The past month has been a crazy time for me. I haven’t posted for a while, but plan on getting back to this regularly, so stay tuned!
In April this year I flew out to San Diego to attend the annual Husted Pro Camp. I have been to this camp 2 times already in 2012 and 2013. Both years I had performed very well and received a 5 star long snapping ranking with nothing to show, no invites to camp.
This year I had been training hard, my long snapping was on point and I was ready for camp! Like years in the past it was a week long evaluation. Each day we charted and got advice from the long snapping coaches. This year 13 year NFL veteran long snapper Justin Snow assisted 4 year NFL long snapper Mitch Palmer in coaching us.
After camp I didn’t get my hopes up, I had learned from the previous camps that even if a team shows interest, it doesn’t mean much unless you actually get a call. The waiting game began…
During the first week of April I was sitting at home when my phone rang. I picked it up and saw that it was a New Jersey phone number calling. Not knowing the number I answered hesitantly thinking it might be a telemarketer or someone with a wrong number. I said hello and the person on the other line introduced themselves as being with the New York Jets.
A feeling of relief, excitement, and happiness overwhelmed me as I started running through my kitchen. (I know, I may have overreacted but I was excited…I have waited a long time!) They set up my flight and told me I was coming in for a tryout that weekend.
On Thursday that week I flew out to New Jersey. They had flown in 10 specialists total to work us out to see if they wanted to bring in anyone for rookie mini camp. There were 4 snappers total including myself. I was the only long snapper that hadn’t played D1 football or gone to camp with an NFL team.
The workout went very well. I thought every long snapper snapped extremely well. There were no bad snaps. My thoughts were that they would go with one of the guys with camp experience already.
After we showered they pulled me aside and told me that they really liked me and wanted to bring me in to rookie mini camp in 2 weeks but things could change…
A week went by, the draft happened and I was expecting a call right after the draft because I had heard thats how it worked. I waited all afternoon with no call.
Finally my agent called at 9pm telling me that he spoke to the Jets and they were bringing me in!
The whole week before I long snapped and trained to make sure I was ready for anything. Working on my blocking, snapping, covering, and just my mindset. The day finally came for me to fly out. I arrived at the airport at 8am for my flight.
After getting through security I found out it was cancelled. I called the Jets and they were already on it, trying to book me another flight. They called back a little later with a new flight only for that one to be cancelled as well.
Finally after sitting at the airport for 5 hours I was able to get on a flight to New York, first class of course :).
I was picked up by a driver from JFK airport in New York, I got to drive through the city and sight see on the way there which was pretty cool. We finally got there and I had to fill out paper work right away, take head shots, get fitted for my helmet, and talk to a few staff members.
The next morning I had to wake up really early to get a physical. It didn’t take that long and they determined I was very healthy.
During the weekend we had one main practice a day and one walk through in the afternoon with meetings in between. When we were on the field we were constantly long snapping for charting or for team sessions. It was cool wearing an NFL helmet and jersey and being out there with all of their draft picks and free agents.
I thought I did very well the whole time and got great feedback everyday from the coaches and staff. But in the end I was not signed. It was a great experience and it might not be over yet. I will keep everyone posted on any new workouts or camps that I attend!
I appreciate all the support that you have given me over the past few years through my journey and hope that its not over yet!
Long Snapping Coach Kyle Stelter