Being a long snapper is one of the most overlooked and under-appreciated positions on the football field. If a field goal or punt attempt goes off seemingly well, then the kicker or punter gets the recognition much of the time. If it doesn’t, much of the blame is put on the player who is tossing the ball multiple yards between his legs while blocking incoming players or sprinting downfield to tackle returners.
It may be Jordan Laube’s ticket to achieve his lifelong dream of playing professional football, though.
With just months to go before he graduates Bryant University, the 2015 Westhampton Beach graduate is currently the 15th-ranked long snapper in the country according to the NCAA scouting website, ourlads.com, and is ranked second among fellow FCS, or Division I-AA, snappers. If he isn’t taken in the upcoming NFL Draft in April, which is a possibility, Laube has a good chance at latching on to a pro team as an undrafted free agent.
Laube would join Sean Farrell and Dan Jiggetts as the only Westhampton Beach graduates to play in the NFL. Farrell played for four different teams in his 10-year pro career from 1982-1992, while Jiggetts played for the Chicago Bears from 1976-1982.
“It’s very rare for long snappers to get drafted. There was only one last year, and two the year before that, who got drafted,” he explained. “A week after the draft, I’ll become an undrafted free agent and most teams will carry two snappers, and with about 20 of us in this draft class, my chances are there to at least make a preseason roster.”
At that point, anything can happen, he added. “I do believe that I can,” he said, “with my ability and what I’ve learned just within the past the year, play at the next level.”
Laube first got into long snapping his junior year at Westhampton Beach, when the Hurricanes were in need of one. It came naturally to him and he became the team’s regular snapper for the next two seasons, on top of being an offensive tackle and defensive end.
After a solid high school game, Laube’s mother, Kym Laube, had commented and said that it would be nice if long snappers received scholarships, and someone in the crowd mentioned that they did. As a senior at Westhampton Beach, Laube attended three different college showcases and five camps and wound up with a scholarship to Bryant in Smithfield, Rhode Island.
He has since enjoyed a solid career on the gridiron there, playing in all 11 games both his senior and junior seasons and nine his sophomore year. A concussion limited Laube his freshman season, and even if he wasn’t hurt, Laube said because of an early road stretch for the team, he wasn’t going to play all that much anyway, so he could get accustomed to his class schedule.
Laube had one of his best seasons at Bryant this past fall as a senior. He was named to the National Team of the FCS Bowl, a senior All-Star game, and he attended a pair of showcases—the College Gridiron Showcase and Symposium at McNair Stadium in Fort Worth, Texas, and the Husted Kicking Pro Free Agent Camp and Combine in Mobile, Alabama—which has helped him get on NFL teams’ radars.
Laube said he has improved by leaps and bounds just within the past two years, thanks to guru Kyle Stelter, the owner of Special Teams University, who has helped coach current and former NFL players to go along with hundreds of college and amateur long snappers.
A resident of Eau Claire, Wisconsin, Stelter, 31, played his college ball at a Division III school before playing with the Sacramento Mountain Lions of the United Football League, and received a rookie mini camp invite with the New York Jets in 2014. He does most of his coaching virtually through Facetime and meets with his clients once a month to work on various things.
“I’ve been helping [Laube] increase his snap speed and accuracy,” Stelter said. “He’s developed into a really solid snapper and has really made a nice career so far at being a great athlete and being able to get down the field in coverage
“I’m extremely proud of him as he continues to train and push himself to be a snapper at the next level,” he added.
Stelter said that Laube has as good a shot as anyone to be able to play pro ball and Laube is excited for the opportunity of realizing a lifelong dream.
“It’s always been a my dream of mine to play at the professional level,” he said. “I figured I’d be playing linebacker or tight end, but as I got into my freshman year and did my fours years at Bryant, all the hard work of being a long snapper has paid off and I feel like achieving that goal of playing professionally can come to fruition.”