It’s just gone Week 10 in the NFL and Week 11 in the NCAAF. This week saw an Aussie awarded for his courage, an Aussie breaking an NCAAF record, and an Aussie come so close to defeating an undefeated team.
Jessie Williams Honoured for his Courage
Every person who is drafted to the NFL needs to demonstrate they have an enormous amount of courage. It doesn’t matter what your nationality is or which position you play, only courageous players go above and beyond when playing at the highest level.
That’s why being honoured for your courage by your teammates is such a high accolade.
Jessie William, a.k.a ‘Tha Monstar,’ was born and bred in Brisbane. He then went on to play College Football for the University of Alabama where was a starter in all 26 games he played. In 2013 he was a 5th round draft pick by the Seattle Seahawks and 137th overall.
But unfortunately Williams started his NFL career with a pre-existing knee injury. He was soon placed on Seattle’s Injured Reserve List and it was announced he would be out for the 2013 season
A year later, Williams again injured his knee in a preseason practice drill which saw him miss the entire 2014 season.
But not even two knee injuries could stop Tha Monstar. William’s worked hard and in the middle of this year he appeared on track as a possible 2015 starter.
But then disaster struck. In May he was diagnosed with Type 2 Papillary cancer. He was again ruled out for the season and underwent kidney surgery.
But despite this, Williams still lined-up in all four of Seattle’s 2015 preseason games. He landed a total of 5 tackles including 1 assisted sack.
Last week Williams was awarded the Ed Block Courage Award – an award which is voted for solely by the players on each NFL team. Players are asked to vote for a fellow team member who exemplifies “commitments to the principles of sportsmanship and courage.”
For Williams, to be recognised for his courage by his peers illustrates the enormous amount of respect the Seattle players have for him. Even though he hasn’t been able to hit the field in the regular season, Williams’ determination has clearly had an effect on those around him.
I’m certain that everyone is wishing Williams a rapid recovery and we look forward to the day when we see him on the field.
Rating – Normally, I’d only give zeros to players who don’t make the field. But I’m sure we’ll all agree that an exception can be made in this instance.
5 out of 5
Brad Wing’s Giants Nearly Knock Over the Patriots
The New York Giants came extraordinarily close to ending the New England Patriots undefeated run losing 27-26 in the final seconds of the game.
The Gaints led for most of the game and forced some unusual errors from the Patriots’ quarterback Tom Brady who fumbled twice and had a pass intercepted for only the third time this year.
Brad Wing finished the game with 4 punts and one inside 20. His longest punt was 53 yards. However, one 42 yard punt did result in an 82 yard punt return by New England’s Danny Amendola. It looked to be a certain touchdown except that Amendola was tripped up by his own player on New York’s 7 yard line.
— NFL (@NFL) November 15, 2015
— Ron Flatter (@ronflatter) November 15, 2015
Wing was also praised in his role as kick holder after an exceptionally high snap. Now when was the last time you heard someone praised from their kick holding skills?
— Ron Flatter (@ronflatter) November 16, 2015
Nice catch of high snap there by Aussie Brad Wing for the go ahead field goal. Giants now in same situations as 49ers in week 4. #NYGvsNE
— Adam #AussieFaithful (@AussieFaithful) November 16, 2015
Wing and the Giants will be disappointed with the loss. Not only did they miss an opportunity to knock off the Patriots who are clearly the team to beat, but it leaves their record at 5 wins and 5 losses headed into the bye next week.
Rating – It’s nice to see some praise headed Wing’s way in his role as kick holder – rarely do those guys get a mention. His punting game was also solid.
3 out of 5
Aussie Takes an NCAAF Record
It’s fair to say that Aussie’s are pretty good at punting. In fact, 4 of the 10 2015 Ray Guy Award semi-finalists are Australian. So it’s no surprise that Australian’s are setting some punting records.
This week, Wake Forest University punter Alex Kinal punted for the 323rd time in his college career – an NCAAF record.
322 college punts breaks the NCAA record. Congrats Alex Kinal. pic.twitter.com/Ny0TernY8g
— Nathan Chapman (@ProkickAus) November 14, 2015
Kinal is a senior at Wake Forest. Originally from Adelaide, he played AFL through his teen years. At the age of 20, with the help of Prokick Australia, Kinal found a place on the Wake Forest University roster as a punter.
Kinal had 3 punts during Wake Forest’s 7-28 loss to Notre Dame. He averaged 50 yards per punt and with his longest being 58 yards.
It has been an underwhelming year for Wake Forest having only 3 wins and 7 losses. This partly explains the amount of punting Kinal has been called upon for. Strong attacking teams are usually able to drive into field goal range hence meaning there is less need for a punter.
Rating – Great work by Kinal. He set a NCAAF record and had another solid performance with the boot – I’ve added an extra point for making a mark on the history books. Let’s hope Wake Forest is able to get a few more wins on the board in the near future.
4 out of 5