They say competition at any occupation breads success. For second year offensive lineman, Laurent Duvernay-Tardiff, this appears to be a critical year if he’s going to hold off practicing medicine for the next several years.
Durvenay-Tardiff came to the Kansas City Chiefs courtesy of the 2014 NFL draft. Heading into this season, he’s in a battle to make the final 53-man roster. Though there was talk a year ago he’d project as a guard in the NFL, the team has lined him up at tackle in the OTA sessions.
However, should he make the roster as back-up this season, he will have earned it through hard work. Until someone tells him otherwise, he’s content procrastinating the last four months of medical school to chase the NFL dream. But to make it, he has some hefty competition on the roster.
“There are a bunch of new guys in and the competition is going to be really high this year. I think when you have competition, everyone is getting better and everyone is improving. I am looking forward for training camp to compete against my teammates and against everybody,” Duverney-Tardiff said.
One of those guys is veteran Guard, Ben Grubbs. With Duverney-Tardiff vying to become the back up for Eric Fisher and whomever the team chooses to play right tackle. So it’s vital, he learn as much as he can from Grubbs and the coaching staff to elevate his game.
Still even with the best intentions of his new teammate, that won’t insure a roster spot. Yet having a veteran like Grubbs to model your work ethic in practice can only help down the line.
“He is a great guy. It is easy to talk to him and to get some (questions). It’s really helpful for me to go to him and ask him little tricks, little detail and he is always willing to share that knowledge, so that’s pretty cool from him,” he stated.
When the Canadian standout was drafted by the Chiefs he was already halfway through medical school. Its something he has to fall back on should football not be in the cards long term. In fact, there’s a high probability the young man will have a far longer medical career than on the NFL circuit.
“When you have two passions, you don’t count the hours and you just work as hard as you need to. I love being in med school, I love being here and playing, and the good thing now is I when I am here, I can focus 100% on football and I don’t care about med school, “ he said.
The difference now is whenever he’s playing football his studies take a back seat and that that’s just fine with him.
“When I was back in college, I had to do both at the same time, so I think it’s a good thing now that I am able to focus on football and I really enjoy it,” the Chiefs lineman stated.
When you look at the Chiefs offensive line there’s no doubt as a unit they’ve upgraded every position. Yet not many people have talked much about the Canadian lineman. If that’s going to change, Duverney-Tardiff will have to make quite an impression in training camp.
If not, at least he has another career waiting in the wings.
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