You have been reading about our chronicle of Kyle Auffray’s journey in his pursuit of his ultimate dream — to make it into the NFL. But, not every path to the NFL is the same. Kyle’s journey is one of versatility, perserverance, hard work and always having a bag packed. In the last 2 weeks, all 32 teams have seen Kyle, both at his Pro Day at University of New Hampshire, and at the NFL’s Super Regional Combine in Detroit. Now we wait and see. But in the meantime, let’s recap what we’ve learned about Kyle, starting at the beginning, and help you get to know the player, the man, that is Kyle Auffray.
TFG: You left high school in NY as a QB to head to Mississippi State University. How did you decide on MSU?
Kyle: MSU was the biggest school that showed interest in me. They are in the SEC west which is considered the best division in the best conference. I felt it was a great opportunity for myself at the time.
TFG: You entered Mississippi State University as QB, but got injured early on. What then factored into your decision to transfer to University of New Hampshire?
Kyle: After my injury, I was not invited to attend camp in the fall because they needed healthy bodies. I was discouraged, and far away from home. I did not think I was going to get an opportunity anymore and all I wanted to do was play.
TFG: Once at UNH, you started sophomore year as QB, but soon transitioned to wide receiver. Then, due to more injuries on the team, you were asked to move again to tight-end. How did you perceive the transitions? What had to change for you to make the change? How was your attitude about making the switches?
Kyle: Well at first I was not happy with the move. I did not feel I had enough time to show the coaches what I could do at QB. They asked me to move to TE or OL right from QB and I was not comfortable with that. I played WR for spring ball and then moved to TE after that. The biggest difference was the physical nature of the position compared to a QB. I had been a QB my whole life, so it was all knew to me. At the end of the day, the coaches felt it was what was best for the team, and being the success the program at UNH has had, I accepted my new role.
TFG: We’ve heard you also served as UNH’s punter. How did that come about?
Kyle: I was always a punter a kicker growing up and in HS. It was something I always had with me, and kept it in my back pocket. When I transferred I told Coach McDonnell that I could punt, so he gave me an opportunity and I just ran with it. My junior year I was the back-up punter, and my senior year I earned the starting spot.
TFG: When you graduated UNH as a Kinesiology major and finished football there, describe your Pro Day.
Kyle: I graduated in December and went down to Miami to train with Bommarito Performance. After doing a 2 month training program I had my pro day back up at UNH where only 1 scout showed up. It was disappointing with the outcome, and due to weather issues, we had to perform everything on an indoor track instead of a field.
TFG: Most college players, with little opportunity coming from your Pro Day and no invite to the combines, would have given up the dream. What made you still keep on the path toward the NFL?
Kyle: Well during the lockout, I had attended a workout for the Hartford United Football League team. Based off that one workout, they had invited me into camp in the fall. The UFL is a high level of football and was going to give me the opportunity to show NFL teams that I could play. Of course the Hartford UFL team ended up dropping their team before the season started, but I felt I had proven to myself that I had the ability to play at the next level. And after everything I had been through up until that point, and a crazy off season with the lockout, I felt it was too soon to give up on a dream I have had since childhood.
TFG: During the past year and a half since leaving UNH, you’ve kept yourself active with football. Describe what you were hoping for from the UFL team in Hartford.
Kyle: I was hoping to compete at a high level, get some good quality film, and be on the field playing with the mindset that NFL teams would see me play and help get my name out there.
TFG: When the Hartford team disbanded, again you stuck with your dream. How has the new NFL regional combine system provided you with optimism?
Kyle: After all the road blocks I had to deal with last year, when all was said and done, I decided to head back down to Miami and get as big, strong, and fast as I could. I had plans this year to attend my pro day again and turn some head. Fortunately, the NFLPA had decided to sponsor 8 regional combines this year to give free agents and players not invited to the NFL Combine, and opportunity to show their talents to scouts in order to get invited to the NFL Super Regional Combine in Detroit. It is basically run the same way as the NFL Combine, just with different players. I attended the regional workout in Tampa Bay on Feb. 18th. I did not hear back from them for 2 weeks, which was killing me. But I kept working and kept training, and I finally got the call where I was invited to Detroit to workout in front of all 32 teams on March 30th. This is the biggest opportunity I have had yet, and has given me new life in pursuit of my dreams.