Jarryd Hayne gets the text message of a lifetime.

UPDATE: It’s the message he’s been waiting for.

Australian Jarryd Hayne has done the unthinkable and secured a spot on the San Francisco 49ers’ final 52-man NFL roster.

Hayne has made one of the greatest code-switches in sporting history after making the 49ers squad on Sunday morning (AEST).

The former Parramatta Eels star said waiting for the final deadline was not enjoyable, describing it as agonising.

“Yeah it was [nerve-racking]. Probably the last 10 minutes I was like ‘what’s going on, do I get a phone call? Is someone going to tell me that I have a job or not?’ So that was probably the first time I’ve been nervous in a while,” Hayne told The Sydney Morning Herald.

Mamamia previously wrote:

He’s the Aussie making headlines on both sides of the Pacific.


When Jarryd Hayne left the NRL, many believed that the decision may have been the end of his career. After nine years as a celebrated footballer for the Parramatta Eels, Hayne was on the cusp of signing a multi-million dollar contract that would see him become one of the highest paid athletes in the NRL.

But the Rugby League star had a childhood dream he wanted to pursue. And it involved changing codes – and countries – to join the NFL in the United States.

With no contacts in the United States and no history of playing college football, moving overseas took a huge leap of faith for the Dally M medalist, and many critics believed it was a mistake that wouldn’t pay off.

jarryd hayne 1
Hayne (left) was a celebrated NRL star who gave it all up to try his hand at the NFL. Image via Twitter.

Of course, Hayne’s move to the NFL wasn’t the first time it had been reported that he would change codes.

In 2009, reports circulated that Greater Western Sydney was trying to lure Hayne to the AFL by offering him a $1.5 million contract. That December, Hayne resigned with Paramatta and went on to become the NRL’s Player of the Year in 2014.

On the back of that success, his decision to leave the NRL rocked the sporting community.

Click through the gallery for more of Jarryd. Post continues below.

But it was something that Hayne had wanted to do since late 2012. He just needed to work up the courage. “I feel like I’ve done everything in the game. What more is there to achieve other than a premiership? In life, you have to enjoy the journey and, for me, the journey of having a crack at the NFL is far greater than anything here,” he said after announcing his resignation.  

The money – believed to be up to $1.35 million a season under new contract negotiations – wasn’t a motivating factor to get Hayne to stay on.

“My whole dream as a professional athlete was to buy my mum a house. I did that. Everything else has been a bonus.”

With no money on offer, no backing and no experience playing NFL, there was always the possibility that Hayne’s gamble would go spectacularly wrong. But he just wanted to play.


The decision was one that weighed heavily on him in his early days in the US.

Hayne’s faith got him through the early days in the US. Image via Instagram.

“The first three weeks, literally, I would walk out of meetings and I would be speaking to the boys, going, ‘Mate, I did not understand one word he said’,” Hayne told The Footy Show.

“I’ve had my dark days in San Fran. I’ve had days where, literally, if I didn’t have my faith I’d be home. I’d be back in a heartbeat.”

It seems that the move has paid off for the 27-year-old, who, after making the cut for the San Francisco 49ers’ final 53-man roster, put on an incredible performance that made headlines on both sides of the Pacific.

But as Hayne writes on Twitter, he’s just having fun chasing his dreams.

What do you think of Jarryd Hayne’s decision to leave the NRL? 

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