NBA

Cavs' LeBron believes he could star in NFL

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CLEVELAND (AP)

NBA superstar LeBron James watched the Cleveland Browns be whitewashed by the Baltimore Ravens 16-0 on Monday and came to one simple conclusion: He could help.
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"If I put all my time and commitment into it, if I dedicated myself to the game of football, I could be really good," the Cleveland Cavaliers guard said on Tuesday. "No matter what team I was on." The Browns, with one win in nine games, have one of the NFL's most anemic offenses. The NBA's reigning MVP certainly couldn't make things any worse. James was a wide receiver at high school, and chosen to represent Ohio state before quitting American football after his third year to focus on basketball. But he still follows the game closely and believes he could have been a hybrid tight end/receiver in the mold of San Diego's Antonio Gates or Atlanta's Tony Gonzalez. Gates, who played basketball in college and not American football, is listed at 6-foot-4 and 260 pounds. James is listed at 6-8 and 250 pounds. "They're not always lined up next to the tackle," James said. "Sometimes they go against strong safeties and linebackers. It's tough to match up with those guys because they're so athletic." James filmed a commercial last year for an insurance company that depicted him in a No. 23 Browns jersey with "LeBron" stitched across the back. He has no serious plans of returning to American football, but said playing the two sports takes entirely different types of stamina. "I'd be in football shape during football season, then I'd go to basketball and feel like I was out of shape," he said. "It's totally different. And another thing you have to get used to is getting hit again." Since James never went to college, it was mentioned he still may have eligibility remaining if he wanted to try playing college football. There is just the issue of the $90 million shoe contract James signed with Nike before ever playing a game in the NBA. "What if I gave it all back?" he joked.

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