Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said it might be all but impossible for someone to make the leap back to football after a long hiatus but that if anyone could pull it off it might be Nate Robinson.
The feat former UW star Nate Robinson is attempting to pull off — making it in the NFL after having not played football since 2002 — is “all but impossible,’’ Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said Tuesday.
But after watching Robinson in action Monday, Carroll also said that “if anybody could, it might be Nate. He’s that versatile of an athlete and that great a competitor.’’
Robinson, 32, had a tryout with the Seahawks on Monday as he attempts to try to find a spot in the NFL after a lengthy NBA career.
The Rainier Beach grad last played football at the University of Washington in 2002 before switching to basketball fulltime. He played in the NBA from 2005 through last fall before he was released by New Orleans. He announced in March that he would like to give football a shot and the Seahawks brought him in to take a look Monday.
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Carroll said that Robinson “looked really quick, caught the ball really well’’ during his tryout.
But Carroll indicated a signing of Robinson is a long way off, if it were to ever happen.
“He’s got a lot of work to do,’’ Carroll said. “He’s getting ready for whatever comes next for him and he’s trying to figure out what he’s going to do, whether it’s going to be in the NBA or overseas playing or whatever. Football is an option he wants to investigate. He’s a great kid. I’ve known him for a long time since way back when (Carroll tried to recruit Robinson as a football player at USC) and always loved the kid and excited to give him a chance to see where this all fits together with him and we’ll find out down the road.’’
Asked how hard it would be for someone to try to play football after sitting out for more than a decade, Carroll said “I think it’s all but impossible. It’s as hard as it could possibly get. And he’s 32, as well. So it would be, I don’t know if anybody could do it. But if anybody could it might be Nate. He’s that versatile of an athlete and that great a competitor.’’
Carroll would not confirm what position the Seahawks viewed Robinson but it has been reported he worked out as a defensive back.
Robinson started six games at cornerback for UW in 2002 before deciding to play basketball.
Carroll said he thought Robinson could have played both defensive back and receiver had he stuck with football.
“He was such a phenomenal basketball player, he had to go that way,’’ Carroll said. “Football was kind of his first sport, he would tell you. But obviously basketball has been a great avenue for him to follow.’’