Green Bay Packers give Duke PG a try-out at QB

April 14, 2009

That is the American dream… One day, after work, you get a call asking you to try out at your favorite sport for a chance to make the team.  They like what they see, and ask you to come back.  You make millions and live happily ever after…THE END.

Nice story huh?  Too bad it never really works out that way.

I had a moment that was somewhat similar to this story.  When I was in college, they started a brand new minor league baseball team.  I figured out in the sticks where I was going to school, they must have not been that good.  they had ads in the school newspaper looking for players.  I played in high school, like most people probably did, and I was decent.  (really, not great, but pretty good.  I hit .350 my freshman year.  Which meant that I was batting 6th…lol)

I went out the first day and didn’t embarrass myself.  I caught everything hit to me in left field, had some good throws home on line, one hop and hit well in the cage.  I think that because I was black, (one of four, and yes, I knew the other three…) they brought me back for the next day.  That day, we just did a lot of scrimmaging and situational hitting/fielding drills.

I lasted a whole three days.  They found out what I already knew…I had a good eye, took a lot of walks, mashed what I hit, but had a LOT of problems with the breaking stuff.  That and my advanced age ( I was going to turn 23) made me a bad fit for a single A rookie league baseball team.  I got to keep my gear from the experience,  which amounted to some Odgen Raptors T-shirts, a pair of stir-ups ( I hate the socks with the stitched on stir-ups) some BIKE undershirts and pants and a cap.

I didn’t belong, and that was okay with me.  I got to compete and that was good enough for me.  I knew my trip was going to be short (although it was longer than I expected) because when I got there I saw 4 players that actually deserved to be there and another dozen or so that could do some exceptional things (like they had a rocket arm, they were fast etc…) that I couldn’t do.

Does that mean you should give up?

Greg Paulus, who chose to be a point guard instead of a quarterback in college, last week had a workout for the Green Bay Packers.

[+] EnlargeGreg Paulus

Jim O’Connor/US Presswire
Greg Paulus was Duke’s starting point guard for three seasons before losing the job to Nolan Smith.

Paulus, who started 95 games at Duke before his role was drastically reduced his senior season, worked out in front of Packers representatives in Durham, N.C., Duke spokesman Art Chase said.

This was a good move for him, since the best that he could of hoped for is playing overseas.  His DUKE pedigree is definitely worth something, and his numbers as a starter are not that bad either…But if the team has the internet, it might not be to his advantage.

This looks like an all you can eat buffet!

This looks like an all you can eat buffet!

Chase said that Paulus threw to receiver Eron Riley during the session in advance of the draft, which is April 25-26.

The Wisconsin State Journal and ProFootballTalk.com first reported the story.

Though Paulus, from Syracuse, N.Y., opted for the Blue Devils as a basketball player, he is not without some serious football credentials. He was offered a football scholarship by Notre Dame as well as the University of Miami, and was a former Gatorade football player of the year at Christian Brothers Academy.

Paulus, 6-foot-1, 180 pounds, was a four-time all-state football player; a starter in the U.S. Army All-American game; and set six state passing records. Christian Brothers was 42-3 during his time there, and he had 11,763 career passing yards and 152 touchdown passes in 45 games.

He is the only one among his male siblings to take the basketball route. Each of his five brothers played Division I-A football; Mike Paulus is currently a quarterback at North Carolina.

Paulus averaged 9.9 points and 4.1 assists as a three-year starter for the Blue Devils. But coach Mike Krzyzewski shuffled his lineup and Paulus, with a history of injuries, was replaced by Nolan Smith at the point. Paulus played just 16.1 minutes a game this season, averaging 4.9 points and 1.3 assists.

NFL.com Video

State of the Green Bay Packers.

He earned widespread praise, however, for his conduct and demeanor after losing the starting job, giving guidance to the younger players and never showing outward disgruntlement.

He also expressed no regret about choosing basketball over football, during an interview in January with USA Today.

“I wanted to play point guard, and I got a chance to do that and to play for Duke and Coach K,” Paulus told USA Today. “I wouldn’t change a thing.”

I can think of this as something that I want to change...

I can think of this as something that I want to change...

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.


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