The Story Behind LeBron James Not Playing Football

The Story Behind LeBron James Not Playing Football

Early this evening I was hanging with my wife and I told her I was planning on writing a feature about LeBron James’s decision to not play football. She turned to me and said, “who cares about that?” I told her the 1.7 million who liked his Instagram post do!

Look, you, me and even LeBron James appear to be looking for things to do while in quarantine, how else can you explain his post over the weekend which featured a story about “LeBron James” – the football player.

LeBron as a football player was no joke – during his Junior year in High School, LeBron caught 60 passes for 1200 yards and 16 touchdowns. Not bad for a basketball player playing wide-receiver, or has he always been a wide receiver, playing basketball?

The Instagram post begins with “The #1 football prospect in the state of Ohio probably won’t be playing football much longer. Of course, I’m speaking of LeBron James, the nation’s premier basketball prospect who is a taller, slower version of Randy Moss.”

LeBron Responds

“[My teammates] said if I tried to step on a football field my senior year they would jump(kick my a**) me every day of practice until I had enough!” James wrote. “Think I made a smart decision! Ha! Anyways you LB/CB/S can thank my homies I stayed over in the hoops lane or would have been plenty of highlights ‘Moss’d’ on y’all.”

Clearly his friends got it right as LeBron James is widely regarded as the best basketball player of his era. James has won 3 titles and went to 8 straight NBA finals between 2011 and 2018 for a total of 9 trips to the NBA finals so far.

Excerpt: NFL.com article published by Ralph Warner on May 21, 2018

In the article, Ralph Warner of NFL.com proposes the following questions – what if James had chosen the gridiron instead of the hardwood? Would he still be one of the greatest athletes of all time?

Former Packers safety Mark Murphy, who was a defensive coordinator at St. Vincent-St. Mary while James was playing at the high school, has high praise for the King’s football skills.

“I’ve been around a lot of great receivers,” Murphy told ESPN in 2009. “I tell people that I rate my top receivers — coaching, playing, or watching — as James Lofton, Jerry Rice, Steve Largent, and LeBron James.”

Murphy who played in the NFL for 11-years mostly at strong safety was good enough to get into the Green Bay Packers’ Hall of Fame.

Opinion – LeBron James in The NFL

LeBron has proven over the years that he is one of those rare athletes who can do just about anything. James who probably doesn’t have 4.4 speed could have easily transitioned into a great tight end. At 6′ 9″, 250 pounds he would tower over the 6’4″ Tony Gonzalez who is the greatest statistical tight end of all-time.

So what does Randy Moss think?
“I think LeBron could come in and do better than Antonio Gates,” said Hall-of-Fame receiver Randy Moss in an ESPN.com article written by Tim Graham on July 7th, 2010.

The Bottom Line
I can’t imagine LeBron not being in the NBA, still, I have no doubt that LeBron could have been great in the NFL, and ended up with one of those John Madden talking busts in Canton Ohio.

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