Shaquem Griffin: One-handed linebacker selected by Seahawks in NFL Draft

A standout linebacker for the undefeated University of Central Florida, Griffin achieved all of his success despite having no left hand, which was amputated at age four due to a pre-natal condition.

After waiting into the third day of the selection process, Griffin's selection in the fifth round by the Seattle Seahawks became one of the most electric moments of this draft.

Griffin, whose twin brother Shaquill was selected by the Seahawks in the third round a year ago, was in attendance at Dallas' AT&T Stadium to hear his name called at the 2018 NFL Draft.

"It's unbelievable just to be here right now, I couldn't ask for more, " Shaquem Griffin said.

"I know the 425, the 206 - I know the area codes for Seattle". "It was tough, I'm not going to lie to you". Instead, Griffin just wants to be regarded as a football player.

"I'm glad they made this happen", the elder of the twins continued. If that were true, the coaching staff were soon pleasantly surprised: The linebacker was named American Athletic Conference defensive player of the year in 2016. Shaquem [pronounced Shah-keem] Griffin returned to the AT&T Stadium stage, donned a Seahawks cap, and drew lengthy cheers from fans as he shook hands and high-fived others. "Sometimes the pressure like that can break you and it is a lot of pressure", Shaquem said.

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If he performs at the level he did in college, who knows where he might be a few years down the road?

He followed that effort with 74 total tackles, seven sacks, two forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries and an interception in 2017 as Central Florida finished 13-0 and beat Auburn in the Peach Bowl.

After receiving a late invitation to the scouting combine, Griffin ran a 4.38 40-yard dash, the fastest time for a linebacker since such records have been kept.

Using a prosthetic on his left arm he bench pressed over 100kg 20 times as National Football League hopefuls were put through their paces by team representatives in March.

Shaquem Griffin was born with amniotic band disorder, according to the Seattle Times. The reason I'm so excited to be able to prove so many people wrong is, a lot of people see somebody who has one hand instead of two, and they think it's different or it doesn't make sense.


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