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Hunt tests pave way to NFL

COMMENT PRINT ARTICLE
PHOTO: Scanpix
PHOTO: Scanpix

«We have this guy here who weighs 125 kg and runs 40 yards at 4.6 seconds. I can’t get it into my head. How on earth did he pull that off?» said Scott Pioli, Kansas City Chiefs’ last season head manager to a journalist asking who surprised him most at tests. «At university, he blocked 17 kicks, got nicknamed Eastern Bloc.» Program host Scott Hanson shared Pioli’s excitement: «If Hunt turns pro, he’s gonna get huge ad contracts.»

«A major weight fell off my shoulders,» tweeted the Estonian after tests.

At tests, Mr Hunt made a 40 yard dash with 4 4.60 seconds. In standing long jump, Mr Hunt landed at 121 inches i.e. 3 metres and 7 centimetres. In height jump, where one jumps straight into the air and height with up-stretched arm is subtracted from result, Mr Hunt rose to 43.5 inches or 87.6 centimetres. The day before yesterday, Mr Hunt excelled in bench push, getting a 102 kg bar to straight arms for 38 times – this year’s best for defenders.

«I felt free and good, not bad at all. The tests are not as complicated, technically, as some imagine,» Mr Hunt told the league website afterwards.

According to NBC Sports, Mr Hunt was one of the most memorable men in the tests. «Among the bright sights this was Margus Hunt, only four years into the game,» said expert Curtis Crabtree. «In all probability, the Estonian will be drafted in 2nd round, but maybe he raised his stakes even higher. His playing is still rough, but, with his excellent physical abilities, no doubt he’s very attractive for clubs.»

The expert compared Mr Hunt with the current NFL player Jason Pierre-Paul. «He also was quite rough, coming to the league in 2010. Yet, today, he’s one of the best in his position. If Hunt keeps developing, he might be a surprise star,» added Mr Crabtree.

Mr Hunt’s strength is his weight, speed and power, topping his position in every count. However, he also has weaknesses, mainly lack of experience and understanding of the game. And he’s already 26 – many years senior to most in the drafts.

«He was the most talked about, after tests,» said NFL specialist Daniel Jeremiah. «His bench push made many a head turn. Then the 40 yard dash and mighty vertical jump. He’s very rough in the game, but thanks to physical abilities, he’s probably going to get picket at the end of round 2.»

Thanks to excellent test results, Mr Hunt has gotten the eye of a number of clubs, including the recent champion Baltimore Ravens. «I had an official meeting with Ravens’ representatives,» said Mr Hunt via Baltimore Sun. «I’d gladly play in Baltimore, they have a large East-European community.»

Commentators at US web portals like Mr Hunt a lot. «Come to us, big boy!» says a Seattle Hawks fan. «Incredible athlete! Hunt would fit Ravens just fine,» says a Baltimore Ravens’ supporter.

At the NFL website, Mr Hunt is currently graded at 82.4 points, signifying a place among third-ranking players.The first group (95–100) includes the top players counted the draft’s first choice, the second group (85–94) meaning those who, according to experts, get chosen for draft in 1st round. Mr Hunt, then, is among the top doers in group three (70–84) probably picked in 2nd or 3rd rounds. «A high quality reliable player, able to immediately make an impact in the team. Probably headed to be a starting lineup player,» says his profile description.

The NFL draft starts on April 25th with first round of selection. The second and third rounds came the day after.

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