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Zimbabwean makes it big in American National Football League

FORT WORTH, TX - OCTOBER 6:  Stansly Maponga #90 of the TCU Horned Frogs during the Big 12 Conference game against the Iowa State Cyclones on October 6, 2012 at Amon G. Carter Stadium in Fort Worth, Texas.  (Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images)

Born in Zimbabwe Stansly Maponga left the country when he was only 9 years old, an age he would probably not have imagined of becoming Zimbabwe’s first player to feature in the National Football League the highest professional level of American football in the world.

The third-year Falcons linebacker has appeared in 24 NFL games during his first two seasons, registering eight total tackles. Listed as 6’2, 265 pounds, Maponga is listed as a linebacker on the roster.

In a recent interview with fox 5 sports Maponga said he is looking to expand his role in Atlanta and solidify his spot on the team; for himself and his career, yes, but also to put himself in a better position to be able to give back to kids in Zimbabwe.

When asked about Maponga’s abilities as a player Stansly’s coach said, “The initial thing that jumps off with Stansly is when we put him outside at defensive end, he has real quickness to go,” said Falcons head coach Dan Quinn. “He’s really improving. He’s a guy who works extremely hard. as we feature him, we’re trying to find the best pass rush spot for him. That’s what we’re featuring with him during camp.”

The Zimbabwean born player made history by entering the NFL draft. At an imposing 6’ 2” (1.88 m) tall and 128 kg of sheer strength and power, Stansly left university one year early to make himself available to professional teams in the NFL a decision that paid off after eventually making it to the NFL where he turns out for the Falcons.



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