Leonard Peters has adjusted quickly to rugby

ERN = eRugbyNews.com

ERN Note: “Brought back, in a way, to rugby through former NFL player and Aspen 7s coach Andy Katoa, Peters has another shot at sports fame. His presence on the USA team electrified the world audience (hence the Total Rugby interview) because they know the number of American athletes who could make an impact in rugby is huge.”

About getting a chance to compete for the US in rugby, Leonard Peters said:
“First of all I was really grateful – for any athlete trying to cross over to any sport it is very hard, no matter which sport, but I was happy that [USA] coach Al [Caravelli] took me under his wing, taught me the sport and it’s been going great for me. Being an athlete helped a lot because obviously I could already run, jump, catch the ball, do all of that. It was learning the rules that was hard.” (ERN)

ERN Note: “Meanwhile coaches have said the key to Peters isn’t just his athleticism, but his ability to pass. It’s a tough skill to learn out of the blue, the rugby pass, but Peters took to it quickly.”

At the World Games an overseas coach asked USA coach Caravelli who his football players was, and Caravelli said:
“I pointed him out and the coach said ‘no, the guy who just started playing rugby a few weeks ago.’ I said, that’s the guy. He couldn’t believe it. Peters fit in so well.” (ERN)

About how he wasn’t prepared for the running that rugby players have to do, Peters said:
“I don’t think I was prepared for all the running in sevens. The conditioning was the biggest part for me coming over from football. In football you run around for nine seconds and then you can rest for 45, whereas in rugby they told me ‘we have to play for seven minutes’, and I said ‘seven minutes? I can play for seven minutes.’” (ERN)

About how he wanted to sub out less than a minute after he first played, Peters said:
“I wasn’t prepared for that, but I’ve got used to it now.” (ERN)

ERN Note: “What also surprised him was the sense of camaraderie. Peters said the Chinese Taipei crowd at the World Games cheered for the USA, even when they played the home team. He also noted that other members of the USA team camp helped each other, rather than looked on the camp as simply a competition for places.”

About how he was welcomed to the team, Peters said:
“I was thinking that nobody was going to help me because you’re competing for a spot on the team, but my eyes were really opened by how the guys would help me, teach me how to run angles and the plays. I was really drawn to the camaraderie on the team, really pleased that happened and I’m 100 percent into rugby now.” (ERN)

About playing for his country, Peters said:
“That was the one thing that really got me psyched into rugby. In the NFL you play other states in the USA, not other countries, but rugby is on a global scale. You basically compete against the best athletes in the world and that really opened my eyes as to how many athletes are out there.” (ERN)



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