Catching Up With Bryan Kehl

TotalBlueSports.com caught up recently with former BYU linebacker great Bryan Kehl. Kehl is currently enjoying his role as a new father while he waits on NFL workouts after being released from the Washington Redskins following a knee injury last season.

Many BYU football fans fondly recall Bryan Kehl and may wonder what he's up to this offseason after sustaining a knee injury last season while playing for the Washington Redskins. Kehl was recently cleared to resume his playing career after rehabbing the injury.

"The latest and greatest, well, I'm just trying to get my knee healthy," said Kehl. "I went down to a doctor, Doctor (James) Andrews, down in Florida and have been cleared, so hopefully the word will get out now and my agent can go to work and get some teams lined up. Other than that life is good."

Last year, Kehl signed a one year deal with the Redskins where he was enjoying a lot of success. His emergence on the field came to a screeching halt during the seventh week of the season after he suffered a knee injury that placed him on in the injured reserve list.

"I signed back in Washington for a one year deal and ended up tearing my knee up in week seven," Kehl said. "I was playing really great too, but I tore up my knee and I went out on injured reserve and then my contract expired when the year ended. After that I became a free agent. Washington had just signed three linebackers from free agency so it doesn't look like I'm in their plans for the future, which is fine. I would have liked to have gone back because I really enjoyed it. It is what it is and you just move on. I just hope I get [another] chance to play special teams but also on defense because that's what I love."

Kehl's ready to join any NFL roster in need of an experienced linebacker. He feels like a prom date waiting for the big dance.

"I'm just waiting, man," Kehl said with a laugh. "I'm just sitting out on the curb all dressed up waiting for a date! I look good though. I just need a date. I'm ready to go, but I just need someone to pick me up."

Being an NFL player has been a dream come true for Kehl. However, he admits there are things associated with playing professionally in the NFL that he doesn't enjoy as much as he did playing football in college.

"It's just a job now so it's so much different," Kehl said. "It's still fun and it's really a dream come true. Everything in-between the lines is awesome and a dream come true, but the whole business side of it is really lame. You become a commodity, a good to them. You're a glorified race horse to them. That's all you are and they treat you as such. They're only as good to you as you are good to them."

Aside from football, Bryan Kehl has been enjoying life as a father to his newborn son. Both he and former teammate David Nixon are new fathers and both have given BYU Head Coach Bronco Mendenhall verbal commitments on behalf of their newborn sons.

"We have our baby boy which is number two, so we have our future BYU linebacker for the class of 2032," Kehl said with a laugh. "David Nixon's wife is also having a baby too so we'll have two outside backers for the class of ‘32. We've already [given] them verbal commitments so we're good on that."

Although it's been a few years since Kehl wore the blue and white, he still keeps in regular contact with his former coaches. He's excited for BYU football this year and feels Taysom Hill is on the verge of having a breakout season.

"Oh yeah, I talk to those guys here and there and talk to (Kelly) Poppinga mostly," Kehl said. "Those guys are studs over there and he's a stud. I'm excited to watch BYU next year and I think they're going to take the next step. I think Taysom is going to do some great things next year. He went through a knee rehab situation and, knowing what that's like, you can't really spend as much time focusing on the game. I expect him to take the next step this year having played all of last year. He's got all the tools to be great."

This past spring, Kehl attended a few BYU practices where he was able to see what kind of team his former head coach is putting out on the field.

"I went to about three practices," Kehl said. "I think they'll be good. They've got some hogs on defense and some good looking guys. Overall, I think the team is more athletic than the teams I played on. Now, they wouldn't beat the teams I played on, but I think the team is overall more athletic. It gives us a chance against the big boys, but that doesn't mean anything unless you bring the rest of it though."

Bryan admits he misses suiting up for BYU. If he could, Kehl would turn back the clock for another chance to don that BYU helmet.

"I really do miss it," Kehl said. "I miss it all the time. I wish I could have played there forever and ever. I miss the guys I played with. I miss being coached by the coaches that are there. I wish I could go back and play again. I miss the standards that are there because it's not the same in the NFL. It's just so much different. If I could, I would go back and be a Cougar all over again."

Following the Mountain West Elite camp, Bryan Kehl gave an inspiring speech about how he rose up to become who he was today to all the camp participants. Here is a video of that speech below.


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