Lauren Silberman will become the first woman to receive an NFL tryout this weekend when she kicks in front of scouts at the NFL Regional Combine at New York Jets’ training facility on Sunday.
Silberman, 28, hopes to show off her 60-yard field goals to scouts.
“I am working hard to prepare but I am also realistic about my chances,” she told the Associated Press. “I hope my willingness to put myself out there inspires others to seize opportunities and challenges. The support from around the world has been so heartening.”
She said her “family and friends seem to be getting a kick out of this.”
The Regional Combine is described as the “sports version of a TV reality show, where each hit and tackle can wow a scout and move a player on to the next round. Only instead of a recording contract, it’s an NFL one.” Those who were not invited to the main Combine often try to go to the Regional Combine to impress NFL scouts.
Silberman said “she wanted to use the weekend as an opportunity to promote greater diversity in football,” though she will also get plenty of publicity from it.
Female college players such as Katie Hnida from New Mexico in 2003 have been kickers and many believe if a female ever played in the NFL, it would be at the kicker position.
Silberman is already being compared to NASCAR driver Danica Patrick, but football is different from NASCAR. A female kicker, on a botched snap for example, may be put in a position where a male football player would have to tackle her. On kickoff returns, a male player may have to block her. These are some of the reasons why some are against females playing football on the same field as men.
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