Before Rio, long jumper Jeff Henderson tried out with Kansas City Chiefs

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Jeff Henderson competes in the long jump at the Rio Olympics (Getty Images)
Jeff Henderson competes in the long jump at the Rio Olympics (Getty Images)

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Before he earned his spot on the United States track and field team for the Rio Olympics – and won the gold medal in long jump Saturday night – Jeff Henderson took a shot at earning a spot on a different roster: that of the Kansas City Chiefs.

Henderson was one of 67 players at Chiefs’ rookie mini-camp in May, giving football a shot for the first time in years. He played the sport until he was 15, and was one of 39 players the Chiefs invited on a tryout basis.

Henderson with his gold medal (Getty Images)
Henderson with his gold medal (Getty Images)

Listed at 5-foot-10, 187 pounds, Henderson tried out as a receiver, though he hasn’t played football competitively in 12 years. He competed in track at Stillman College in Alabama.

While it didn’t work out with Kansas City, coach Andy Reid acknowledged Henderson’s achievement on Monday.

“We’re proud of him for bringing home the gold,” Reid said, recalling that Henderson was speedy but perhaps distracted during his three days with the Chiefs.

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“I think he probably had his mind set on going to get the gold. He worked his tail off here, but (track) was probably his primary focus.”

Just a few weeks after his football break, Henderson, 27, won the U.S. Olympic Trials, and Saturday night in Rio, he clinched gold on his final jump of the night, edging South Africa’s Luvo Manyonga by one centimeter – 8.38 meters to 8.37 meters.