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GC SUNS confirm NFL signing Brandon Kaufman

Welcome Brandon Kaufman A SUNS TV feature on international scholarship player, Brandon Kaufman.

The Gold Coast SUNS are thrilled to confirm the signing of former NFL player Brandon Kaufman.

The 25-year-old Colorado product joins the SUNS as an international scholarship player, and in doing so becomes the club’s first international AFL recruit.

Kaufman, who played as a wide receiver for the Buffalo Bills in the NFL, impressed SUNS recruiters during a pre-season trial with his elite hands, agility and defensive capabilities.

He stands at 196cm, and in his bid to transition to his new sport has shed nine kilograms through enhanced endurance training, now weighing in at 96kgs.

Possessing great athletic prowess and elite quickness, the American prospect can clock 100 metres in 10.8 seconds, and takes only 48 seconds to clear 400 metres.

Kaufman said he was delighted to be given an opportunity to succeed in Australia’s game, as he sets his sights on developing as a key tall defender.

“Everyone has been incredibly good to me since I’ve come on board, and made an effort to come and make me feel welcomed,” he said.

“If there has ever been a time where I’ve needed help on the field the playing group have been happy to help me.”

“I picked up a Sherrin for the first time in November, and since then there hasn’t been a day where I haven’t learnt something new.”

Kaufman said he was beginning to make ground in his AFL education and development program.

“In January I was talking with some coaches, but I didn’t want to kick the football or have it in my hands – I just wanted to play defence and use my athleticism.

“But now I’m beginning to feel more comfortable with the Sherrin in my hands and I’ve still got time to keep getting better and better.”

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In crediting Kaufman’s agent, Zach Frederick’s, GC SUNS recruiting manager Dom Ambrogio is confident Kaufman has a long-term future on the Gold Coast.

“We are excited to announce Brandon has joined the SUNS as an international scholarship player,” Ambrogio said.

“Aside from his unique athleticism and size, Brandon’s appeal was his elite level competitiveness and work rate.

“He is a proven athlete; his experience as a wide receiver in the NFL has meant he has developed an elite ability to catch under duress.

“Brandon’s American football experience means he knows what it takes reach the elite level, and we’re confident, with hard work, he has the ability to establish himself as a player for the Gold Coast SUNS.”

Ambrogio said Kaufman had commenced his transition to AFL football, working closely with former NEAFL player Leigh McMahon in his hometown of Denver and Sean Clarke from Kick Builders in Brisbane.

“Brandon has already made a number of significant in-roads, and is well in the process of honing the basic demands of AFL football, including skills development, football education and game awareness.

Kaufman will be placed on a development program under the tutelage of mentors Aaron Rogers and Jamason Daniels, and will start out playing for the Labrador Tigers in the QAFL, before joining the Gold Coast SUNS reserves in the NEAFL competition.