Sports | February 16, 2021 11:29 am

What Position Would LeBron James Have Played in NFL if He Tried Out for Cowboys in 2011?

James said Dallas and the Seahawks both offered him a tryout during the 2011 NBA lockout

LeBron James Is Positive He Would Have Made an NFL Roster in 2011 if He Tried Out
Lebron James throws a football at AT&T Stadium before an NFL game in Texas.
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Before jumping straight to the NBA from high school at the age of 18, LeBron James was recruited by schools like Notre Dame and Ohio State to play college … football.

Obviously a ridiculously good basketball player as a teenager, James was also a first-team, all-state player at wide receiver at St. Vincent-St. Mary High and could have played college football if he had wanted to. And, as James just told The Athletic, he’s also pretty sure he could have played in the NFL during the NBA lockout in 2011.

According to James, he had the option of beginning a professional football career after he was offered a tryout by Jerry Jones of the Dallas Cowboys and Pete Carroll of the Seattle Seahawks following the Heat falling in six games to the Dallas Mavericks to end the 16-time All Star’s first season in Miami.

“I would have made the team,” he said. “I would have tried out, but I would have made the team. One thing about it, I don’t mind working for something, so if I would have had to try out for the Cowboys or the Seahawks, or if I’d have stayed home and went back home to Cleveland, I’d have tried (out), but I would have made the team. I just know what I’m capable of doing on the football field. Especially at that age.”

James, who was in his mid-20s at the time, was serious enough about switching sports that he adjusted his training regimen and started running receiving routes again.

Appearing on Get Up! after James previously floated the idea he had toyed with playing pro football, ESPN analyst Louis Riddick offered his opinion about how effective the 36-year-old would be in the NFL if he had decided to play football.

According to Riddick, James would be an “offensive weapon” in the NFL.

“You call him a tight end or you call him a big wide receiver, but you need to have this guy with the ball in his hands. And you need him down the field,” Riddick said. “You can see the kind of body control and what kind of hand-eye coordination he has. Can you imagine him in the middle of the field as a tight end in a flex position going in against today’s linebackers and safeties? It would be unfair. Tom Brady, in particular, would sit there and go ‘Sign him up’ on my team. LeBron would be unstoppable in that regard. He really would. I’d just put him on offense and move him all over the place. You can best believe 50-50 balls would be thrown up on a regular basis.”

Brady is doing just fine without James on his team, but it would be fascinating to see the four-time NBA champ trade in his sneakers for cleats and make a run at a Super Bowl with the Buccaneers on what would be the superteam of all superteams.