Hot Take Friday: Steve McShane is the most underrated import in the league
Besides the Tirol Raiders, who only have signed three US-imports so far, every franchise already has their four American players under contract for the upcoming European League of Football season. While everybody is eager to see new stars like Silas Nacita or Markell Castle or is waiting for the return of standouts like Kyle Kitchens, Zach Edwards and more, there are certain players that are slept on.
Unranked high school standout
With plenty of imports to name here, I decided to go with Leipzig Kings running back Steve McShane here, since I feel like nobody has him on their radar. The Illinois native was not highly recruited out of high school, despite being a three-time All-Conference player for Freeport and one of the best running backs in NIC-10 history.
He committed to Western Illinois, a Division I FCS program, where he had an impact right away, playing in 12 games.
Over the following years, McShane’s production only increased. He became a three-time All-Conference player for the Leathernecks, finishing his career with more than 3400 scrimmage yards and 31 touchdowns. He was invited to the Pittsburg Steelers Minicamp in 2019 but was not signed afterward.
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What makes him special?
But what makes a 1,72 m running back that weighs only 84 kg so special, you might ask. The answer to that is pretty simple when you take a deep dive into his tape. McShane offers plenty of versatility. He does not have the most impressive top speed, but he is a bouncy and elusive back with great acceleration. His low center of gravity makes it hard for defenders to bring him down.
Besides his rushing skills, McShane is gifted in the passing game. With 109 career receptions, the former Western Illinois player is a true three-down back with great hands that can help out the Kings, even if the offensive line struggles again this season. But that’s not it. The running back is also a gifted punt and kick returner, that could have a massive impact on the Kings' special teams.
Steve McShane is one of the very few three-down backs the European League of Football has to offer. With outstanding abilities in the rushing and passing game and special teams abilities, McShane will not only be the best offensive player on the Leipzig Kings, but potentially one of the best in the whole league.