Could U.S. women’s national soccer team captain Carli Lloyd kick for a professional NFL team? That’s been the question on the internet’s mind ever since the three-time World Cup winner banged home a 55-yard field goal at a joint practice between the Ravens and Eagles last week.
Video of the kick — right down the pipe — went viral and resulted in Lloyd receiving offers from at least two NFL teams to potentially kick in their preseason games on Thursday.
Unfortunately, Lloyd was busy; the USWNT is playing a friendly against Portugal at the Eagles‘ Lincoln Financial Field on Thursday. Soccer, her day job, takes precedent. Lloyd told NFL Network’s Lindsay Rhodes on NFL Total Access on Wednesday, though, that had she not been occupied, she “potentially, probably would’ve entertained the idea” of kicking in an NFL preseason game.
“Pretty serious,” Lloyd said of the offers from the anonymous organizations. “Like I said, I have a game this Thursday, which I happen to be playing in Philadelphia. It’s not something I would’ve passed up. First and foremost, I am a soccer player. But it’s been crazy. A casual day, me just having some fun, being competitive and kicking field goals went to being the most talked-about news around the globe. It’s just crazy how all of that works.”
The reaction to Lloyd’s kick and to reports of NFL offers was swift and predictable. Some people thought giving the two-time FIFA Player of the Year and launcher of this beauty a shot at kicking in an NFL game was an interesting idea. Others were not so high on the concept, citing Lloyd’s gender, size and inexperience in the sport.
Lloyd says she’s well aware of the obstacles that come with placekicking in the NFL.
“Look, there’s no denying that. I know that there’s some challenges involved with this and I know that there’s probably some players and people and everybody around the globe thinking this is the craziest thing,” Lloyd told Rhodes. “But then I also see it from the one perspective of maybe this is kind of something that’s going to break down some barriers and give people, women especially, the confidence to know that maybe they can be a part of any NFL team as a kicker.
“I mean, I’m not trying to be a running back or a quarterback; that would be an epic fail. But I do know that I could kick a ball pretty well and I pride myself in my technique and really it’s all about getting it up and over. I know that there’s loads of people that are saying, you know, big men coming at you.
“I don’t know. I’d have to seriously go out to the field. Helmet, pads, two-step, really get the technique down, really practice it and then kind of see from there if it’s possible.”
So is the 37-year-old truly going to try out for an NFL roster down the road?
“There’s actually a lot of people out there who are rooting for me and who are wanting me to try to do it,” Lloyd said. “I’ve had other girls that have played for their youth teams or high school teams as a kicker and I’ve gotten messages saying that I’ve given them the confidence to go for it even more. That’s kind of the message that you want to hear. Obviously, there’s challenges with that, playing in a male-dominated sports. No other female has ever done this on the professional stage, so I know there are a lot of challenges and I get that.
“But we live in a different time in this world. I think anything is possible. I think somebody’s got to be the first one, right?”