The Forgotten Story Of Lancashire’s American Football Ace

Mike in action against the Atlanta Falcons in 1972. (picture: Mike Walker)

I’ve had an article published on the Guardian’s Northerner site today, which you can read here. It’s all about the man in the picture, Mike Walker, a bricklayer from Lancashire who ended up kicking in the NFL for the New England Patriots, after winning a competition and making it through the team’s training camp in the early 1970s.

It took a while to track Mike down to a town near Boston, where he still lives, but I enjoyed doing a bit of old-fashioned detective work. We had a good chat on the phone last week and there was a lot more I could have included in the article. But as it was aimed more at a non-sport audience, I had to leave out some aspects which would have been interesting only to NFL fans. A bit frustrating, but you always have to think of your audience.

If you haven’t come across it before, The Northerner site in general is well worth reading. It’s a slightly hidden-away part of the Guardian’s website, but there are lots of interesting articles and links on there. There’s also a Twitter feed here.

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