Former NFL player Silas Redd played his first ever rugby league game in the Southern Hemisphere on Saturday in Auckland, in what was just his second game since switching codes.
We caught up with the running back turned Ipswich Jets winger, after he took the field in a day of scrimmage against the Ponsonby Ponies, Howick Hornets and Bay Roskill Vikings.
That’s the second game of rugby league down Silas, how’d you find it?
It was great man. My guys were communicating with me if I was out of position or needed to push up or get back. The communication from them was great out there, so I really appreciate my teammates for making this easier for me. It was hard, but they made it a whole lot easier.
You only just arrived in Australia, so what’s the travel schedule been like this past week?
I just touched down a few days ago and then we came straight over here to New Zealand. So I’ve been on a few flights these past few days! Felt a little bit of jet lag, but I was excited, so once the adrenaline kicked in it was all good.
You’re only other game of league was at the Ohana Cup in Hawaii, so how did you find the step up against Auckland club sides?
Very physical, but I like that. I’m a very aggressive person on the field and I am a competitor, so I love the physicality. I think that’s what I enjoy most about the game.
What’s been the toughest part of the game to grasp so far?
Positioning. Just knowing when to be in the right position [on the wing]. I’m getting the fitness down, that’s all coming back, so that feels pretty good.
In terms of conditioning, how different does is an NFL body than a rugby league body?
It’s a different shape, rugby players are in incredible shape. Because you are playing offence and defence non stop. In American football you get a huddle and then the average play is six or seven seconds, so there’s a lot of stop and go. This is continuous running, and that takes some getting used to.
What are your main goals now for 2018?
Just keep getting better man, and have more positive days than negative days. If I can stack more positive days up than negative then everything else will take care of itself. Obviously the main goal is NRL, but I am taking it one day at a time. I am enjoying my time with the Jets and hopefully they are enjoying me.