The NFL Players with Jewish Backgrounds
The NFL welcomes individuals from a range of different ethnic and religious groups of origin which has allowed the league to attract a number of upstart athletes and audiences from a variety of backgrounds and beliefs, allowing the league to flourish into a worldwide commodity for all races.
The NFL has evolved in many ways throughout the decades, which has included the continuous introduction of developing star players from various different backgrounds of diversity.
Nowadays, the NFL features players from various ethnicities and religious beliefs which has also attracted fans from all corners of the globe to watch the game unfold in front of their own eyes.
The NFL is now widely broadcasted across the world and has been greatly merited for its inclusion of ethnic minorities and diversity, which has included players from various religious faiths including Judaism.
Athletes with Jewish backgrounds of faith are now becoming more prominently involved with the sporting world in both the US and various other sporting leagues, with the NFL being of absolutely no exception.
Some of the league’s most historic names such as Hall of Fame head coach and executive Al Davies and legendary Quarterbacks such as Sid Luckman and Benny Friedman as well as former Patriots All-Pro First Team Linebacker Andre Tippett were all raised or converted with Jewish beliefs and are now rightly inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame alongside the game’s most elite alumni of names.
Currently, there are still a number of active NFL players of Jewish background and beliefs with these being some of the top names featured in the league today:
Greg Joseph – Minnesota Vikings:
Joseph has quickly established himself as one of the NFL’s best special teams kickers and has played an integral role in the recent success that the Minnesota Vikings franchise has enjoyed in recent years.
This season, the Vikings were able to win their first NFC North Division title since the 2017 campaign and are ranked at +3500 to claim their first ever Vince Lombardi trophy in the latest Superbowl betting odds.
Joseph has converted 79% of his field goals this season, with his longest made attempt being a 61-yard conversion against the New York Giants on Christmas Eve to give the Vikings a 27-24 victory over their Conference rivals.
The South African-born pro is a Jewish school graduate and has already become a major fan favorite within the city of Minneapolis on a Vikings team that have announced themselves as a potential championship contender for years to come.
Jake Curhan – Seattle Seahawks:
The six foot six, near 320 pound offensive tackle is one of the NFL’s brightest undrafted upstarts at the position for a Seahawks franchise that has been in desperate need of improving their offensive line for a number of years.
After going undrafted following his four-year stay with the California Golden Bears program, Curhan has made a number of sporadic appearances for the NFL franchise including five starts.
At just 24 years of age, Curhan is still considered to be a relatively raw prospect but could grow into an integral part of the Seahawks offense should the coaching staff look to add him back into the lineup.
Curhan dubbed himself with the nickname “Bear Jew” and is an alumni of a Jewish summer camp, with this towering force looking to announce himself as one of the most feared offensive linemen in the league as he continues to develop his game.
Anthony Firkser – Atlanta Falcons:
The Harvard Tight End has now concluded his fifth active season in the NFL and his first season with the Atlanta Falcons franchise following four productive seasons with the Tennessee Titans.
After initially going undrafted back in 2017, Firkser was signed to both the New York Jets and Kansas City Chiefs practice squads before eventually being snagged up by the Titans.
During his four years with the Titans, Firkser played in numerous games across the season with arguably his best campaign being the 2021 season where he played 15 games, caught 34 receptions on 291 yards with two touchdowns scored and 15 receiving first downs.
With the Falcons organization, Firkser has appeared sporadically across the season with his current future with the franchise remaining unclear as the Falcons are already set for the long-term at the tight end position with Pro Bowl talent Kyle Pitts.
Should the Falcons look to resign Firkser, it is likely that he will remain as a viable option as a backup for Pitts with other clubs also likely to scout out the Harvard graduate should the opportunity present itself.
The NFL continues to garner traction and attention from various ethnic and religious groups as more aspiring athletes now look to test their skills against some of the sports most prolific names on the grandest of stages.