Nate Boyer isn’t your average long snapper. He stands at 5-foot-11 and weighs 220 pounds. Aside from being on the shorter side, he also could be a father to a high school senior. Boyer is 34 years old.
He wants teams to look past his age and rather take a look at the successes he’s achieved during his life.
In a time where off-the-field issues, such as arrests on suspicion of drugs or violence, plague many rookies, teams won’t have to deal with those problems when it comes to Boyer.
Before suiting up as a football player, Boyer spent several years of his life in the military as a Green Beret, serving two tours in Iraq and Afghanistan. The start of his military career spurred from watching the Sept. 11 attacks.
“I was figuring out a lot about myself, I guess,” Boyer said to USA Today Sports. “But it was kind of selfish, I wasn’t really doing anything for anybody else.”
He went undrafted in the NFL Draft and was signed by the Seattle Seahawks as a free agent.
“I didn’t know what to say,” Boyer told ESPN. “It’s so cool.”
But his road wasn’t easy. He hadn’t played a down of football in his life before he stepped on to the University of Texas’ campus. He walked onto the program and soon became one of the best long snappers the university had ever seen. Boyer had more than 500 snaps during his collegiate career, and he executed each one perfectly. He was also tasked with the job of running the flag onto the field before each home game.
“He’s such a hard worker,” Texas coach Charlie Strong said in a statement. “Any time someone represents your country, when you talk about courage, you talk about honor, that’s what it’s all about. I love him so much. He did a great job, he’s an unbelievable leader, and he’s going to be truly missed in our program.”
Despite earning his chance with the Seahawks, making the roster will be difficult. Clint Gresham has been in the NFL for six seasons, and having multiple long snappers on an NFL roster is highly unlikely.
No matter what happens, Boyer is ready to roll with the punches.
“I’m a chameleon,” Boyer said. “I’m able to fit into these different situations and roll with it.”
— Edited by Laura Kubicki