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Building the Ultimate NFL Team Using Current NBA Stars

Greg SwartzCleveland Cavaliers Lead WriterJanuary 8, 2017

Building the Ultimate NFL Team Using Current NBA Stars

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    NBA and NFL players have a lot in common.

    Both are amongst the best athletes in the world (well, besides linemen and kickers) and get paid a lot of money to do what they do.

    While we've never seen a professional athlete compete in both sports, it would appear the NBA does feature plenty of stars who could suit up on Sundays and help out an NFL team.

    So who would be the best candidates to fill out a NFL team? Who would make the best quarterback, running back, wide receiver and other key positions?

    Here is the ultimate NFL team made solely of NBA players.

Quarterback: Rajon Rondo

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    Needing an elite quarterback, why not get the best passer in the entire NBA?

    Rajon Rondo has a knack for finding the smallest of windows to complete passes to teammates while on the hardwood, and he would only have an easier time on the gridiron with a smaller ball.

    Rondo grew up wanting to play football, but he instead went the route of basketball at his mother's request.

    Things have obviously worked out for the best, but who knows what would have happened if Rondo played football at Kentucky along with basketball?

    Even though he doesn't have the biggest or tallest frame, at 6'1", Rondo is approximately the same height as New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees.

    Just sayin'.

     

    Other Choices: Deron Williams, Chris Paul

Running Back: Nate Robinson

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    One of the few NBA players who actually played college football, Nate Robinson was a high school star running back in Seattle.

    Playing for both the University of Washington football and basketball teams, Robinson was actually recruited by Pete Carroll to play at USC and pursue an NFL career. Last August, Carroll invited Robinson to a Seahawks practice while the NBA was in a lockout.

    At 5'9" and 180 pounds, Robinson already has a nice stature for a running back and has shown enough hops to go flying over a goal-line pile into the end zone.

    Robinson at running back is an easy choice.

     

    Other Choices: Russell Westbrook, Eric Gordon

Wide Receiver: Kevin Durant

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    There are many candidates for this position among NBA'ers, but none would live up to Durant at receiver.

    At 6'9" with a 9'6" standing reach, Durant's 33-inch vertical means that he could catch a football at over 12 feet up in the air.

    We know he's got the passion for the game, as Durant joined a fraternity flag-football game during last year's NBA lockout.

    If there's a jump ball in the end zone, Durant's coming down with it.

     

    Other Choices: J.R. Smith, Derrick Williams

Tight End: LeBron James

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    Even though he was a wide receiver in high school, added muscle over the years means a switch to tight end for LeBron.

    At 6'8" and 250 pounds, James could block and catch with the best of them, and he would be an amazing weapon to have near the end zone.

    Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer offered James a scholarship to come play wide receiver at Notre Dame back in 2001 before realizing LeBron was just a little bit better at basketball.

     

    Other Choices: Josh Smith, Blake Griffin

Offensive Tackle: Glen Davis

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    Glen Davis is actually a former running back despite topping the scales now at roughly 290 pounds.

    His big, wide body would be perfect for a left tackle to protect Rondo at quarterback, and he's shown enough foot speed to keep up with the best defensive ends.

    Coming from a school as football-rich as LSU certainly doesn't hurt either.

     

    Other Choices: DeMarcus Cousins, Al Jefferson

Offensive Guard: Zach Randolph

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    Adding another bruiser on the offensive line, Randolph would look great next to Glen Davis lined up at guard.

    At 6'9" and 260 pounds, Randolph could bulldoze linebackers on pitches to Nate Robinson or help keep Rondo safe on passing plays.

    Having two near-seven-foot behemoths on the same line would be total intimidation.

     

    Other Choices: DeJuan Blair, Jared Sullinger

Center: Tim Duncan

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    Needing a veteran leader to bring the line together as a unit, Duncan is an obvious choice.

    While he's not as bulky as his other linemen, Duncan is a proven winner and an incredibly intelligent player who would be a leader in the huddle and the locker room.

    Getting him angry may take some work though.

     

    Other Choices: Nene, Festus Ezeli

Defensive End: Dwight Howard

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    Dwight Howard is too talented and athletic not to make it on the field somewhere, and defensive end would maximize his skills.

    Tall and strong, Howard would swim past offensive tackles and swat down a ridiculous number of passes every game.

    His leaping ability would give quarterbacks nightmares, and you just know he's picturing Stan Van Gundy's face on every QB he goes after, providing further motivation.

     

    Other Choices: Blake Griffin, Kevin Love

Defensive Tackle: Kendrick Perkins

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    One word: Intimidation.

    This is what Kendrick Perkins and his stare would bring to the defensive line. Just imagine being a center looking up and having that menacing glare just burning into your retinas.

    At 6'10" and 270 pounds, Perkins would bring the nasty every down, stopping the run and wreaking havoc on opposing quarterbacks.

     

    Other Choices: Emeka Okafor, Kwame Brown

Outside Linebacker: Serge Ibaka

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    Serge Ibaka would be the ideal hybrid DE/OLB combination with his size and strength.

    The NBA's leading shot-blocker last season, adding Ibaka's defensive prowess to the team would be a must. He would be quick enough to cover tight ends and receivers while still possessing enough muscle to bring down the QB on blitzes.

    At 6'10", Ibaka would also be a prime candidate to get into passing lanes to swat down passes and pick off the ones QBs thought they could previously fit over defenders.

     

    Other Choices: Bismack Biyombo, Kenneth Faried

Inside Linebacker: Metta World Peace

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    Who isn't at least a little bit afraid of Ron, er, Metta World Peace?

    At 6'7" and 260 pounds, World Peace would be allowed to get a little crazy on the football field and start elbowing, er, tackling players, something he should thoroughly enjoy.

    He would bring a new level of trash talking to the defense and help ignite some real brawls during the game.

     

    Other Choices: Reggie Evans, Kenyon Martin

Cornerback: John Wall

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    You have to have speed at the cornerback position, and Wall may be the fastest player in the entire league.

    At the NBA draft combine in 2010, Wall ran the three-quarter-court drill in only 3.14 seconds. At 6'4", he would actually be taller than most wide receivers, and with that speed, Wall could stick with anybody.

    A 6'9" wingspan helps to reel in a few interceptions as well.

     

    Other Choices: Kyrie Irving, Ty Lawson

Safety: Derrick Rose

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    The way Derrick Rose fights through defenders and attacks the rim with regularity, attacking backs and receivers should be no problem.

    One of the best athletes in the entire NBA, Rose is a solid 6'3", 195-pound stud that could lower the boom when needed.

    All he needs is a nice Troy Polamalu-esque haircut, and his transition from point guard to safety would be complete.

     

    Other Choices: Kobe Bryant, James Harden

Kicker: Steve Nash

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    Steve Nash is the only option at kicker for team NBA.

    The son of a former professional soccer player, Nash has spent time working out with the New York Red Bulls and describes himself as a "converted soccer player."

    A great overall athlete, Nash could probably play a number of positions on the football field, but his leg would be invaluable on this team.

     

    Other Choices: None

Head Coach: Pat Riley

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    While he's not currently on the sidelines, Pat Riley has been one of the top coaches in NBA history.

    His skills are not just limited to one sport, however, as Riley was actually a wide receiver at the University of Kentucky and was drafted by the Dallas Cowboys in 1967 before committing to an NBA career.

    Riley could bestow his knowledge from his playing days upon his new team, and his persuasive persona could lure whatever players he wanted to come play.

     

    Other Choices: Gregg Popovich, Phil Jackson

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