The Detroit Lions have their eyes on a quarterback from a place where offense reigns supreme: the Arena Football League. Georgia Force gun-slinger R.J. Archer has been invited to the Lions' minicamp to be held May 11 and 12, giving him a coveted opportunity to make a positive impression on the NFL.
Archer is 6-foot-2 and 220 pounds out of William & Mary, where he played both quarterback and wide receiver. He signed with the Minnesota Vikings as an undrafted free agent in 2010, spending time on both the practice squad and on the 53-man roster throughout the season.
Archer then spent 2011 with the Arena Football League's Milwaukee Mustangs. In 13 games with the Mustangs, he threw for 2,353 yards and 27 touchdowns on the AFL's 50-yard-long field. He added another 35 yards and 5 touchdowns on the ground.
He moved to the Force for the 2012 AFL season, and in seven games with Georgia so far this year, he has shown tremendous improvement, already passing for 1,352 yards and 34 touchdowns against just five interceptions. He has also rushed for 36 yards and a touchdown, and he caught a 7-yard pass.
"It's definitely a good opportunity," said Archer through a press release. "It's always great when an NFL team wants to take a look at you. I'm just ready to get up there and get on the field and show them what I can do."
Despite the fact that Archer will miss Georgia's important South Division battle with the Tampa Bay Storm on May 12 while he's in Detroit, Force head coach Dean Cokinos is pleased to see his starting quarterback get an opportunity to shine in the NFL.
"This is part of the deal in the AFL," said Cokinos through the Force's website. "It is our goal to develop and promote as many players as possible to get them to the next level. R.J. deserves this opportunity."
This isn't the first time that the Lions have looked to the Arena Football League for talent. Detroit WR Rashied Davis played for the AFL's San Jose SaberCats for three seasons.
This also isn't the first time that the Force have had their players move up. In September, Force WR Rodney Bradley signed with the Baltimore Ravens. Georgia WR Justin Harper and DB Jamar Wall joined the Canadian Football League in January.
The author is a Featured Contributor in Sports for the Yahoo! Contributor Network and frequently contributes to the Yahoo! Sports arena football coverage. You can follow him on Twitter at @RedZoneWriting and on Facebook.
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