A.J. Francis becomes a professional wrestler

Mike Florio
ProFootball Talk on NBC Sports

A well-traveled former NFL player will be doing more traveling as part of his latest venture.

According to Omar Kelly of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, veteran defensive tackle A.J. Francis has signed a three-year deal with WWE to become a professional wrestler.

Francis, whose side gig with Uber drew attention several years ago, played for the Dolphins, Patriots, Seahawks, Buccaneers, Washington, and Giants from 2013 through 2018. Undrafted out of Maryland, Francis appeared in nine regular-season games.

With the wrestling name “Franc,” Francis will commence training with the WWE in Orlando, and he potentially could end up as a visible member of the wrestling league’s various productions.

“I’ve watched wrestling for nearly 30 years,” the 29-year-old Francis told Kelly. “The reason I moved to Orlando when I was in the NFL is because I knew when my career ended this is what I wanted to do.”

Francis walked away from football in 2018 to begin focusing on wrestling. He began training in Florida, and he’ll now take a big step farther in a sport that, while not entailing real competition, definitely features real physical demands.

What to Read Next