Three English Players To Have Played In The NFL

The popularity of the NFL in the United Kingdom is increasing with every passing year. In total, there have been 13 NFL games played in the UK, with one game played per year until 2012. Since then, there have been multiple games played at various stadiums across the country.

All of these fixtures have been sell-out occasions, and there have been a number British players to have made a name for themselves in the NFL, which can be credited to the esteemed success that the NFL has enjoyed with a British audience. 

Osi Umenyiora

There have only been five British-born players to have won a Super Bowl, and one of those players is Osi Umenyiora. The defensive end enjoyed an excellent eleven-year NFL career, which was made up of spells with the New York Giants and Atlanta Falcons.

He won two Super Bowl championships with the Giants in 2007 and 2011. He also played in the Pro Bowl on two occasions, which came in 2005 and 2007. Umenyiora remains a popular figure among British fans to this day, as he works as an expert during the Super Bowl for the BBC.

Lawrence Tynes

It’s hard to talk about Umenyiora without mentioning Lawrence Tynes. Tynes was an important player in the Giants Super Bowl successes alongside Umenyiora. He remains the only player in NFL history that has kicked two overtime winners in playoff games. 

One of those kicks came during the NFC Championship game, which was enough to secure the Giants passage through to Super Bowl XLVI. Tynes made 190 field goals during his career, and his NFL career spun across 12 years. He ended his career in the NFL with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2013. His presence on the pitch always ensured that his teams were always mentioned among NFL picks for their fixtures throughout the season.

Christian Wade 

If there are two sports with transferable skills, then it is American Football and rugby. One player that has utilised the skills that he acquired in rugby to forge out an American Football career is Christian Wade. The Englishman began his sporting career playing rugby union, and was an esteemed player throughout his career. He was an integral part of the London Wasps team between 2011 and 2018, as he scored 497 points in 165 games. Wade also represented England, but after missing out on a place in the 2019 World Cup squad, he decided to change sports and embarked on a career in the NFL.

Wade was immediately approached by the Buffalo Bills and was signed to the practice squad as a running back. He is yet to make his NFL debut, but he did impress during a pre-season game in 2019 by scoring a 65-yard touchdown. Wade remains with the Bills, but he is currently signed to the practice squad. Wade could be the next English player to make waves in the NFL and could make his debut at some point during the current season.

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