The odds of two high school football players growing up less than 20 minutes apart in outstate Minnesota and now currently playing tight end in the NFL are as remote as the Timberwolves winning the NBA crown this season.
John Carlson grew up in Litchfield and graduated in 2003. Jake Nordin grew up in Lake Lillian and graduated from Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City in 2002. The two have never played against one another in high school, college or the pros. Maybe some day their paths will cross.
Carlson plays for the Seattle Seahawks and Nordin is with the Detroit Lions. Carlson was a second-round draft choice of the Seahawks out of Notre Dame two years ago and has over 100 career catches. Nordin, who played for Northern Illinois, went undrafted and was cut by several NFL teams before finally getting a chance with the Lions this season. He played in each of the team's final three games this season and caught his first NFL pass three weeks ago against the Arizona Cardinals. He also caught a pass the following week against the San Francisco 49ers and had a 15-yard reception called back because of a penalty in the team's final game against the Chicago Bears last Sunday.
Neither the Seahawks or Lions made the playoffs this season so we figured we'd put the idle tight ends to work and ask each their predictions for the NFL playoffs that begin today.
John Carlson: Bengals over Jets, Patriots over Ravens
Jake Nordin: Bengals over Jets, Ravens over Patriots
John Carlson: Cowboys over Eagles, Packers over Cardinals
Jake Nordin: Cowboys over Eagles, Packers over Cardinals
John Carlson: Colts over Bengals, Chargers over Patriots
Jake Nordin: Colts over Ravens, Chargers over Bengals
John Carlson: Vikings over Cowboys, Saints over Packers
Jake Nordin: Vikings over Cowboys, Saints over Packers
John Carlson: Colts over Chargers
Jake Nordin: Colts over Chargers
John Carlson: Saints over Vikings
Jake Nordin: Vikings over Saints
John Carlson: Colts over Saints
Jake Nordin: Vikings over Colts