Trick shot kicker's viral YouTube vid gets him NFL tryout - Cleveland 19 News Cleveland, OH

Trick shot kicker's viral vid gets him NFL tryout

Havard Rugland's YouTube video of trick kicks landed him a tryout with the New York Jets. (Source: YouTube) Havard Rugland's YouTube video of trick kicks landed him a tryout with the New York Jets. (Source: YouTube)

(RNN) - A 60-yard field goal? No problem.

Kicking a football into a canoe waiting off shore? Or into the arms of a passenger in a passing car? Or ringing a trash can … over his back shoulder?

It's as good as in.

In fact, Havard Rugland might be the best kicker who never played football. Ever.

Rugland, who is from Norway, doesn't even know much about football. With a foot like he has, he doesn't really have to, not yet anyway.

His video of trick kicks has already scored nearly 2 million views on YouTube.

Some of the shots required more than one take, including one of him sending the pigskin through a basketball hoop.

"The basketball kick, I wanted it to go straight in, but it kept hitting the rim. That actually took a while. That could have been like 40 tries," Rugland told The New York Times.

The video also caught the attention of NFL teams.

Rugland has already tried out with the New York Jets and will be returning for a workout later in 2013.

"I've played amateur soccer most of my life, but before this trip I never had a coach, or real training regarding kicking. So I was not sure what my level was like, compared to other kickers," Rugland said in a statement.

Working with kicking coach Michael Husted, the former soccer player who found himself without a team after his club disbanded, Rugland is learning the art of another kind of futbol - American football.

Husted knows a little bit about how to be a successful kicker. He scored more than 500 points over a nine-year career with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Of course, Rugland doesn't yet know the feeling of taking a hit by a 300-pound lineman. And he admits he has a lot to learn about the game.

But Husted says his protege stacks up well.

"He has a canon for a leg. As he continues to refine his technique, he could be one of the strongest kickers in the NFL," Husted said.

In addition to a kicking coach, Rugland also has an agent, Jill McBride Baxter, who "signed him on the spot" after watching him work with Hustead.

"I could tell he had a strong leg … he has a lot of potential," Baxter said.

"The process is, right now teams may or may not sign a second kicker, getting ready for training camp. They'll work out different guys. Hopefully he gets signed to a deal so he can be in training camp.

Then he's got to compete in training camp, and beat the guy out. Is it easy, absolutely not. Can he do it, yes." 

From YouTube to the NFL? With a little bit of hard work, it just might happen for Rugland.

"It's all about how he performs," Baxter said. "I will call every team, ask them to work him out. Because they have never seen him, I think he has a better chance of getting a workout. Other guys have college film. If you watch his video, he has a lot of potential."

For now, Baxter is looking for sponsors to help him stay in the states and continue to refine his technique, giving him a shot at the pros.

"If you had asked me a couple of months ago, playing in the NFL was just a vague dream," Rugland said. "But after the recent development and progress, my goal is to play in the NFL."

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