Jarryd Hayne is all the rage thanks to his promising start in American Gridiron and the online clips of his running exploits. The former NRL star is dominating Australasian sports headlines thanks to his initial pre-season efforts with the San Francisco 49ers.
Hayne was always a special league player, a big back with effortless speed, poise and balance. But his apparent progress is still something of a surprise, leading to speculation about whether other league and union players could make it in America. At the very least, the raw material exists Downunder. We've come up with a sample selection of New Zealand footballers with NFL credentials. Who would be your pick to succeed?
1) Roger Tuivasa-Sheck
Everyone knew about his amazing footwork, but the Kiwi's workrate and stamina for the Roosters is mind blowing. Marshawn Lynch from Seattle is the master of beating tackles in the NFL - the Seahawks' running back is around the 98kg mark while Tuivasa-Sheck is 93kg. Roger the Dodger might have to bulk up a bit.
2) Sam Kasiano
The Bulldogs Bulldozer is in terrific form. The 125kg league prop is perfectly proportioned for the NFL's battle zones, having a barrel-like upper body atop remarkably light feet. Kasiano might have to put on a few pounds to make it in the NFL trenches, and even get a bigger gut. But he is the real-deal raw material.
3) Dan Carter
A late-30s career as an NFL goalkicker would be a cinch for the All Blacks superstar. Why not - in all seriousness? Kickers can go on for ever - there are plenty like Morten Andersen who played well into their 40s. Carter should pack an American football when he heads to France. He could spend the rest of his playing days bruise-free and landing goals from in front.
4) Akira Ioane
The rising Auckland wonder forward - with the speed and fitness to make the national sevens squad - has the build and gifts for a wide receiver. Playing a glamour position would be a massive learning curve and Ioane might need to trim down a little. But if a player of his ilk was scouted by the NFL at an early age, who knows? Bottom line: players who leave the Blues do really well elsewhere.
5) Ardie Savea
The lightweight loosie with the speed, agility and ferocity to make a terrific corner back. As for the adjustment, learning should be his middle name thanks to a never-ending apprenticeship with the All Blacks.
6) Shaun Johnson
The Warriors' wizard has lightening speed and evasion skills to burn. Johnson has punt returner written all over him. Trapped in the Warriors' Groundhog Day nightmare, the brilliant halfback deserves the chance to play in a special team.