While his teammates laughed and danced in circles, DK Metcalf stoically caught football at the training ground on Friday. Where FC Bayern footballers usually train, the Seattle Seahawks superstar prepared for the upcoming game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Sunday, 3:30 p.m., ProSieben/DAZN).
After training at Säbener Strasse, a reporter from Metcalf asked what skills he most admired in footballers. The 24-year-old, who had squeezed into a Bayern jersey for the media event, didn’t think twice: “Especially their footwork and how they can shoot the ball. I can’t shoot the ball like that, I’ve tried a couple of times,” the footballer shook his head and smiled.
Metcalf can run faster, jump higher, and dodge opponents more easily than most pros in the National Football League (NFL). In order to stand out in the league of best-trained athletes, you have to have special skills. DeKaylin Zecharius Metcalf has them.
The Seattle Seahawks wide receiver isn’t just an eye-catcher because of his blue-dyed hair, but above all because of his physique. Even during his games at college, which the man from Oxford in the state of Mississippi played for the Ole Miss squad, he caused astonishment across state borders.
Metcalf has been gifted by nature with a physique that makes him a near-perfect pass receiver in football. His physique rushed ahead of him for a long time, at the NFL Combine – the annual talent show of the league – talent scouts and coaches then noted it in black and white: 1.93 meters tall, 107 kilograms heavy, 25 centimeters long hands. Run the 40 yards in 4.33 seconds, jump 1.03 meters and jump 3.40 meters from a standing position, and bench press 27 reps with 220 pounds. A phenomenon that only happens every few generations.
Comparisons with action heroes from all major film studios quickly made the rounds on the Internet. There was also a figure that caused a stir: Metcalf, whose muscles act like armor on his body, is said to have had a body fat percentage of just 1.6 percent. Normal range for a man Metcalf’s age is between 8 and 20 percent. In reality, the value for the wide receiver should also be a little higher. When asked about it, the Seattle pro revealed, “I stick to a strict diet for most of the year, whether I’m in season or not.” He loves baked beans, an American dish made from white beans, but only in manageable portions.
Despite his incomparable physique, or perhaps because of it, NFL teams’ scouts had their doubts about Metcalf. They feared the wide receiver’s hardened muscles would limit his maneuverability on the football field. An elite wide receiver in the NFL must be able to shake off an opponent in a confined space and must not deviate from the rehearsed route on the grass. Otherwise there is a risk of a missed pass.
In addition, Metcalf struggled with injuries in college, including his neck, which caused him to miss many games. But the Seattle Seahawks finally struck in the draft and chose the talent in 64th place. Trainer Pete Carroll, who was almost 70 at the time, was so impressed by his muscular pro that he took off his T-shirt to greet him.
Despite his intimidating physique, garish outfits and often brightly colored hair, Metcalf apparently didn’t make a lasting impression in his early days in the NFL. After ESPN pundit Joe Tessitore misidentified him as Decaf Metcalf, Metcalf partnered with Volcanica Coffee. Within weeks of Tessitore’s slip, the company was selling coffee bags labeled “Decaf Metcalf.” Since then, the NFL professional has donated part of the proceeds to “Prison Fellowship”, an organization that looks after the well-being of prisoners.
On the football field, Metcalf increasingly gave his critics the lie – and capitalized on the sheer power of his body. After a few spectacular sprints and caught balls, nobody wanted to remember the initial doubts about his mobility. Metcalf appears like a lithe robot under physical exceptions. A scene from a game against the Arizona Cardinals catapulted him into the limelight.
Back then, Arizona’s Budda Baker headed for a touchdown with the ball deep in the Seattle half. Metcalf, who started about ten meters behind, ran behind Baker with huge strides and actually caught up with his opponent before the end zone. At the US Trials, he only missed qualifying for the Olympic Games in Tokyo in the final; the professional footballer, who weighed over 100 kilograms, ran the 100 meters in 10.37 seconds.
“He’s the best in the world at what he does. He’s consistently become one of the best receivers in the game,” said Russell Wilson, Metcalf’s former quarterback who was traded to the Denver Broncos before the season. “I think he’s one of the best receivers in the game. He can do anything – he can run past defenders, he can jump over them, he can physically beat them.”
In fact, the sea eagle with the imposing wings is now one of the best pass recipients in the league – and thanks to his extravagant performances also one of the dazzling stars. Before the game against Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Metcalf had already caught 42 passes for 510 yards. He is having a surprisingly strong season with his team.
Seattle signed him to a three-year, $72 million contract last summer. Sometimes it seems worthwhile to invest in legs.