Jake Nordin has donned the helmets of six National Football League teams so far, albeit mostly during workouts on practice teams.
The 2002 graduate of Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City who helped the Falcons win the Class AA state title in 2001 on the Metrodome carpet, is back home after being signed by the Minnesota Vikings Sunday night.
Nordin, a 6-3, 265-pound tight end from Northern Illinois University, was released by the Detroit Lions on Thursday.
"I never give up hope that I can make it (in the NFL)," said Nordin, by telephone Tuesday night. "It's great when a team shows enough interest in me to sign me. It's really great to get signed by the Vikings. I've always been a Vikings fan."
Nordin was caught in the middle of the Brett Favre media circus Tuesday afternoon. The veteran quarterback signed a one-year contract with the Vikings and practiced with the team for the first time.
"There was a lot of people here today," said Nordin. "A lot of media people and a lot of fans."
Nordin, who has been signed and released by five different NFL teams so far, is so focused on trying not to get let go again that he wasn't even sure if he caught a pass in practice from Favre.
"I honestly don't know," he laughed. "I could have, but I was just trying to work hard and show the coaches what I have to offer, that I didn't pay any attention to who was throwing the ball."
Nordin went undrafted out of college, but quickly signed with the New England Patriots as a free agent. He was released before training camp and then signed with the Washington Redskins. He was released by the Redskins before the regular season, but did catch a pass against the Pittsburgh Steelers in a preseason game. Nordin then signed with the New York Giants, was released and signed with the Baltimore Ravens. He dressed for the final game of the 2007 season with the Ravens and saw action for three plays. Last season, he signed with the Lions, where he spent the entire season on the practice squad.
The Lions then released him prior to their preseason opener.
"I tweaked my hamstring a little and I'm sure that didn't help any," said Nordin. "So I went back home this past weekend. The Vikings then called my agent and said their doctors wanted to check me out. So I drove to the Cities (Sunday) and then they signed me."
Nordin, who is the only Minnesota prep player currently on the team's roster, is looking forward to dressing for the team's preseason game Friday against the Kansas City Chiefs. It will be the first time he has had football pads on inside the Dome since ACGC won the state title.