It appears that former New York Jets’ quarterback Christian Hackenberg has given up on his football career. Instead, Hackenberg, who was a second-round pick in 2016, will try baseball.
Hackenberg, who last played in Alliance of American Football league in 2019, confirmed his decision in a recent interview with NBC Philadelphia. According to the 25-year-old, he wants to “compete” and thinks he can make it in baseball after failing in football.
“Simple as I can put it: I just want to compete, man,” said Hackenberg. “I’ve kind of had my trials and tribulations with the NFL, and had success and had that roller-coaster ride. At the end of the day, I’m sitting here at 25. For me … I feel like I’ve got a lot left in the tank.”
Hackenberg played baseball in high school, playing as a reliever and posting 7.36 ERA with 33 strikeouts. He was more accomplished at hitting the ball, however, having .378 batting average and 10 home runs.
Reportedly, Hackenberg will try to make it in baseball as a pitcher, relying on a 90 mph fastball. He is already putting in the effort to master the nuances of the position and hopes he’ll get a chance to showcase his talent soon.
“He’s young, has the work ethic, a ton of natural arm talent, plenty of athleticism and the focus it takes to put himself in a position to have a chance,” his agent Noel LaMontagne told ESPN.
Despite an accomplished football career in college, Christian Hackenberg never managed to play a single game in NFL. He spent two seasons with Jets, where he failed to win a backup spot despite being a high draft pick. Jets released Hackenberg in 2018, and he had brief stints with the Raiders, Philadelphia Eagles, and Cincinnati Bengals, but never managed to survive the final roster cuts.