NFL

Hate mail to Naval Lt. in NFL?

Eric Kettani Says He Gets Hate Mail for Playing in NFL
Eric Kettani originally signed as an undrafted free agent with, ironically, the Patriots.
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NFL'S MILITARY MEN

Football has had a long history with armed forces. Here’s to the ones who sacrifice so much.

Most NFL players get fan mail praising them for their accomplishments on the field. Eric Kettani gets hate mail.

Kettani, who graduated from the Naval Academy in 2009, plays for the Washington Redskins now, but that’s only after a long and tiring battle with the US Government.

In order to play in the NFL, Kettani, who was recently promoted to lieutenant, negotiated a deal with the Department of Defense in 2012 to serve the remainder of his 10-year military service in the Naval reserves. That decision might make some Redskins fans very happy this season, but many people around the United States resented Kettani for his decision.

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“I received some hate mail, saying, ‘Go back to the military, do your job, and do what you signed up for,’ ” Kettani said during an interview on NFL Network on Thursday morning. ”They have every right to say that.”

Kettani originally joined the NFL as an undrafted free agent with the New England Patriots in 2009, but was placed on the Reserve/Military list later that year. He was added to the team practice squad in 2011, but was recalled to the Navy. On Valentine's Day in 2012, he again joined the Patriots practice squad before getting cut before the season opener.

A week later — on September 11 — the Redskins signed him to their practice squad. Head coach Mike Shanahan, who recently attended Kettani’s Navy promotion, said the fullback’s chances of making this season's final 53-man roster are “good,” according to NFL.com.

Tagged: Redskins, Eric Kettani

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