NFL dream still alive for Kiwi lineman Markowitz

BEN STRANG
Last updated 16:21 15/05/2014
Abe Markowitz
Getty Images
AMERICAN DREAM: Abe Markowitz has been called into a Seahawks rookie minicamp to prove his worth in the NFL.

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There could soon be a Kiwi plying his trade in the NFL.

Auckland-born Abe Markowitz has been invited to the 2014 Super Bowl Champion Seattle Seahawks' rookie minicamp this weekend.

The centre/guard spent five years at the University of Southern California, playing his first year under current Seahawks coach Pete Carroll.

He went undrafted in the 2014 NFL Draft at the weekend, but got the call today as a free agent, inviting him to the Seahawks' minicamp starting tomorrow (NZ time).

Markowitz said he was thrilled to get the call, and is ready to prove his worth to the Seahawks.

''I was in free agency, just waiting and hoping a team would pick me up,'' he said.

''I was hoping a team was after a centre or guard, and the Seahawks gave me a call first. I can't believe it.''

Markowitz was born in Auckland, but lived with his family in Samoa until he was 4.

From there the family moved to Hawaii, where he has lived ever since.

He said his aunt still lives in New Zealand, and he hopes to return ''once I have made some NFL money''.

''It's not going to be easy at all,'' Markowitz said of the rookie minicamp.

''Basically there are 30-odd free agents called in, and only two people will probably get to stay on with the team, so it's a real battle.

''I know Pete Carroll from USC, which is an advantage because I know what he wants, and he knows what I am like.

''Hopefully I can prove my worth to him and the Seahawks.''

The players will not wear pads during minicamp, but that doesn't mean the play won't be physical.

''It'll be just like rugby,'' Markowitz said. ''It'll be like packing scrums for three days. Hopefully I have that Kiwi advantage.''

Markowitz flies to Seattle overnight, with the camp getting underway on Friday morning in the United States.

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