Ex-Jet bust will get shot to throw passes

New York Daily News - - SPORTS - BY ANDY CLAY­TON

Chris­tian Hack­en­berg might fi­nally get to throw his first pass in a pro game.

One of the worst draft picks in Jets his­tory was in­cluded on a list of play­ers who have signed on with the new Al­liance of Amer­i­can Foot­ball set to start play in Fe­bru­ary, Pro Foot­ball Talk re­ported.

The AAF is an eight-team de­vel­op­men­tal league that will de­but af­ter Su­per Bowl LIII in Fe­bru­ary. The start-up league is the brain­child of Char­lie Eber­sol — son of for­mer NBC Sports chair­man Dick Eber­sol — and long­time NFL exec Bill Po­lian. The league will play in the NFL's off­sea­son (Fe­bru­ary to April) and the AAF has a broad­cast deal with CBS.

Play­ers in the AAF will re­port­edly get three-year, $250,000 con­tracts with an out-clause if they get an of­fer from the NFL. Teams are based in At­lanta, Birm­ing­ham, Or­lando, Mem­phis, San An­to­nio, Phoenix, Salt Lake and San Diego.

"One ob­jec­tive is to take some of those peo­ple who can't quite make it and make them into qual­ity NFL play­ers," Po­lian told ESPN.

Hack­en­berg cer­tainly falls into that cat­e­gory.

The new league will be hold­ing a draft to al­lo­cate QBs on Nov. 27 at The Luxor's Es­port Arena in Las Ve­gas. For­mer NFL QB Scott Tolzien will also be in the al­lo­ca­tion draft, per PFT.

More than 600 play­ers have signed con­tracts for the 2019 cam­paign, the AAF an­nounced last month.

Jets GM Mike Maccagnan made a mas­sive blun­der in the 2016 NFL Draft when he made Hack­en­berg the 51st over­all pick. The Penn State prod­uct was the first quar­ter­back in more than three decades drafted in the first two rounds not to take a sin­gle sin­gle reg­u­lar-sea­son snap over his first two sea­sons.

Gang Green traded Hack­en­berg to the Raiders this off­sea­son for a con­di­tional sev­enth-round pick. He lasted just three weeks with the lowly Raiders. He then made a brief stop in Ea­gles camp be­fore end­ing up on the prac­tice squad with the Ben­gals. He was cut loose ear­lier this week.

While Hack­en­berg was never trusted to get into a game while in a Jets uni­form, he did toss Gang Green's coach­ing staff un­der the bus be­fore he left the or­ga­ni­za­tion for not do­ing enough to help him de­velop.

"I think there were some times where I threw it re­ally good though­out my first two years here, so that was the frus­trat­ing part for me, is the ups and downs and not know­ing why, if that makes sense, and not re­ally get­ting any in­for­ma­tion from any­body on how to fix that and how to ad­dress it."

In that same in­ter­view, Hack­en­berg added: "Hell, my ca­reer hasn't even started yet."

Now it looks like that start will come in the AAF.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.