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Detroit Lions sign ‘fastest man in rugby’ to their practice squad

Eric Edholm
Shutdown Corner

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Carlin Isles (USA Today Sports Images)

The Detroit Lions are out of the postseason race, and they might make a coaching change in the offseason. But they are bringing in a speedy rugby player for a look at season's end.

The Lions have signed Carlin Isles, who has been called "the fastest rugby player in the world," to the team's practice squad, per the Detroit News.

Isles, 24, is from Massillon, Ohio — a legendary high-school football hotbed — but ran track growing up and after trying out rugby in 2012, earned fame by being named "The Fastest Man in Rugby" by Rugby Magazine last year and featured by Grantland in July.

He stands 5-foot-8 and weighs 165 pounds. Isles reportedly ran a 4.22-second 40-yard dash in his workout for the Lions. The extent of his football-playing career is returning kickoffs for Division-II Ashland University in 2008 and 2009, where he set a school record for most return yards in a game, and had a 100-yard kickoff for a score.

The Lions made waves when they signed Norwegian Youtube sensation "Kickalicious" Havard Rugland, who performed well in the preseason and nearly beat out David Akers despite having never kicked in a football game before.

The Lions are taking a similar gamble-on-greatness approach with Isles' rare speed. Why not?

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Eric Edholm is a writer for Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at edholm@yahoo-inc.com or follow him on Twitter!

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