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Chiefs Rugby Star Louis Rees-Zammit On How To Pronounce Name & Future in Kansas City

Utsav Khanna

Chiefs Rugby Star Louis Rees-Zammit On How To Pronounce Name & Future in Kansas City

As the rookie mini camp for the new season wrapped up on Monday, Chiefs gathered some of their players and coach Andy Reid to take questions from the media. Among the players was Chiefs’ unique signing, Louis Rees-Zammit, who opened his first press conference by pronouncing his name to clarify for all.

He even had to repeat himself, and clarify that he wasn’t talking too fast. He said,“I’ve heard many different ways of saying it. It’s Louis Rees-Zammit. I mean, I’m not too fast but (shrugs) I guess it is what it is.” 

Once that was out of the way, he tackled questions from new journalists, in a strange city and for a sport he’s just started playing. A lot of beginnings for the Welsh athlete. But he looked rather comfortable in his new position.

Yes, people don’t know how to pronounce his name. And talking to his parents is a task due to the six hour time difference. Also, the number of plays in rugby are one tenth of the NFL. But despite the expected initial struggles, Andy Reid is hopeful.

Currently, listing him as a running back, both coach Reid’s and Zammit’s own opinion of his role hint towards versatility. The former Rugby player noted,“So obviously, I’ve been put with the running back group to start with. I think there’s gonna be a versatile role for me, I’m hoping. You know, the coaches here are very creative. So, see what they can do.”

Zammit comes from a very fast, free flowing sport that has only 20-30 plays as he revealed. And now he’s tasked with the learning hundreds of them Thus, more than the role and where he’ll fit, he’s focussing on what’s trying to fit into, in the first place. He notes,”Its all about me learning the playbook and learning the game because without that I can’t do anything else, so I’m fully focused on the now.”

Louis Rees-Zammit Reveals Why He Switched to American Football

There aren’t may people you’d be asking, “Why did you join the NFL?” It’s mostly not upto anyone’s choice. It’s kind of like Hogwarts; they choose you. But with Rees-Zammit, things are different.

He’s switching over from a sport he’s already done well in. Most people play one sport in their lives, as a profession anyway, and then move onto retirement. Not this Welsh rugby star. For him, the biggest reason to switch over was his father.

An American football player who played the game in UK, when Louis was a child. His father wanted to play in the NFL as well. Louis spent his childhood watching the games every Sunday. Staying up late into the night just to catch a glimpse of Sunday Night Football. And once he saw the path in front of him, he knew it wasn’t a question of if, but when he gets to fulfil his father’s dream.

Talking about his father’s love for the game, he even reveals what happens on phone calls every day now. When asked whether the conversations they have now have elevated, Zammit nods but notes,“He’s massively into American football so the questions he’s been asking me are tricky ones to answer.” 

Another important reason for him to switch over to the world’s richest league, was his own achievements in his sport. Zammit believes there wasn’t much left to do as a rugby player. He said,“I achieved everything I wanted to in rugby. So now was the perfect time.”

Kansas City eyes a three-peat. And if this move by Coach Reid and the front office bears fruit, it will go down as another masterclass by Andy Reid in adding pizzazz with substance.

About the author

Utsav Khanna

Utsav Khanna


Utsav Khanna, an NFL journalist with a keen eye for the game, has been covering the sport for the past two years, trying to bring the most interesting stories from and around the game. Armed with a degree in English Journalism from the prestigious Indian Institute of Mass Communication, he transitioned from a background in Public Relations to pursue his passion for sports reporting. Having penned over 200 insightful articles, he tries to bring in all the perspectives while writing as the NFL probably as one of the most intricate ecosystems in all of sports. A fan of the Pittsburgh Steelers, he admires the way Coach Mike Tomlin makes players buy-in into a system and entrusts them in challenging situations.

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