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Eagles Sign Canadian Rugby Star Adam Zaruba

Posted Jul 24, 2017

The Eagles signed a tight end, but not one with a traditional football background.

Instead, Adam Zaruba is a star on the Canada Sevens national rugby team. The 26-year-old is 6-5, 265 pounds and wrapped up the World Series season in May by leading Canada to a bronze medal at the tournament in London. He tried out for the Eagles on Sunday, but will not be able to return until he is granted a visa.

He is, however, no stranger to the gridiron. The North Vancouver native played football at Carson Graham Secondary School and was recruited to continue his career at Simon Fraser University, but he told Patrick Johnston of The Province that "it didn't work out."

Zaruba turned to rugby and was on the national team by 2014. Following the recent World Series season, he was contacted by an agent trying to find rugby players who might be interested in making the switch to football.

He is not the first rugby player to join an NFL team. Jarryd Hayne signed with the 49ers in 2015 as a running back and return specialist. Hayne made the 53-man roster out of Training Camp and make his NFL debut in Week 1 of that season, but he spent the majority of the season on the practice squad. He retired after one year and returned to rugby because he didn't want to have to learn a new playbook after a coaching change was made.

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