Three Air Force players get NFL tryouts

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The Air Force may keep its graduating football players from taking NFL jobs, but nothing prevents them from trying to get one.

Via Nicki Jhabvala of the Denver Post, three Air Force Academy players will spend the weekend on a tryout basis at rookie minicamps. Receiver Jalen Robinette will attend the Bills’ rookie minicamp, safety Weston Steelhammer will participate in the Eagles’ rookie minicamp, and linebacker Ryan Watson will audition for a job with the Cardinals. Current Air Force and Department of Defense policy, however, prevents them from avoiding an active-duty obligation by playing pro football.

Agent David Lisko, who represents Robinette, told the Post that he hopes to secure a waiver for Robinette and the rest of the class of 2017, under the argument that the new revised should not apply to players who already were preparing for a shot at a career in the NFL. There’s no indication that the Air Force or the Department of Defense will craft an exception to the new rule requiring two years of service.

For the teams, it makes sense to give them a tire kicking, even if the policy remains what it currently is. In two years, they’ll be available to accept employment in the NFL.

6 responses to “Three Air Force players get NFL tryouts

  1. Bengals fan here…why wouldn’t Marvin or Mike Brown bring one of these guys in for a shot? Instead of constantly trying to save guys that don’t deserve to be saved, maybe they can give a job to a guy that actually can be a role model?

  2. I’m not saying I disagree with the DoD policy. I’m just saying it should affect these guys regardless of their stance. These fellows went to the academy under one impression, and are graduating with a different rule. Who’s to say they wouldn’t have went elsewhere?

  3. I have a daughter at USAFA and although these cadets signed up for service and a commitment afterwards a precedent was set last year by another service academy. The outrage at USAFA was more based on the late notice the Air Force gave the cadets after they already started prepping for their pro day and weren’t clearly told they needed to serve first until the last minute.

  4. Agent David Lisko, who represents Robinette, told the Post that he hopes to secure a waiver for Robinette and the rest of the class of 2017, under the argument that the new revised should not apply to players who already were preparing for a shot at a career in the NFL.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~
    If he is indeed seeking a “waiver” then he will fail. A waiver is requested (in the Air Force) when you cannot comply with a given requirement. These guys are perfectly capable of meeting their agreed upon service commitments. What the agent needs to do is request an exception to established policy, which means you can comply with the requirement but you don’t want to for whatever reason. Either way, his chances of success are minuscule.

    It is not accurate to depict this as a revision or change in policy. The policy has not changed at all. Some previous military academy NFL draftees obtained exceptions to policy. The only thing that has ever mattered is the contract that was signed at the very beginning upon being accepted to a service academy. You will not find any mention of potential NFL draft or sports exceptions anywhere on it.

  5. Man, I hope Weston Steelhammer makes the roster, just so I can order a jersey with STEELHAMMER on the back.

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