“If he grows a few inches, you should have him consider playing tackle football.”
This is the comment that Number One Son’s flag football coach told me after a football game. Number One Son had a good game at cornerback, shutting down the receivers on his side of the field. Tackle football? I can’t say that I am a fan of tackle football, given some recent history of deaths, concussions, and the general feeling that it doesn’t contribute toward lifelong fitness. Besides, Number One Son, while quick, is a thin lean Filipino kid. Filipino kids don’t go pro, do they?
Well, apparently, they do! At least there is a small number who do. While we have talked about Hines Ward and his work in South Korea, this article from the Asian Journal (reposted also here at New American Media) talks about NFL players of Filipino descent, both past (like former Rams quarterback Roman Gabriel) and present. Some, like running back Steve Slaton, are partly Filipino but acknowledge their ancestry (Slaton has a Filipino flag tattoo). Manila born offensive lineman Eugene Amano is not a typical Filipino at 6 foot 3 and 310 pounds. He gives back to the community by hosting football clinics, and is working to raise awareness and funds for Filipino Typhoon victims.
Will I let Number One Son play tackle football? I don’t know yet. We’ll see if he puts on those extra inches. While I am not very enthusiastic about tackle football, as I stated above, I’d like to see what he wants to do. In any case, it’s good to know that some Filipino kids can go pro.