Doc Rivers Makes Bold Claim About LeBron James’ Potential NFL Career

doc rivers

Getty Los Angeles Clippers HC Doc Rivers.

Despite spending most of his career coaching teams that are rivals to LeBron James, Doc Rivers has a lot of respect for the Los Angeles Lakers star. One of the last NBA games that was played before the lockdowns involved the Lakers and James beating Rivers’ Clippers team. It appears that the longtime head coach doesn’t have any hard feelings as he recently heaped some major praise at James.

James is one of the most impressive athletic specimens the world has ever seen and he just so happened to choose basketball as the sport he wanted to pursue. However, Rivers believes if James chose another sport, he’d be just as dominant.

“I really believe if LeBron James had to play football, he may have been the greatest football player ever,” said Rivers on the Go Off With Austin Rivers podcast.

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This isn’t the first time James’ potential as a football player has been discussed. He played the game in high school but decided he would pursue basketball. Considering he’s become arguably the greatest basketball player in NBA history, it’s hard to argue with his decision. That said, it’s hard not to imagine how he might’ve looked had he went to the NFL.

LeBron’s Size & Athleticism Sets Him Apart

Much has been made how smart of a basketball player James is, but if it wasn’t for his athleticism, he wouldn’t have been as dominant.

“I don’t think there’s ever been a better, and Michael [Jordan] was a super athlete, so was Kobe [Bryant], so is Kawhi [Leonard], I don’t know if there has ever been an athlete in our league like LeBron James,” Rivers said.

Not only is James a massive human, but he also boasts insane speed for somebody as big as him.

“When someone asks me about LeBron, ‘Explain to me why he’s so dominant,’” Rivers said. “I said, ‘Okay. He weighs 10 pounds more than Karl Malone. Karl Malone was a power forward and was looked upon as the biggest, strongest guy in the league. LeBron James weighs 10 pounds more than him at the small forward, moving at the speed that he moves at.’ That explains LeBron James in a nutshell.”

There are plenty of big guys who have gone to the NBA. What sets James apart is that he has the smarts and speed to utilize his size like nobody else has been able to. Whether or not you think he’s the best basketball player ever, there’s no doubt he’s one of the greatest athletes to ever walk the planet.

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What Position Would LeBron Have Played in NFL?

In the history of the NFL, there aren’t many 6-foot-9 men who succeeded and had long careers. There are certainly exceptions, but typically people that tall look to other sports. Had James went to the NFL, he would’ve likely been an offensive player. Wide receiver would’ve been a really interesting position for him. Can imagine a defensive back trying to guard James on a 50-50 ball?

He also could’ve become a tight end and just wrecked the NFL. He would’ve been a matchup nightmare. Think Darren Waller for the Las Vegas Raiders but a few inches taller. At the end of the day, James probably doesn’t regret the decision to go to the NBA, but it would’ve been fun to watch him tear up the NFL.

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