This weekend, the NFL will crown a new champion when the New England Patriots battle the Atlanta Falcons in Super Bowl 51. This week also saw a former Super Bowl champion head to the WWE Performance Center and try out for a spot as a professional wrestler with the WWE.
WWE.com reported on Saturday that Isiah Stanback, a former member of the New York Giants, was one of the many people who the WWE brought in for tryouts with the company. Stanback played for five teams in the NFL and won a Super Bowl championship with the New York Giants in 2012 when they beat the New England Patriots.
Isiah Stanback wasn’t the only person with ties to the New York Giants to try out for the WWE this week. Terron Beckham, the cousin of Giants’ superstar wide receiver Odell Beckham, Jr. also showed up at the WWE Performance Center looking for a job. While Odell has never played in the Super Bowl, he is one of the most charismatic NFL players and if his cousin is anything close he could be a sleeper.
Bleacher Report indicated that the WWE did not offer Beckham a contract after his tryout with the company.
Making the transition from the NFL to the WWE is nothing new. This year, Brock Lesnar will battle Bill Goldberg at WrestleMania. Goldberg is a former member of the Atlanta Falcons, who play in the Super Bowl this week. Lesnar tried out for the NFL but washed out in Minnesota before moving on to the UFC.
Mojo Rawley made the move from NXT to the main roster in 2016. He played for both the Green Bay Packers and Arizona Cardinals before making his move to wrestling. The WWE superstar is also close friends with New England Patriots star Rob Gronkowski, a player who will have to sit out the Super Bowl this year.
Names from the past include Hacksaw Jim Duggan (Atlanta Falcons), Flyin’ Brian Pillman (Cincinnati Bengals), Ron Simmons (Cleveland Browns), Baron Corbin (Indianapolis Colts), Lex Luger (Green Bay Packers), and Monty Brown, who played in a Super Bowl for the New England Patriots.
Super Bowl champions and relatives of NFL stars were not the only notable names that tried out with the WWE this week. If there is any family that has made a giant mark on the WWE, it is the Anoa’i family from Samoa.
Of course, the biggest star was Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, but names like the Wild Samoans, Yokozuna, Rocky Johnson, Peter Maivia, Rikishi, the Usos, and Roman Reigns made names for themselves and there were many others as well. A new name wants to break into the WWE, as Lance Anoa’i, the son of Samu and grandson of Afa the Wild Samoan tried out as well.
Another second generation star showed up to work out with Seini Draughn. She is a name that fans might remember from TNA Impact Wrestling where she wrestled under the name Lai’d Tapa. She is the daughter of former WWE star The Barbarian.
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Other notable names that showed up for this week’s WWE tryouts include 2016 Olympic athlete Eduard Soghomonyan, kickboxer Katsiaryna “Katya” Kavaleva, indie wrestling veteran Nicole Matthews, and students of both the Dudley Boyz and Booker T.
The Super Bowl takes place on Sunday, Feb. 5, as the New England Patriots take on the Atlanta Falcons in Houston. The WWE tryouts which included the former Super Bowl champion and second-generation stars were held to find new students for the WWE Performance Center.
[Featured Image by WWE]