nikulás Snær Magnússon left Iceland and the only team there, the Reykjavik Einherjarto play football in Sweden for the Stockholm Mean Machines he didn’t realize he would cause such a commotion.

He wasn’t the first American football player to leave the island nation with a population of 300,000 to play in another country. But he is the first to make it in Sweden.

He along with two of his Icelandic teammates tried out for the Mean Machines, but he was the only one of three who was able to stay and play.  Magnússon had been in touch with Stockholm head coach Fredrik Pilbäck over the past year and together with the other two came for a scrimmage earlier this year.

Since then, the 6’4″, 290 lb defensive lineman/linebacker has made his mark. He recorded the first sack of the season for the Mean Machines when he corralled Orebro Black Knights quarterback Corbin Lawler.


“I have been playing American football since 2014 but this will be my first real season as a player. I look forward to getting to know the players and coaches on the Stockholm Mean Machines, and I hope to contribute energy and enthusiasm. I always put high demands on myself, now it’s just getting started.”

Stockholm head coach Fredrik Pilbäck:

“Nikulás is a great guy. Always smiling and full of energy. He brings power and pressure when he plays and he can play all four positions on the defensive line and inside linebacker as well. He makes up for his inexperience with great work ethic and desire.”

Check out his first sack

Roger Kelly is an editor and a writer for AFI. A former PR Director the B.C. Lions of the Canadian Football League for 7 years, he now lives in Sweden writing about and scouting American Football throughout the world.