Challenges on the field are nothing new for Nate Boyer. Except the fields that shaped him as young man were battlefields, not football fields.
Boyer, a 34-year-old former Green Beret, served multiple tours of duty in Iraq and was offered a contract as an undrafted free agent by the Seahawks following the draft.
"I'm just thrilled to get an opportunity," Boyer said on NFL Network. "These are the best athletes in the world, and just to get an opportunity and be able to compete, play for a great team in a great city, I couldn't be more thrilled, just for the chance."
The long snapper is a long shot to make the roster, but he beat the odds before. He walked on to the football team at the University of Texas in his late 20’s despite no football experience. He taught himself the position and played in 38 consecutive games for the Longhorns. He recorded more than 500 snaps at Texas without making a bad snap.
"Through a good friend of mine I’ve become very aware of who this guy is at his core, and everything that he represents, and what he’s done every year at Texas," John Schneider said in the post-draft press conference. "Then, three tours and come out of high school. He’s just a phenomenal person, and he’s a competitor, and he’s tough and he represents a lot of really, really cool things that quite frankly I think would be really good for a lot of us to be around."
At 5-11, 225 pounds he’s considered undersized for an NFL long snapper, but will compete with veteran Clint Gresham for a roster spot.
"We cherish competitors, we cherish tough guys, we cherish guys that can overcome odds, and he’s done all of that," Pete Carroll said. "And, he’s done a good job, too. He’s even snapped a football. We’ll see what happens. Gresh [Clint Gresham] better get ready."