Green Beret Turned NFL Pro "Always Competing"

Hailed as the NFL's "Most Improbable Prospect," long snapper Nate Boyer has received an opportunity to play for the Seattle Seahawks. The 34-year old former Green Beret discusses what life has been like since receiving the call from Pete Carroll...

It was early April when I had the opportunity to spend time talking with former Texas long snapper Nate Boyer.

As he was hailed the “NFL’s Most Improbable Prospect”, Boyer’s story of a Green Beret turned walk on turned 34-year old NFL draft prospect fascinated me. In speaking with him, I learned that he attacked every challenge he faced, from Longhorn football to tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan, with total dedication.


The mainstream media was captivated by Boyer, as the Bronze Star recipient made appearances on Fox and Friends and The Rich Eisen Show and his story was circulated in publications throughout the country.

Playing for the Texas Longhorns.

Football fans nationwide began voicing their support for Boyer through social media, message boards, and more. But as his popularity grew, so did Boyer’s determination to work even harder in the weight room to himself the best opportunity at a shot at playing ball in the NFL.

“[The attention] definitely helped, but I still worked and spent every day training, preparing myself. I wasn’t sitting around, so leading up to the draft, nothing was really that different,” he said.

As the calendar days ticked off until Draft Day, Boyer remained his cool and collected self; while many were voicing that they hoped to hear his name called, the athlete was focused on the bigger picture.

“I only really watched the last day of the draft. I was never expecting to get drafted. The NFL Network brought a crew to film in case I got the call. It wasn’t really ever about the draft, it was about afterwards and whether I would get that call,” he said.

Moments after tight end Gerald Christian was named Mr. Irrelevant 2015, Boyer’s phone rang.

It was Seattle Seahawks head coach, Pete Carroll.

“It was amazing. I don’t know how you put it, put anything into words. It wasn’t surreal, it was just really cool. I had prepared myself so much for that moment. I’m not saying I deserved it, but I have worked so hard and I’ve been ready for it,” he said.

While a handful of teams had been in touch with Boyer prior to the Draft, the Seahawks were not one of them. However, Boyer spoke with Carroll, as well as with GM John Schneider, and was eager to jump on the opportunity that had been presented.

“I mean, it was great. It was awesome. You hope for something like that and you never know if it’s going to happen, and then the phone rings and you pick it up and it’s Pete Carroll,” he said.

Since receiving the call, Boyer quickly realized the magnitude of the Seahawks fanbase. The 12th Man has been in full force, with an outpouring of support that Boyer experienced as soon as he touched down in Seattle.

“Although I didn’t grow up a Seahawks fan, I became one immediately.

“It has been good to hear from people in the area; they are incredible fans. They obviously they love their team, they love their players, and they love their city. You can’t ask for anything more than that. It’s a really strong fanbase that understands the game and players and what those players mean to the team,” he said.

"Although I didn’t grow up a Seahawks fan, I became one immediately."

As typical with Boyer, it’s about more than just football, as he also embraces the support he's receiving from other veterans.

“There is a big veteran community, a military community up here in Seattle. It has been really good to hear from all of those people, too,” he said.

Rookie minicamp was Boyer’s full welcome into the Seahawks world of “Always Compete,” a theme he has constantly applied to his life throughout the past decade.

Boyer at minicamp. (photo: Seahawks)

“Minicamp was the coolest experience. I have a real shot at this and knowing that is awesome. The facilities out here are unbelievable. The way they do things, the way Coach Carroll runs everything, what they are all about here, the competition. Everything is a competition. I love that,” he said.

Only time will tell how Boyer’s NFL career with unfold. As he’s been aware along, he’s working towards a goal alongside players years younger. But while his age may set him apart, for Boyer, it’s just a number, and not one that stands in between himself and his dreams.

“I’m going to die trying to make this roster,” he said when asked what he wants Seahawks fans to know about him. “I’m going to give as much as and more than anybody else around me.

“I know I'm just a long snapper, but I’m going to give it everything that I’ve got.”

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